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Letter: Trump had good reason to secure U.S. border

Some 2,000 children had been affected by Trump’s harsh policy of separating children from their parents when they were caught crossing the Mexican border. To put things in perspective, another 32,372 unaccompanied alien children have been apprehended at the border so far this fiscal year. These alien families separated themselves, the parent(s) crossed the border, and later asked their children to make the perilous journey across the border alone. That’s pretty harsh too, but totally self-inflicted.

Trump has now bowed to pressure and will allow families to stay together but under his zero-tolerance policy, they will be detained with their parents until a hearing is conducted.

Prior to May 2018, families that crossed the border illegally were not separated and were simply released into the United States and asked to show up later for a hearing on whether they should be granted asylum (a policy labeled, “catch-and-release.”) Of course many, if not all, of these families never returned for a hearing and merely stayed in the country illegally as did most of the other over 250,000 apprehended illegal aliens that cross the Mexican border every year. They, along with a likely equal number of aliens who sneak across the border but are not caught, join the more than 11 million illegal aliens already living in our country.

We accept a million legal immigrants into the United States every year along with a additional 70,000 refugees. Currently there are 37 million legal immigrants in this country. They work, pay taxes, and contribute to our society. We are historically the most open, welcoming, and diverse nation in the world. Securing our borders doesn’t change that.

The false narrative that those of us who favor secure borders are anti-immigrant, isolationist, racist, or xenophobic is simply political spin designed to pander to Hispanics for their votes.

James Arkins

Amherst

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