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Letter: Placing names on a wall unfairly taints people

A July 12 letter suggested that the names of persons murdered by undocumented immigrants be placed on a wall. Choosing a subset of any group should be done with caution. It is true that unlawfully entering the United States is a misdemeanor and these infractions should be adjudicated. However, extrapolating from that offense that these undocumented individuals are more likely to commit felonies, such as murder is fallacious.

Statistically, undocumented immigrants are less likely to commit violent crimes, than native-born Americans and when it comes to mass murders their numbers are non-existent. Timothy McVeigh, Eric Rudolph, Dylann Roof and all the perpetrators of school shootings have something in common. They have all been native-born white males,

The members of white “sovereign citizens” groups have been the largest perpetrators in the murders of law enforcement personnel. They have all been native-born white males. There has rarely, if ever. been an undocumented immigrant convicted in the murder of a law enforcement officer.

Using the subset of native-born white male mass murders could lead to the conclusion that it is safer to come in contact with an undocumented immigrant than it is to come in contact with a native-born white male. Making this type of argument would rightly cause howls of rage from members of the targeted group.

Although undocumented individuals have broken U.S. law by illegally entering the country it is important to prioritize law enforcement in order to use resources wisely. Demonizing undocumented immigrants and pressuring their communities may possibly prevent some violent crime, but the average perpetrator of murder in the United States is not a member of those communities.

Even in this “post-truth” era, facts are facts.

Larry Finkelstein

East Amherst

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