Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 4 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 8/6/10

There is No Immigration Crisis

By Kemstone  Posted by Kevin Gosztola (about the submitter)       (Page 1 of 2 pages)   No comments
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Kevin Gosztola

*Article was originally postedat and was reposted with permission from the author.

If you're one of those consumers of conservative news who is convinced that the problem of illegal immigration is spinning wildly out of control, that crime rates in border states are soaring, that ranches on American soil are being taken over by violent drug cartels, and that this problem must be dealt with immediately through strong measures like the Arizona sb1070 law or the repeal of the 14th amendment, I dare you to watch this entire segment from the Rachel Maddow show:

The following video was published as a Flash video, which are no longer allowed. Here is the video link: VIEW VIDEO (in a new browser window)

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

If you didn't watch it because you're afraid of being confronted with actual facts that might shake the carefully constructed worldview you've been operating under for decades, you're not in the clear yet. I suggest you stop reading this now if you want to preserve your illusions.

The fact is, illegal immigration is not spinning wildly out of control. This chart from the U.S. Department of Commerce shows the number of migrant apprehensions along the U.S.-Mexico border over the last two decades:

Copyrighted Image? DMCA

Wouldn't you know it--it's actually going down. Why? It might have something to do with the massive economic recession we're going through, seeing as how the same thing happened during the mini-recession of the early 2000s. When the economy sucks, less immigrants come here because there are obviously fewer opportunities for them to get hired and enjoy a significantly better standard of living than they'd be able to have in Mexico. If conditions are poor on both sides of the fence, they might as well remain on their side.

But what about crime? John McCain recently called Phoenix the "kidnapping capital of the world", a blatantly false talking point that's now being repeated by his fellow Arizona senator John Kyl, who insists that crime rates are rising wildly due to the supposed rise in illegal immigrants crossing the border. These guys are sure serving their state well! I'm sure everyone who works in the Arizona tourist industry are very happy that their senators are telling the rest of the country that it's not safe to come to Arizona.

Well, let's do them a favor and look at the facts. In the above clip, a segment from an interview with John Kyl is played in which the senator is confronted with the inconvenient fact that crime rates in Arizona have actually been dropping. Kyl insists that while certain kinds of crimes have been going down, property crimes and violent crimes have been going up. Here are the numbers:

Property Crimes in AZ:
231,633 (2009)
262,130 (2008)
277,051 (2007)
281,686 (2006)

Violent Crimes in AZ:
26,094 (2009)
28,753 (2008)
29,612 (2007)
30,833 (2006)

If you look closely, you'll notice those numbers consistently going down. The Arizona in which illegal immigrants are constantly pouring over the border to rape, pillage, plunder, kidnap and murder Americans exists solely in the imagination of conservative politicians, their enablers in the right-wing media, and those predisposed to believe anything that supports their pre-existing worldview while ignoring everything else.

Incidentally, the story about how the Los Zetas drug cartel has taken over ranches in Laredo, Texas--that Mexican drug-lords are invading American soil--is also completely false. In fact, if you Google "los zetas laredo" you can scroll through at least five pages of right-wing blogs trumpeting the story without ever coming to a single actual news source. You won't even find the story anywhere on Why? Because they check facts, and there are no facts behind this one.

Republican politicians still think it's the mid-1980s and that getting people all riled up about illegal immigrants is a great way to win elections. If stories that support their portrait of Mexican immigrants as violent criminals can't be found, conservatives simply invent them. They forget that it's 2010, when the truth can easily be found with nothing more than an internet connection and a few minutes of spare time.

Next Page  1  |  2

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).

Rate It | View Ratings

Kevin Gosztola Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof Press. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure." He was an editor for
Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines

Contact EditorContact Editor
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

We Do Not Consent to Warrantless "Porno-Scanning" in Airports

Do They Put Lipstick on Pigs at the Funny Farm?

How Private Prison Corporations Hope Arizona's SB1070 Will Lead to Internment Camps for Illegals

Why the Battle Against TSA Groping and Body Scanners is Justified

Give Obama a Chance to Do What?

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend