By David L. Wilson, coauthor, with Jane Guskin, of The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers (Second Edition).
….while GOP politicians talk about “Biden’s open borders policies,” migrants continue to die in their efforts to elude capture at a frontier which is actually quite well guarded. In May, the Border Patrol reported finding the bodies of 203 migrants so far in fiscal year 2021.
But the present increase in border apprehensions hardly justifies the term “crisis.”
It’s true that as of June, this fiscal year’s apprehensions had topped 1 million for the first time since 2006. Still, this only seems high because of a sharp contrast with the previous 14 years. Apprehensions were unusually low during that period, as Princeton sociologist Douglas Massey, an expert on immigration patterns, showed in a 2020 study. Apprehensions exceeded a million a year for most of the period from 1983 to 2006, but they declined significantly during and after the Great Recession of 2007-2009. This year’s increase is at most a return to normal.
But it may well be a temporary uptick. “My guess is that [the 2021 increase] shows the effects of the COVID epidemic,” Massey told Truthout in an email. Economic hardships created by COVID may have pushed more Mexican workers to cross the border, he noted, and these conditions might also explain the increase in asylum seekers from Brazil, Cuba, Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela….
You can read Wilson’s full piece at Truthout, where Wilson is a regular contributer.
Copyright, Truthout.org. Reprinted with permission
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