If you're keeping track of the daily outrage meter, right now Leftist agitators are really upset about [SPINS THE WHEEL]... Immigration!
More specifically: detained people at the border. Democrats, progressives and liberals alike are claiming the current massive movement of outrage stems from separating children from their parents, but that policy, which was first started during the Clinton administration, ended last week after President Trump signed an executive order.
Considering how responsive he was to their cries and protests, Democrats should be singing Trump's praises this week (but they're not).
Ok, fine, so this outrage is more about tribalism (Left vs Right) than it is about an actual human rights crisis, but who's really to blame for what's currently taking place at our border? The Republicans? The Democrats? The cartels? Mexican and Central American political leaders? Heck, the so called "Anchor Baby" law has been on the books since the 14th Amendment first passed in 1868. That law was signed by President Andrew Johnson, a Democrat. Of course, there have been a couple court cases and conflicting opinions from legal scholars and so-called Constitution experts on that issue. Some say if the parents don’t owe allegiance to the US, then the baby isn’t an "anchor baby". Others say different. This remains a debated topic with no simple answer & it barely scratches the surface of the legal loopholes in our nation's immigration system.
In year 1980 marked a crucial moment for America's immigration crisis when President Jimmy Carter signed the Refugee Act to help get America up to date with the UN's human rights standards (more specifically the 1951 UN Convention and the 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees). This policy was a crucial turning point for the border crisis, as a large scale migration of hundreds of thousands of Central Americans began flowing into the US. We hadn't seen these kinds of refugee immigrant numbers since the end of World War II.
So is Jimmy Carter to blame? Or Andrew Johnson? If we're being totally honest and objective, everyone with any influence over the lives of people living in between the United States and South America has played a role in what's causing thousands of people to leave their home countries and flee to the good ol' US of A, but there is one person who has had a considerable influence on the current migration crisis over the past decade and his name isn't Trump.
In May of 2011 President Obama traveled to the Rio Grande Valley sector of our border. While he was there he pushed for immigration reform (which is the Democrat's a fancy way of saying "amnesty").
President Obama proudly told reporters that the border was a safe place.
He jokingly said Republicans wanted to cover the region with "Alligator moats", not realizing that the region of the border where he was currently occupying was already chock full of alligators. In fact, the Rio Grande Valley (which isn't so much a valley, but actually more a flood plain) has been home to a countless number of alligator sightings since at least the mid 20th century. Not surprisingly, if you live in the Rio Grande Valley, alligators are the least of your concern. Cartel kidnappings, blackmailing, murders and rapes are far more pressing issues that concern the locals. Heck, you can eat alligator if you encounter one, but you can't eat a cartel gunmen - all you can do if you live in Mexico is run from them and try to dodge their bullets. This is a consequence of Mexico's strict gun laws: only the criminals have guns.
OK, fine, so Obama didn't really know what he was talking about when he briefly visited the Texas border. But at least this was the only thing he ever said or did to mislead America on immigration policies and our crisis at the border, right?
A year later, in November of 2012, it was election time. While everyone was babbling on about Mitt Romney's hatred of Sesame Street and his obsession with Russia (during the debates, Obama accused Mitt Romney of a '1980s' foreign policy even though the Cold War was 'over') immigration wasn't that important to people in the November 2012 election (at least, not as much as it was in the 2016 election). However, Obama again promised to get lawmakers to advocate for “amnesty” which he called “Comprehensive Immigration Reform”.
Obviously Obama won that election, and now he had to come through on his promise. So in December of 2012 Obama signed an executive order for DACA - the Deferred Action Program. The policy would essentially give (temporary) legal status to the "children" of people who illegally migrated to our country. Of course, the people who Obama was directing this policy towards were no longer "children" - they were now adults, after having been in the country for years. Again, this policy only temporarily helped millions of illegal immigrants avoid deportation. Illegal immigration numbers increased substantially after DACA was signed by Obama. Both a DHS intelligence report and a Border Control Study stated DACA was frequently mentioned by detained individuals as their reason for coming over the border.
In May of 2013 President Obama traveled to Central America where he met with leaders from Belize, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. By the end of that summer the number of unaccompanied minors at our border doubled (20,000). Conservative news outlets gave this story a ton of coverage, which is probably why it was barely even mentioned by CNN, CBS, ABC, NBC, HLN or the Washington Post. The White House estimated an 850% increase in the number of Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC's) at the border. In response to this increase in UACs, the Department of Homeland Security posted job openings to facilitate 65,000 Unaccompanied Alien Children.
In January 2014, the Federal Government took bids for vendor contracts to help to handle 65,000 “Unaccompanied Alien Children". The following month Obama made a one-day unscheduled visit to Mexico to meet with President Enrique Peña Nieto. Around the same period of time we also learned from internal administration DHS documents that the “refugee” status loophole was now being used by both criminal cartels, and potentially by Central American government(s) to send prison inmates into the U.S.
In June of 2014 10,000 UACs from El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua crossed over the border. Despite the fact that government documents said otherwise, the White House claimed they never saw these refugee children coming. Internal documents from March 2014 revealed that was a lie.
In July 2014 Obama requested $3.7 billion from Congress to help with the border crisis. Hidden inside the budget bill, Obama sought taxpayer funds for lawyers to aid the UACs and their families.
Obama kept asking for more money to help with the "border crisis" while simultaneously suggesting our borders weren't unsafe. In the meantime, Amnesty International and the United Nations released reports suggesting the migrant children were being raped and exploited by cartels, coyotes and other human traffickers. Obama ignored the obvious consequences of his open border policy and continued to reassure America that the border was a safe place. This process repeated itself a number of times until November 2016 when President Trump was elected.
For years there has been a great disconnect between your average American and the crisis at our border. Don't be surprised - besides a countless number of blatant lies from our federal government and elected officials on this issue, the border is also a place where local journalists and news outlets are prevented from reporting the truth. After all, if a journalist from a border town runs a story about the kidnappings, rape and torture happening at our border, they run the risk of being murdered by cartel gunmen (an almost daily occurrence). And since national news companies like CNN and the Washington Post only regurgitate information from smaller local media outlets, for years we've been almost blind to something that was happening right in our own backyard. But now Americans are waking up from a long deep sleep. We're beginning to see the error of our ways. President Trump, with all of his profanity and personal faux pas, may not be the leader we wanted, but he's definitely the one we deserve.