by Michael Cutler
The real significance of Trump’s immigration speech and his meeting with President Peña Nieto.
Donald Trump demonstrated true chutzpah in accepting an invitation from Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to meet with him.
On August 31, 2016 Trump met Peña Nieto just hours before addressing an enthusiastic crowd of supporters in Arizona where he laid out his ten-point plan to address the immigration crisis that impacts so many of the challenges and threats that America faces today.
It was politically courageous for Trump to meet with the Mexican President. After nearly eight years of the feckless Obama administration, his demonstration of strength and focus at that meeting was refreshing.
Peña Nieto has compared Trump to Hitler and Mussolini, and Trump has, for the past year, made it clear that he opposed the policies of the Mexican government that have resulted in so many criminals, gangs and narcotics flowing from Mexico into the United States.
The meeting was a gamble but it paid off. As President John F. Kennedy said during his inaugural address,
“So let us begin anew--remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.”While President Kennedy was referencing the ongoing tensions with the former Soviet Union and our relationship with Mexico is hardly as adversarial as was our relationship with the USSR, Mexico is separated from the United States by the longest border that divides the First World from the Third World, thus creating huge economic pressures on that border.
Mexico is an important trade partner of the United States. However, a huge component of that trade is illegal and involves illegal aliens, narcotics, weapons and money flowing across the border in violation of our laws.
America's relationship with Mexico is complex, but highly important. There is no way for our nation or our leaders to ignore Mexico and the challenges that the border creates for the United States. Clearly Trump understands these factors and, to all appearances, pulled off the meeting with President Peña Nieto successfully.
Then came his speech in Phoenix, Arizona, where Trump clearly articulated his solutions to the immigration crisis. Although he has a propensity to speak in sweeping generalities, his lengthy speech on immigration included a specific list of ten items that need to be effectively addressed.
What stood out in each element of his ten-point plan was that his goal was to finally create an immigration system that has true integrity and that put the interests of America and of American workers first.
What a refreshing concept.
The notion of putting the needs of Americans first transcends political differences.
Traditionally, the Democratic Party has portrayed itself as the party of hard-working Americans. Yet the immigration policies of the Obama administration has encouraged, aided and abetted a huge influx of foreign workers that has displaced millions of American workers and suppressed wages across a broad spectrum of industries. This includes highly educated middle-class workers, as well as those workers who have little formal education.
This has been by clear design.
I addressed this ongoing betrayal of Americans in my articles, “The Wage Equality Deception: The veiled attack on the middle class” and “Immigration ‘Reform’: Engineered Destruction of the Middle Class.”
From the first day that Trump began his quest for the presidency he made the failures of the immigration system the center-point of his campaign. Indeed, the multiple failures of the immigration system have undermined national security and public safety. Those failures of the immigration system have also flooded America with millions of workers who have displaced American workers and negatively impacted wages and working conditions for Americans.
Consequently millions of middle-class, tax paying American consumers have been driven into poverty and became dependent on costly government economic safety-net programs. They stopped paying taxes and lost their disposable incomes, creating a further drag on the U.S. economy.
Foreign workers, both those who are working legally in the United States, as well as those who are working illegally, send hundreds of billions of dollars back to their home countries in the form of remittances and by other means. This further drains money from the U.S. economy and increases our national debt.
Amnesty proposals, which would legalize millions of illegal aliens, would immediately give those illegal aliens the right to bring their minor children and spouses to the United States. Imagine the harm that flooding America with millions of additional foreign students, who are unable to read, write or speak English, would have on America's struggling schools and their students.
Trump's plans to finally secure our borders and enforce our immigration laws from within the interior of the United States would make our cities safer and would also help Americans to find decent jobs.
Transnational gangs and the narcotics they traffic is behind much of the violent crime in the United States. The United States is currently experiencing the worst heroin epidemic ever. Heroin is not produced in the United States and is completely illegal. Every gram of heroin has to be smuggled into the United States. This is not only happening along the U.S./Mexican border, but at our seaports and international airports.
At the beginning of his campaign Trump's focus on immigration centered around building a wall to secure the U.S./Mexican border. That border must certainly be made secure. However, as I have often noted, a wall on the Mexican border is the equivalent of a wing on an airplane. Without a wing an airplane most certainly will not fly. However, a wing by itself goes nowhere.
Trump's plans went literally and figuratively well beyond America's southwest border.
Immigration is a multifaceted system and each failure of the immigration system is the equivalent of a hole in the bottom of a boat. Simply plugging one hole on the bottom of a boat will not prevent it from winding up at the bottom of the lake. In fact, plugging all but one of the holes on the bottom of the boat will cause it to sink.
All of the holes need to be addressed effectively. The gaping hole in the immigration system that has almost never been discussed is the lack of the enforcement of our immigration laws from within the interior of the United States.
That hole is a huge and gaping breach in the immigration system, and during his speech, Donald Trump made it clear that effective enforcement of our immigration laws from within the interior of the United States would also be an element of his plans to finally fix our broken immigration system.
Hillary Clinton and the mainstream media have made derisive remarks about Trump's speech and his plans to finally imbue the immigration system with integrity, and it is important to confront their lies and propaganda. (We have heard much of this nonsense before, spewed journalists and by Democrats and many Republicans alike.)
The issue of compassion is often invoked. The notion of “splitting up families” is a frequent complaint, so let's take this one on first.
It is important to note that Trump effectively addressed the issue of families being separated by talking about American families permanently separated by their loved ones having been killed by illegal aliens.
Children born in the United States to illegal alien parents are generally dual-citizens. They can travel with their parents back to the country of citizenship of their parents, if their parents were deported, secure in the knowledge that as Americans they can, whenever they wish, return to the United States. Alternatively, these children can live with friends or family members in the United States and freely visit their parents in their home countries.
Families of illegal aliens become split up in the first place when the alien – usually the male member of a family, heads to the United States to work illegally to help support his family. Children reared in single-parent homes generally do not do as well as kids raised by both parents. When illegal aliens are hired by unscrupulous employers, they are coerced into working for substandard wages under substandard conditions. Indeed, those conditions are often inhumane and deadly.
Simply stated, exploitation is not compassionate.
Mexico has a huge economy and its people are industrious. An estimated 10% of the Mexican population lives and works in the United States because the Mexican oligarchy has a tight grip on the Mexican economy, leaving many Mexicans to live in abject poverty. Mexico uses the United States as a “safety valve” to keep those who might demand change in Mexico occupied in the United States.
The remittances flowing from the United States to Mexico by those workers constitute one of the greatest sources of revenue for the Mexican economy.
Many other countries also have come to depend on those remittance flows as well.
Incidentally, globally, India receives the greatest amount of money than any other country from its citizens who are working in countries around the world -- often in high-tech industries such as computer programming.
The administration's immigration policies have resulted in hundreds of thousands of criminal aliens being released into communities around the United States. Most often these thugs live and ply their violent “trades” within the ethnic immigrant communities. This is not limited to Latin America, but includes every ethnic immigrant community.
Where is the compassion here?
How far off course has America gone that Donald Trump, a candidate for the Presidency, is likely to be challenged by Hillary and the mainstream media for unambiguously declaring that our immigration system must serve the needs of the citizens of the United States?
Effectively addressing the immigration crisis is not about “Left” or “Right,” but about right or wrong. This is something that all Americans, irrespective of political orientation, should be in complete agreement about.
Michael Cutler is a retired Senior Special Agent of the former INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service) whose career spanned some 30 years. He served as an Immigration Inspector, Immigration Adjudications Officer and spent 26 years as an agent who rotated through all of the squads within the Investigations Branch. For half of his career he was assigned to the Drug Task Force. He has testified before well over a dozen congressional hearings, provided testimony to the 9/11 Commission as well as state legislative hearings around the United States and at trials where immigration is at issue. He hosts his radio show, “The Michael Cutler Hour,” on Friday evenings on BlogTalk Radio. His personal website is http://michaelcutler.net/.
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