It’s time to admit the caravan is dangerous

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Jessica Parsons

Consistently, right-leaning individuals are accused of being anti-immigrant or even anti-human, just because we want to protect our borders, whether that means stopping the caravan or wanting to build a wall. It’s time for this false accusation to cease.

Likewise, one can argue that left-leaning individuals are accused for not caring about the safety of the American people, perhaps because they easily welcome foreigners into the country with open arms, regardless of who they are. This accusation needs to stop as well, and researching statistics should be encouraged to everyone, especially when interpreting the incoming caravan and what danger it may entail.

In many ways, the caravan from Honduras is a dangerous threat to the American people. On Oct. 29, 2018, President Trump tweeted, “Many Gang Members and some very bad people are mixed into the Caravan heading to our Southern Border. Please go back, you will not be admitted into the United States unless you go through the legal process. This is an invasion of our Country and our Military is waiting for you!”

Putting aside his grammar usage, his point is clear: You will not be admitted into the United States unless you go through the legal process. Our country is willing to welcome immigrants, as long as they are admitted legally.

So, is Trump right in saying that this caravan really consists of gang members? Absolutely. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) reported there are at least 600 known criminals in this caravan, which made up 10 percent of the caravan at the time. A department spokesman added, “The fact that Border Patrol arrested a murderer within the first caravan-related apprehensions at our southern border proves how real the threat of the caravan is to our national security and public safety.”

America is a country of laws, made to protect us. Anything that stands contrary will be shut down, respectively. We have laws for a reason.

Before we get into specifics, let’s examine the argument that there’s an equal representation of women, children and men traveling in the caravan. An MSNBC reporter, on the grounds of an inner sanctum in Tijuana, Mexico, proved to the audience, “The truth is…we’ll show you…the majority of them are men.” This followed the news anchor’s suggestion that the majority were not men. In this case, she was wrong.

Tear gas. Do you Wildcats recall NMU Professor Sojourn protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL), where Trump ordered the use of water cannons and tear gas against protesters? I know what you’re thinking, “How dare the Trump administration do this to that poor woman and child in the caravan.” Let’s look at the facts. During the Obama

administration, data from the DHS showed federal agents used tear gas on the border 26 times in 2012, 27 times in 2013, 15 times in 2014, eight times in 2015 and three times in 2016. That compares to 18 times in 2017 and 29 times in 2018 during the Trump administration. My point is this: breaking into a country illegally or participating in illegal activity has consequences. Do law-breaking protesters not understand that? Did those of the caravan think throwing stones at our border patrol would be met with a free pass into the country?

Some may say, “Aren’t they just looking to seek asylum?” Well, it’s hard to know which of the thousands are intentionally escaping their home because of danger. That is why we have the laws that we do, which would typically vet incoming immigrants to assess their safety and need. That is equality. Otherwise, it is unfair to those who went through the legal processes to immigrate here legally and responsibly.

If seeking asylum is the goal of this caravan, why rush into our border, refusing to cooperate and even go as far as to assault our border patrol? Is that really the kind of person you want as your neighbor? Is this what America stands for? Some seem to welcome a criminal with open arms, but in this case, mine are staying closed.