After the midterm elections, the going wisdom from the mainstream media was that President Trump had used the foreign caravans making their way from Central America to the United States as a political football. According to this theory, there was no threat or major issue at play, just a racist appeal from the White House. On Sunday, hundreds of migrants attempted to storm the border from Mexico, throwing stones and threatening violence. This time it was hundreds. What happens when it is thousands, or tens of thousands?
The tense standoff near San Diego resulted in border officials firing tear gas into the crowd attempting to illegally gain entry into our country. Clearly in such a situation there can be no vetting of those trying to gain entry, so they must be stopped. Yet for months, Democrats and far too many in the media have pretended this scenario was essentially impossible. Well, here we are.
No matter where one stands on the issue of immigration — I have argued in these pages that it should be almost unlimited — our nation clearly cannot just open the borders to anyone who chooses to walk through. So, when frustrated migrants, perhaps emboldened by irresponsible rhetoric from the American left, simply try to force their way in, how ought our country respond?
It seems fairly obvious that the correct response is the one they met: a forceful one. The right response ensures that our border is secure and cannot be infiltrated by anyone who decides to storm it, throw rocks, and run into America. The situation at the border may well be a humanitarian crisis, but abandoning the rule of law cannot solve such a crisis.
At a time when Obama secretaries of state John Kerry and Hillary Clinton have conceded that Europe may need to limit immigration to maintain its stability, leftist complaints about securing the American border seem especially hypocritical and bizarre. If Europe needs to take stock of how people are or aren’t allowed entry, why on earth should the United States be in that same position?
The answer to this question is that the United States has always been more successful at integrating foreign populations into our nation. Birthright citizenship plays a big role in this, as the children of immigrants feel a connection as citizens to the land they were born in. In myriad ways, the United States has had the most successful immigration record the world has ever seen. It has made us a power the likes of which the world has never seen, but this requires rules.
The familiar figures that deplore everything Trump does are already downplaying this attempt by migrants to storm the border. It’s just a few people, they scoff. Should big, bad America really be afraid of this? Well, yes, we should. The longer we avoid creating a sound immigration policy, the more we will see migrant waves trying to force their way in. What do we do once that happens?
Trump has been mocked for sending military troops to the border. It was called a waste of time and resources. He was chided for keeping these soldiers away from their families on Thanksgiving. But all of a sudden, having serious military leadership on a border that looks like a powder keg makes a ton of sense. Quite frankly, real military leadership is what we need if next week, instead of a few hundred, we have a few thousand people trying to rush the border.
Last week, leftists had a leg to stand on when they argued that Trump and his supporters were overreaching to a nonstory. Today that narrative makes a lot less sense. How would they have us deal with those who attempt to invade — yes, I’ll say invade, because charging into another country without permission is an invasion — what do they want us to do? How are we to deal with this?
Calling Trump and his supporters racists feels good and engenders a feeling of cosmopolitan noblesse oblige, but when the rubber hits the road, we have to be able to defend our borders. Now is the time for those on the left to suggest some solutions to this problem, before thousands or more arrive throwing rocks or worse.
This is a problem that requires a bipartisan solution. The first step is for Democrats to realize that today’s actions by the migrants justifies much of the president’s rhetoric. If they can’t do that, given the obvious situation on the ground, then there is very little hope for solving this problem.