At what point do congressional leaders wake up and realize they are making fools of themselves? That self-serving tom-foolery and the anti-Trump mania is costing us dearly? Most of America knows true from false – only too well – and they are concerned that we have a porous border. Spoiler alert: They should be.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last night offered adolescent talking points, as if anything they speak – no matter how ill-considered – will be accepted by Americans without scrutiny, since they hold power in Congress and reflexively oppose Trump.
Just stop – and examine stubborn facts. Whatever he has done or not done, the President presented a cogent argument on both moral and security grounds that we have reached a “tipping point,” and requiring meaningful action along the US border.
Democrats responded saying the President appealed to “fear, not facts” and was “manufacturing” concern over the border crisis for political gain. Unpack this.
First, as any member of law enforcement, the military or other security-focused services will tell you, there are conditions under which fear is appropriate. Threats can be real and do exist. The proper response is not to ignore the legitimate threat which stirs fear, but to address it directly and forthrightly.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt did not say, in 1941, that the Axis Powers in World War II represented no threat, or that legitimate fear was not present in hearts of many – only that we needed to assess, meet and beat fear, not ignore or become paralyzed by it. He said, while standing up to threats in his time, “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” He might have added: Ignoring legitimate threats to public safety is also no option.
So, what are the facts – which support President’s Trump’s persistent appeal for border security? What are the facts around border penetration that should cause America – and every Democrat in Congress – to focus more closely on public safety, whatever the perceived political benefit of illegal immigration?
They are compelling. Start with foreign-source drug-related deaths. Certainly, we should do more to prevent drug use, treat drug addiction, and re-anchor ourselves in policies that protect us at home. But ending the present drug crisis requires a hard look at where these drugs – most of them – come from. They come from abroad, and most come through the Southwest border.
How bad is the problem? Pretty bad, the President is spot on. Before leaving in late 2018, former Attorney General Sessions reported: “Last year, the DEA seized enough drugs to kill every man, woman, and child in the United States.” Those drugs come from places like Mexico, Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, Afghanistan, China, and feed identified Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs), according to the State Department.
DEA’s 2018 National Drug Threat Assessment found unprecedented spikes in virtually every foreign-source drug, cocaine and heroin to synthetics like deadly fentanyl, which the President rightly referenced. The crisis – which is directly tied to penetrating our borders – “has reached epidemic levels and currently shows no signs of abating,” said the DEA assessment.
What effect has this one soft border-related issue on American lives? In the quiet of the night, ask any informed governor, mayor, civic leader, emergency room doctor, emergency medical technician, law enforcement officer, or 911 operator in America: The effect has been – and is – devastating to our civic order, to our lives as Americans, and to hundreds of thousands of families across the country.
You may say, “Well, I still hate the President, so I don’t care about this crisis.” Whether you are a Democrat, former hot shot reporter, or Hollywood producer, you should. Here is why: Data released by the Centers for Disease Control DC in 2018 indicates that more than 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2017, a jump of 6.6 percent over last year’s record-breaking numbers – and this is not because a handful of rogue doctors are overprescribing. The President got this data point right, too.
Approximately 30,000 of these deaths involved fentanyl and related foreign-source synthetic analogues alone – much from China and Mexico. Is the President right to call out those countries? Push border security to blunt this gush of foreign drugs? I think most Americans would say – of course.
Another big foreign-source drug killing Americans? Heroin. Where from? Mexico, Colombia, some from the Far East – much across the Southwest border. Should we want to stop the inflow? Of course. Would a high-integrity barrier and deterrence help? Of course.
If you want to get really ugly – understand how terrible this crisis really is – look at data this president sees. Talk to millions of heartbroken families, trapped in foreign-source drug addiction or mourning. Talk to ER doctors, priests, social workers, or medical professionals across America.
Where are these blind members of Congress? What world do they live in? How can they think these foreign-source drugs don’t matter? Who are these amoral leaders, who promote addictive marijuana and look away from foreign-source drugs killing our youngest Americans? Every member of the Democratic caucus should call ONDCP, DEA, State’s INL Bureau, DOD or CIA and ask for the brief – public safety effects of allowing the porous border.
Honestly, do tone-deaf Democrats not care – or just not know? One prominent foreign-source drug mixture is called “gray death,” a mixture of foreign-source opioids – heroin, fentanyl, carfentanil, and U-U47700 – looks like concrete, regularly kills young Americans, now destroying families in Alabama, Indiana, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and New York.
Concurrently, heroin use and availability continue to rise. From 2016-2017, Mexican-source heroin increased by 37 percent, according to DEA. Even with limited resources, Customs and Border Patrol seized 59 percent more heroin in 2017.
So even if you want to ignore 1,100 illegal aliens crossing US borders daily, or heinous personal crimes tied to illegal aliens and our porous border, pause to think about the death, family destruction, rising addiction and personal devaluation that comes from foreign-source drugs.
This is why – just another big reason why – the President is right. We are at a tipping point. Time is now to secure the border. The only thing “manufactured” in this whole debate are foreign-source drugs, and practiced indifference by some in Congress.