I’m a simple man, uneducated in the complexities of international diplomacy. Sorta like John Kerry. I admit that. I know solving knotty problems is never as easy as it was when we used to sit around in the hallways of the college dorms playing pinochle all night. We solved every world problem in those days. Adults were so stupid.
But some problems do seem to have simple solutions if you take a step back and accept hard truths.
America cannot solve the world’s problems. The folks who say that we have a moral duty to care for these children no matter what it costs forget that Jesus admonished his disciples that the poor would be with us always. (Matthew 26:11.) They also ignore the demographics of the “children”; the media likes to show pictures of youngsters who have crossed the borders, but the majority are older teens. Since we cannot save all the children, we have to set limits. Thus it’s not a matter of setting limits, it’s a matter of where we set limits. We are talking a matter of degree here. When you say, “So, we should have open borders?” and they say, without thinking, “Yes,” you answer back, “and where will we house them and school their children and give them jobs…” Obviously they have not thought it through. As they sat on the floor playing pinochle all night.
- We forget that we are not the only nation who has a stake here. We act as if we are. What about the countries these children originate from? President Obama is going to speak with the leaders of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. But what is he going to say? “Come get your kids.” Doubtful. “Fix your countries.” Probably not. “We need to get to the facts as to why this is happening and form a committee to make recommendations for action the international community can get behind.” Ah, that’s our president talking now!
- It is costing between $250 and $1000 a day to house and care for each illegal (the higher figure if outside services are used, the lower figure if government services like military bases and resources are used).
- The government is bussing and flying the illegals around the country to locate sufficient housing to maintain them pending processing before they are released with a paper giving them a court date for them to reappear for a hearing. Make of that what you may.
- As many as 90,000 illegals under the age of 17 are expected to be apprehended (read “turn themselves in”; most want to be captured) at the border this year. If the trend continues, 120,000 are expected to turn themselves in next year.
- A May 2014 survey conducted by the Border Patrol of apprehended illegals showed that 95% believed that once they were in the U.S. they would receive “permisos” to stay, amnesty under a “new U.S. law”. You know, the one where President Obama announced in 2012 in his executive order that he would not be enforcing part of the immigration law. Oh, I know, how can you remember one out of so many? But they heard down in Honduras. And Guatemala. And El Salvador.
OK. So, here I was, rocking on the front porch and scratchin’ Ol’ Yallar behind the ear and I had a thought. It hurt some, so I wrote it down to get it out’n my head.
Here’s my little plan.
- Interview these folks. The interview consists of one question: “Where are you from?”
- House them on a military compound staffed and guarded by our wonderful National Guard folks. This frees the Border Patrol to actually, you know, patrol the Border.
- Clean them up. Feed them. Treat them medically. Give them new clothes, a backpack full of a couple days change of clothes, treats, toys for the young’ns. I suggest Homer Simpson backpacks with a big “D’Oh!” on the back.
- Put them on a military transport back to their country of origin. Shouldn’t take more than 2 days to arrange transport. We own a lot of transports. Maybe their countries could pay for the gas for the return trip? Maybe? Could Kerry negotiate that one? I say yes. He’s that good.
- Turn them over to their government.
- Let them worry about feeding them, housing them, and getting them back to their families, because it isn’t our problem. They are their citizens.
- Total Cost: less than $1000 per person. $90,000,000 for the year. Savings over President Obama’s plan: over $3.6 billion. Say it costs twice as much (this is the government in operation): Savings of $3.5 billion.
- Added bonus: It would create such a furor in each of these countries that everyone there would know that it was a waste of time to try to enter the US illegally.
But, you say, “Lester,” I hear you say, “What if their parents are here illegally in the U.S., and want their kids with them?” I’m all for family reunification. They were able to come up with $10,000 to get a coyote to smuggle the kid to the U.S., they can afford transportation back to their country of origin to be with their family. Bueno! Reunificación! I am a man of family values.
Senator Cruz, as soon as I get around to setting up a tip jar (do blogs still have those?) you can put a few million in it as a thank you.