President Donald J. Trump is taking American immigration policy in the right direction, despite his administration’s clumsy execution of reforms.
When one looks beyond the bureaucratic bungling and noisy protests, there were legitimate reasons for Trump’s actions. The refugee ban in particular, might be the right policy; in fact it can be easily argued that Trump is not going far enough in restricting that form of immigration.
Perhaps he should be considering a permanent ban on the admission of all refugees to the U.S. Such a policy would be fairer and more ethical than simply barring Muslims. It would also be less antagonistic to other countries and not in violation of America’s traditions of separation of church and state.
There are actually some very valid reasons to ban or severely restrict the admission of refugees into the United States. The open door policy for refugees in Europe has created a humanitarian disaster. The number of refugees who drowned trying to reach the European Union in 2016 may have exceeded 10,000, according to estimates from the International Organization for Migration.
Why Trump’s Refugee Ban may not Go Far Enough
An open door in the US might lead to a similar catastrophe in the Caribbean. Such a disaster is likely if Venezuela’s government collapses completely; and that nation falls into all out civil war between Marxists and capitalists. Another ticking time bomb is Cuba, where ugly racial tensions between white and black residents are lurking just below the surface of the Castro brothers’ Communist utopia.
Trump might be setting himself up for a major refugee crisis by saying he would allow in Christian refugees but not Muslims. Given his logic; Donald would have no choice but to let in hundreds of thousands of Venezuelan or Cuban refugees, because they are Christian.
Beyond the humanitarian nightmare there is the sheer number of refugees in the world. There were around 65 million refugees in the world in 2016, The Guardian reported. America obviously cannot take them all or assimilate huge numbers of people. The sheer logistics of moving all those people are insurmountable, so would providing jobs, housing, education, healthcare and social services for them.
The Problems Created by the Open Door
Picking and choosing which refugees to let in and which to leave in the camps creates an even greater dilemma. There are ethical considerations: the greatest of which is it right to have politicians and bureaucrats deciding who lives and who dies.
There are also political problems, allowing in large numbers of refugees gives rise to extremist and racist political movements. It can lead to hate crimes and other forms of violence and hooliganism.
Then of course there are the other security concerns. All an Islamic terrorist would have to do to get around Trump’s ban is to carry a Bible and claim to be a “persecuted Christian.” How is the average customs inspector supposed to tell the difference between a genuine convert and a liar? Does anybody really want Homeland Security evaluating immigrants’ spiritual lives?
America does not Need More Ghettos
The Islamic communities in the United States are fairly well assimilated because most Muslim immigrants here are well-educated middle class professionals.
The US has avoided the situation in Europe where some countries like France, have large communities of poorly educated working class Muslims. Many of them live in ghettos cut off from society that lead to a hothouse environment where extremism flourishes.
Allowing mass entry of refugees might lead to the development of such ghettos in the United States, which is the last thing America needs. The United States already has vast numbers of poor, badly educated, isolated, angry and embittered young men. Many rural areas and suburbs are full of angry young white men, while many cities are full of angry young African American men.
Bringing large numbers of refugees into a country that is already experiencing intense social unrest is a recipe for increased violence. Rioters burned cars and smashed shop windows in Washington D.C. during Trump’s inauguration.
Can Trump Really Reform Visas
Another sector of immigration in desperate need of reform; that Trump reportedly plans to address, is the controversial H-1B visa program. The H-1B program was set up to allow immigrants with needed skills to work in the United States.
News reports indicate that some large companies have abused the program for their benefit. The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) laid off 250 IT workers at its theme park in Florida in 2015 and replaced them with immigrants from India that worked at a lower price, The Atlantic alleged. The New York Times even charged that Disney had American workers train their H-1B replacements before laying them off.
Most of the visas go to large global outsourcing firms that provide services to big business rather than small tech startups that might benefit from cheaper help, The New York Times alleged. A Times headline even stated: “Large Companies Game H-1B Visa Program, Costing the U.S. Jobs.”
It is obvious that America’s immigration system is badly broken. Current policies cost Americans jobs and create the potential for humanitarian and security nightmares. The question that needs to be answered now is can Trump fix it, or will he make the situation worse with his clumsy policies.