The situation at the southern border is only getting worse, and when it comes to solutions, there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel. It has been challenging to gain insight into the extent of the problem primarily due to a disturbing lack of transparency on the part of the Biden administration, whose actions caused the migrant crisis.
But the crisis has caused severe problems for those affected, and if the White House does not start taking the issue seriously, the consequences could become even more dire. As it stands today, there are several ways the situation has become problematic.
First and foremost, one must focus on the death toll. On Friday, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott predicted that deaths on the southern border would increase, especially as we get closer to the summer months. In an interview with Fox News’ “America Reports,” he said the deaths that are occurring now “would not be happening if the Biden administration had not opened up the border and been completely unprepared for the massive influx of the young migrant children that they are enticing to come across the border,” Breitbart News reported.
“These horrific images and tragic deaths, as well as assaults that we’re seeing right now, they would not be happening if the Biden administration had not opened up the border and been completely unprepared for the massive influx of the young migrant children that they are enticing to come across the border.
Those deaths that you’re talking about, those bodies that were found, that is only going to increase as the summer months get very hot. We see the deaths of the migrants coming across the border really increase in July and August, when typically, the temperatures down there can be 100 or above 100 degrees.
The temperatures are mild right now. The terrain, as well as the temperature, will be far worse in the coming months and we believe that, unfortunately, the deaths will increase in the coming months.”
Just recently, Border Patrol found two women at the southern border who had attempted to make the trek into the U.S. While they were able to save one of these women, the other succumbed.
#USBP Laredo Sector Horse Patrol Unit & Laredo West agents rescued an unresponsive female in the brush, performed critical lifesaving techniques and was transported quickly to a local hospital. #savinglives @USBPChiefLRT pic.twitter.com/5NAnKjZJxX
— CBP South Texas (@CBPSouthTexas) April 8, 2021
The Washington Examiner spoke with residents of border towns in Arizona. Gila Bend Mayor Chris Riggs noted that Border Patrol was releasing migrant families in his town. Many of these individuals were not even given court dates to have their cases adjudicated. But he noted that these people will have tremendous difficulty finding shelter in other towns that might accommodate them.
“To drop people in basically the middle of nowhere, it’s 30 miles to the next type of town, and that’s 30 miles of open desert,” he said. “So, especially come July and August, we’re going to be finding bodies.”
A local business owner echoed the mayor’s concerns. “They are going to die out here,” he said. “It’s too hot.”
Unfortunately, Gov. Abbott’s prediction will likely come true. It is a situation we have seen in previous years, when migrants make the journey to the southern border during the hottest months. This is yet another reason why it was a horrible idea for President Biden and his team to encourage migrants to make the trip to the southern border. Repealing Trump’s immigration policies was also not the best of ideas.
Next, we have the issue of human trafficking, which has been getting increasingly worse. The forced labor and sex trafficking have become an industry that rakes in billions of dollars each year. Individuals working with drug cartels and trafficking rings regularly prey upon migrants trying to get into the U.S. to obtain better jobs.
The Heritage Foundation explained how the trafficking industry functions in the realm of immigration:
Parents are paying murderous drug cartels thousands of dollars to smuggle their children across the border. Some children are traveling across two or three countries to get here. Some have died during the rough and dangerous crossing, others have been abused by the smugglers, and some have been sold into human trafficking networks. We’ve also seen children being “rented” and “recycled” across the border several times to help adult males gain easier entry into the U.S. by claiming that the children are their own.
Criminal organizations made up to $14 million a day in February by trafficking migrant women, children, and families across the southern border. Traffickers use several different methods to place migrants in bondage. Some pose as smugglers helping them get across the border to obtain employment. Upon arriving, they sell migrants into forced labor, where they are coerced, tricked, or threatened into working for little to no income. They typically work on farms or in the houses of the wealthy as maids.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) estimated that these modern-day slavers made about $411.5 million in February. Migrants typically pay between $5,000 and $9,000 to be taken to the southern border. The Biden administration’s mishandling of the problem will likely result in more men, women, and children being sold into slavery or sexually trafficked.
One of the issues that has become a focal point is the treatment of unaccompanied minors who are sent to travel alone from their home countries. About 19,000 migrant children were picked up trying to cross the border in March. The influx has become such a problem that federal authorities are having trouble housing them.
Migrant children have been living in horrid conditions due to overcrowding. The Washington Post reported:
The strain of a sudden, sharp spike in apprehensions became clear as Department of Homeland Security officials and Democratic and Republican lawmakers toured the El Paso sector of the border and saw hundreds of children packed into large, open rooms and families streaming across the border at night.
Conditions were even worse hundreds of miles to the southeast in the Rio Grande Valley, a court-appointed monitor told a federal judge Friday, saying the crowding in Border Patrol facilities was “profound,” “not sustainable” and at risk of unraveling.
Several government officials have noted the severity of the problem. The Post noted that “Paul Wise, a court-appointed monitor who reported on conditions for migrant children as part of a long-running lawsuit Friday, told U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee in Los Angeles that he witnessed ‘significant overcrowding’ in facilities in Donna, Tex., and Border Patrol stations last week.”
Sen. Tom Barrasso (R-WY), in an appearance on Fox News last week, said the children were “packed like sardines” in facilities run by Border Patrol. The lawmaker also stated that he was instructed to delete the pictures he took of the facility when he visited with a delegation of other senators.
“We were told to delete the pictures,” Barrasso explained. “No one did. You’ve seen the video coming out of all of these kids crammed together under the foil blankets, huddling together.”
Some of the facilities in which migrant children are being held have not been safe. Gov. Abbott, on Wednesday, also called for the closing of a federal facility in San Antonio after allegations of sexual assault surfaced.
The complaints about sexual assault were reported early on Wednesday to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. The allegations will be investigated by the Department of Public Safety.
Lastly, the cost of the migrant crisis has been disturbingly high. Breitbart News reported:
According to the latest HHS data, they hold 16,000 unaccompanied children and another 4,000 are about to be transferred from Border Patrol custody. The HHS estimates the cost to detain a child in the newest facilities, which they refer to as Emergency Intake Sites (EIS), is $775 per day. In other long-term facilities, they indicate that cost to be approximately $275 per day. The temporary shelter numbers are those in excess of 13,500 permanent facility beds, meaning the agency is spending nearly $4 million a day on long-term UACs and nearly $2 million per day on EIS shelters. This does not account for the expenditures by the Border Patrol to detain the additional 4,000 UACs.
If the Biden administration continues to bungle its approach to the migrant crisis, each of the issues listed here will only become more pronounced. But the most serious of these is the death count and the human trafficking issue. The people attempting to cross the border are losing their lives and being victimized by traffickers because the president essentially invited them to this fate. His public embrace of open borders policies is what caused this situation. Unfortunately, it does not appear that he has any answers for fixing it.