Every once in a while a couple of great stories come together to prove one or more important points. This is one of those occasions.
A significant portion of the illegal immigration problem on our southern border is Central American in origin. For the first time ever, the number of illegals from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Nicargua, collectively, have surpassed those originating in Mexico. Many of them are drawn by the lure of political asylum. In the past, political asylum was restricted to people who had a well founded fear of persecution based on something like race or religion or political beliefs. And the persecution had to be on the part of the government. Now political asylum is on the table if you’re the victim of domestic violence or drug cartels are operating in your country. And so you get stories like this:
In a small town tucked in the hills outside Tegucigalpa, there is a stuffed gray bunny rabbit that knows a little girl’s secrets. “I tell him all my things,” she says. “About how I’m doing, and when I feel sad.” She feels sad a lot lately. “I start thinking about things that I shouldn’t be thinking,” she says.
There are a lot of things she shouldn’t be thinking. She is 12 years old and just weeks away from giving birth to a baby.
Sofia and her mom told me her story when we met at a women’s shelter in mid-April. Sofia (like others interviewed for this story, she asked me not to use her real name) was raped by a family member of her mom’s boyfriend. She still doesn’t totally understand what pregnancy means or what childbirth entails, but she knows the delivery is looming, and that scares her. “At first, she said that she did not want to have the baby,” Sofia’s mom told me. “She said that she wanted to commit suicide.” When doctors told Sofia she was pregnant and explained that pregnancy meant she was going to have a baby, Sofia, in her soft, small voice, asked whether she could have a doll instead.
When Sofia’s mom found out about the rape, she reported it to the police, and now the man who did it is in jail. But his family kept threatening them, and Sofia and her mom have good reason to worry about what happens once he’s out. Most crimes like this—more than 90 percent—aren’t even prosecuted in Honduras. The few women who do see their attackers go to jail are offered little protection when those sentences end. “If he comes out,” Sofia’s mom says, “I am afraid for my life and her life, too.”
The story goes on to list a handful of anecdotes, because the plural of anecdote in political reporting is “data,” showing how women from Central America aren’t safe there and because the aren’t safe they should be granted asylum in the US.
The second story is this past weekend’s dustup between President Trump and Democrat Representative and race-pimp, Elijah Cummings. Trump, rightfully, in my opinion, called out Cummings over the fact that that one of the most significant areas of Cummings’s madly gerrymandered district
is overwhelmingly black West Baltimore. If you’ve ever watch The Wire you’ve seen a pretty faithful representation of West Baltimore in the allegorical “Hamsterdam” area.
Here are a couple of vignettes on the level of violence in Elijah Cummings’s district.
— Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) July 25, 2019
— Cameron Gray (@Cameron_Gray) July 27, 2019
How do these stories come together? I saw this tweet by Intercept writer Lee Fang.
Attorneys for Hondurans fleeing to the US routinely cite the gang-fueled murder rate — 43 people per 100k in 2017— as a reason for seeking asylum protection here. Baltimore has a higher murder rate of 57 per 100k. It’s a crisis few politicians address w sincereity or compassion.
— Lee Fang (@lhfang) July 28, 2019
To be clear, I have no bromance with Fang, quite the opposite. Back in his days of writing for ThinkProgress, he had a tiny little hard-on of Erick. Here are links to old RedState posts about Fang. But, I was intrigued and found that not only was he correct, but Baltimore looks positively safe alongside East St. Louis, IL.
So, if Baltimore has a higher murder rate than Honduras and people from Honduras are getting political asylum in the US because of the endemic violence, what the hell should we be doing for residents of Baltimore?