The southern border of the United States is little more than a line on a map these days. Migrants are flooding across it in unprecedented numbers, overwhelming the Border Patrol and the immigration courts charged with sorting legitimate claims of asylum from the far greater number of people using it as a wedge for entry.
The word is out: if you want to cut the long line of people waiting legally to immigrate to America, just sneak across the southern border and ask for asylum. Every day now, Customs and Border Protection agents stop more than 3,000 people entering the U.S. illegally and the number has been trending upward rapidly. No one knows how many others slip through undetected.
Almost all of these people fail to meet the definition of a refugee, which is someone with a specific and well-founded fear of persecution in the place they are fleeing. But they have been coached to say the magic words necessary for arresting officers to begin a lengthy adjudication of whether or not they are bona fide refugees deserving asylum — which can take years. Thanks to permissive laws and activist progressive judges — especially those on the renegade Ninth Circuit based in San Francisco — the government must often release these asylum-seekers into America, after which most will evade authorities unless they are caught for another crime.
This is ridiculous. The current broken process is nothing but incentive for more of the same, as people realize once they’re here, they’re here more or less for good, legitimately or not. But there’s a way to remove that incentive:
We should take a page from the past and transport asylum-seekers to our base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The public is most familiar with the use of “Gitmo,” as it is known in military lingo, for detaining high-level terrorists — illegal combatants caught on the battlefield who are awaiting military tribunals (at which the Pentagon has also failed). But Gitmo was used to house two large waves of Haitian immigrants trying to come to America illegally in the 1990s during the administrations of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Keeping them there and repatriating the vast number who were not legitimate asylum-seekers created a disincentive for more to come.
Yes, let’s get the word out that dubious claims of asylum will get you an indefinite stay on Cuba until your hearing, after which you will be returned directly to your country of origin, having never been turned loose within the United States. To top it off, let’s get a complete biometric profile on everyone we have to process this way, and make it clear that future attempts to enter the country illegally will be met with much more unpleasant consequences.
This is hardly cruel and unusual. I’ve been to Naval Station Guantanamo. The weather is lovely, and so is the island. No need to use the prison facilities – just set up large campgrounds within which they’re free to move around until their case is adjudicated. There is no legitimate objection to doing this — the only people who would complain are those within our own country who seek to facilitate this invasion under legal cover. Frankly, I think some of them could use an extended stay in Guantanamo as well. The word ‘treason’ is thrown around lightly these days. But actively undermining one’s own nation and its sovereignty would seem to fit the classic definition pretty well.