The issue of illegal immigration at the southern US border has been a political ‘football’ for decades. There is no doubt at all that illegal drugs are entering the southern border and that illegal immigration is a major issue in many other ways, too. Many other crimes are committed yearly by people who enter illegally, including violent crimes. This is despite a million people who enter the US legally every year. There is a different sort of crisis that isn’t spoken about often, having to do with illegal immigrants at the southern border, though.
The current drive is to build a wall on the US-Mexico border, similar to the wall Mexico has at its own southern border. There are some legislators who are trying to block the construction of the wall, usually for political reasons. However, building such a wall could help with dealing with the crisis I’m referring to. Neither political party seems willing to even talk about the crisis as if neither side really cares. Of course, they do, but judging from how little is said about it, it sure seems like they don’t.
What crisis am I referring to? Let me put it this way. Periodically, there is a news report of a group of people who’ve been found trapped while trying to enter the US illegally. Although such reports aren’t common, the people are usually in bad shape by the time they are found by border patrol or law enforcement. Sometimes, some of these people even die and people in the US are understandably outraged at the tragedy of those deaths.
As it turns out, a lot more people die each year when trying to cross into the US illegally than most people know about. Only counting those deaths that are reported, around 400 people die each year when trying to gain illegal entry into the US. No, these aren’t killed by border patrol, vigilantes, or drug cartels. Most die from exposure to the elements. In other words, they die from extreme heat or cold. Quite a few also drown when trying to get across the Rio Grande.
That number is just those that are reported. The actual number of deaths at the border could be far higher. Often, by the time bodies are found, it is difficult to tell who the people were or what they were doing at the time of death.
What is even more tragic is that a large portion of the deaths are of children and this number is increasing. This is likely because of the increase in children who are attempting to cross into the US without being accompanied by adults.
This is a lot of needless deaths and there is little doubt that a wall would decrease this number. However, politicians and the news media don’t talk about it, so relatively few people in the US even know about it. All they basically hear about are the political talking points. That is sad because while we are hearing those talking points, people are dying.