In 1980, singer Neil Diamond recorded a song that celebrated American immigration, first in the early 1900s and then more recently. The song included this chorus:

“On the boats and on the planes

They’re coming to America

Never looking back again

They’re coming to America.”

The song makes no distinction between the legal and orderly immigration of the early 20th century and the chaotic and illegal immigration that characterizes today’s movement of mostly Central Americans into the country.

Last Sunday, thousands of Hondurans formed caravans in an attempt to violate Mexico’s southern border on their way to our southern border. Police and soldiers wearing riot gear tried to block them, but the migrants broke through, undeterred by tear gas and batons.

They are likely coming because they are hearing that President Biden plans to deport fewer of them and because relatives have encouraged them to make the risky journey. They are coming because of poverty and crime in Honduras and other countries. Many of them had their homes destroyed by hurricanes.

Biden has also said he will not continue construction of Donald Trump’s border wall, which the Trump administration touted as having a significant deterrent effect on undocumented people crossing the border. That, too, sends a “y’all come” signal southward.

The prospect of a human tide coming to America now becomes very real. And the promise of U.S. citizenship for the 11 million undocumented already here can only serve as an additional enhancement for even more to come.

Interviewed on TV networks, some in the caravan say they want to come to America for jobs. What about those Americans who are out of work because of the pandemic? Shouldn’t U.S. citizens be first on the list for any available jobs? If migrants are illegally allowed in, or manage to get in, what signal will this send to the thousands — perhaps millions — who will come and what additional burden will that place on American taxpayers and social services?

I have been exploring possible travel to countries in Europe and Central and South America, hoping to break free from all the lockdowns and regulations in this country. Many of them are closed to American citizens. These countries apparently don’t want anyone bringing COVID with them. Shouldn’t that also be a concern for the U.S. government?

How many migrants seeking to come to America are infected with COVID and will aid in its spread? How many are gang members who will add to the crime problems in major U.S. cities?

The left claims Donald Trump is responsible for the Jan. 6 rioting at the U.S. Capitol because he “incited” the crowd to insurrection with his rhetoric about a “stolen” election. Why, then, can’t Biden’s language about easing the path to America and gaining citizenship equally be a cause and effect?

Throughout history, uncontrolled immigration without assimilation has contributed to the collapse of other superpowers. The United States does not enjoy special protection from a similar fate. Some on the left cynically believe these migrants can be turned into Democrat voters and along with censoring conservative beliefs on social media and other platforms and creating states out of Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia the Republican Party and all opposition to their agenda can be squashed.

Neil Diamond’s song was meant as a patriotic celebration of America’s “melting pot.” Given the chaos that will come if Biden’s promise is not retracted, that “pot” is likely to boil over, causing irreversible harm.

Readers may email Cal Thomas at tcaeditors@tribpub.com. Look for Cal Thomas’ new book “America’s Expiration Date: The Fall of Empires and Superpowers and the Future of the United States” (HarperCollins/Zondervan).

(1) comment

Donald Kershayn

Mr. Thomas, I do not know who you are, but I have seen your particular bias and heard rhetoric and invective similar to yours before, from others who are patently partisan in their viewpoints and attitudes, especially toward immigrants and Democrats. I am neither an immigrant nor a Democrat, but I deal with facts, so let me get to them, as you seem to have forgotten some of them.

First, you stated that these Hispanic immigrants “are likely coming because they are hearing that President Biden plans to deport fewer of them.” During Biden’s tenure as VP, President Obama deported over 3 million illegal immigrants. In researching Biden’s position on immigration, I found that this quote from Time is probably a good summary of Biden’s policies right now:

“Most deportations will be halted for 100 days beginning on Friday, one of several steps the Biden Administration is taking to reevaluate immigration enforcement strategy…“ Biden has only been in office for six days, therefore I have no issues with him doing a thorough review of what the TRUE situation is with immigration, listen to his staff on how to proceed, and proceed with a plan that actually has a chance of being successful.

You wrote, “Biden has also said he will not continue construction of Donald Trump’s border wall, which the Trump administration touted as having a significant deterrent effect on undocumented people crossing the border.” Would you be surprised to hear that Trump’s border wall was NOT a success because a physical border alone is not a deterrent? In fact, only 15 miles of NEW border wall have gone up and 350 miles of REPLACEMENT wall as of October, 2020, according to CBP. This, for a southern border that ranges a total of 1,954 miles. I know, I was stationed at Ft. Huachuca on the Mexico-Arizona border and saw how little walls deter.

Would you be surprised to hear that “the number of foreign-born people living in the US has risen by about 3% from 43.7 million the year before Mr. Trump's election to about 45 million last year.” This is based on US Census Bureau estimates. Additionally, according to Homeland Security, temporary working visas were up 5% under Trump. So, in truth, Trump’s touted border wall and immigration policies have done little to stem the tide of illegal immigration.

Additionally, you wrote, “The left claims Donald Trump is responsible for the Jan. 6 rioting at the U.S. Capitol because he “incited” the crowd to insurrection with his rhetoric about a “stolen” election.” That is also incorrect. Both the right and the left are agreeing that Trump has responsibility for the insurrection, along with other Republicans such as Hawley, and have taken a stance on that statement. Your opinion as to whether it is true or not is just that, opinion, not based on facts anymore than your opinion piece on immigration is based in fact.

As the grandson and husband of LEGAL immigrants, I believe in immigration from all over the globe, However I also believe that any immigration must be legal, in which the immigrants go through the same legal processes my family had to go through. According to Pew Research, Mexican immigration consists of 25% in 2018, while Asian immigration was 28% at the same time. Why did you pick on one set of immigrants, rather than another? I think we know the answer.

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