In the recent circus of ridiculous promises and wild-eyed predictions of terror known as the campaign trail to the 2016 U.S. presidential election, the star campaign position of this freak show has undoubtedly been the deportation of all illegal immigrants residing in America. Trumpeted (see what I did there?) as a necessary plan that is feasible to accomplish in two years time, it’s more likely to sink America than keep her afloat. Let’s ignore for a second whether or not having an illegal immigrant-free country is even beneficial, and focus instead on the disastrous process for achieving this goal.
First, it’s important to note that mass deportation has happened before. Mainly during the 1930s, millions of Mexicans and Mexican-Americans were expelled through a variety of methods. Hundreds of thousands of these were, in fact, U.S. citizens. If such a mass deportation scheme were given a go a second time around, this number would undoubtedly be much higher, with many citizens either financially dependent on their non-citizen relatives, unable to provide proper documentation in time, or simply caught up in a convoluted paperwork error. This becomes all the more messy when you consider the lengths to which illegal immigrants have gone to falsify paperwork in order to work, drive, etc. All in all, this means deporting countless innocent American citizens who have committed no crime whatsoever.
Second, the numbers in this case have climbed to unmanageable levels. Illegal immigrants alone number around 11 million. This is almost as many as the total population of Asian-Americans. In other words, we’re talking about a significant demographic, one that cannot simply be eliminated without major repercussions. Next, at current levels, the U.S. Border Patrol numbers around 20,000 with a budget of over $3.5 billion. That’s around 550 illegal immigrants for every single border patrol agent. Staff levels would need to be multiplied several times over in order to have any kind of impact on successful relocation, and with it would come a similar multiplication in budget. Without even crunching any serious numbers, it’s apparent that the cost of removing a significant demographic from the United States would be titanic, both financially and in rights lost to police state necessary to accomplish this dubious goal.
Presidential politics has never been the source of the most reasonable and intelligent dialogue on the pressing issues of our time. However, the rhetoric of mass deportation of illegal immigrants sinks to a new low, something you would have to be either stupid or crazy to advocate for. Maybe a bit of both.
Return to Top