Immigration Crisis in America: 7 Things You Need to Know

border patrol fenceTalk about a disaster. Have you seen the headlines about the absolute mess that's happening at the border in Texas right now? Essentially, rumors have surged in Central America that women and children get a free pass into the United States.

That's led to more than 50,000 unaccompanied minors, mainly from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, flooding the border since last October. There's always a steady trickle of illegal immigrants coming into the country, but this is an outright flood, and for good reason. Honduras is the murder capital of the world, and the other two countries aren't far behind. Central America is a dangerous place, y'all.

So basically we have tens of thousands of illegal immigrant children being held in various centers until they can be properly deported. What the heck is happening?

Here are seven things you need to know about the immigration problem at the border.

Why now? In 2012, the Obama administration decided to "stop deporting young illegal immigrants who entered the United States as children if they meet certain requirements." Agree with that or not, the information is being misreported in Central America, where rumors run rampant that women and children get a "free pass" into the states.

Combine an uptick in crime in that area with the "promise" of a new life in the greatest country in the world, and it seems like a no-brainer. Plus, we're not really deporting very many people at the moment, so the risk is totally worth it when you feel like you have nothing to lose.

What happens to the children? It's unclear. David Gregory tried to nail down an answer from Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday, but since he's a politician, it didn't work.

Once upon a time, people caught sneaking across the border -- men, women, and children alike -- were sent back. Now there's a whole deportation process, which takes time and, you guessed it, government funding.

Why can't they just apply for citizenship? Because our system is seriously messed up. Meanwhile, they're not even allowed to apply for a green card because they're in the country illegally. So they'd have to leave, and then there'd be no guarantee they'd get back, so why do that?

Can't we just give these kids amnesty and solve the immigration bureaucracy nightmare later? This is sticky. Very, very sticky. No one wants these kids to suffer. No one wants to send them back to their crime-infested home countries. But what happens around the world when word gets out that just anyone can come to America? We can't be the savior of the world, as much as our hearts would like to allow us to.

Can President Obama do anything to help? As the Washington Post put it, "Without Congress, Obama’s options are limited. Like making small repairs on a totaled vehicle, he’s left tinkering around the edges of a broken system so long as Congress remains deadlocked."

The best thing the President could probably do at the moment would be to put pressure on federal agencies to loosen the rules to lawfully hire documented workers from outside the U.S. If it wasn't next to impossible to hire someone legally from outside the country, we might not have so many undocumented immigrants.

Once we get this mess figured out, will the border problem be solved? Not even close. Like it or not, we need border security. Not necessarily to keep people who want to work and live here out, but more to keep the drug dealers and human traffickers out.

My friends and I really disagree on this issue -- how can we find common ground? It's hard, peeps. When you have an issue as gray as this one, when it involves human rights and children and the universal desire to help others, it's just dang hard to see eye-to-eye politically. One thing I think we can all agree on, no matter how different our "solutions" might be, is this -- it sucks to be those kids.

Can you imagine leaving the only home you've ever known, traveling a thousand miles or more to the land of opportunity you've only heard about like a fairy tale, just to be detained and told you'll likely be deported?

Right or wrong, whether we should let them in or send them back, however we can fix our nightmare immigration problems -- these kids are getting caught in the crossfire of a political game that no one is winning, and it's just a tragic situation.

At least I hope we can all agree on that.

What do you think we should do with these kids stuck at the border?


Image via Brian Gaid/Flickr



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Autum... Autumnleaves87

When Jenny Erikson writes a "need to know" article, I just chuckle at the irony, scan for some entertainment, then roll my eyes. Oh cafemom. You make me laugh.

nonmember avatar Squiggles

As someone not in the US watching the current train wreck unfold, I have to say it is NOT a Human Right issue. No one has the right to move to another country in an illegal manner.

Someone needs to stop this and start deporting these kids. At least some locals are trying their best and protesting the bussing of these kids to their communities.

nonmember avatar Raisin Toast

"I just chuckle at the irony"

Exactly! I came here just to see if it was the same selfish, entitled, divorced mom who will think she's going to hook a handsome, rich man superstar.

Entertaining, indeed!

SKDMo... SKDMom1020

Actually the article is well written.  Great points Jenny, I completely agree.

tbruc... tbrucemom

Did those of you who are criticizing Jenny actually READ her article?! It was very well written and not at all biased. This is a REAL issue and those that can't see that this is both a humanitarian and legal issue are part of the problem in finding a solution.

nonmember avatar Emma

I think we need to deport all those people we already have so many here as it is if they want to be here they need to file citizenship and learn English . I don't think the taxpayers want to keep paying for all these people here illegally and living on gov assist. I work in a grocery store I have plenty that come in and are on food stamps/wic.

nonmember avatar Misty

Deport them all. Sorry not sorry. My husband is from Israel. He came here LEGALLY on a work visa. We met, fell in love and married about a year later. He even had to leave and come back before we were married in order to stay legal. It was a long process to get a green card even though we were obviously in love and I was pregnant. He works hard working 12 hours a day 6 days a week and is not even included in our food stamps. We are counted as a family of 3 even though we are now a family of 4. It sickens and angers us to see SO MANY illegal immigrants. I've rarely met one that even speaks English. I don't have any respect for them, taking our jobs and tax money...ugh I could go on but I'll stop at that. Send them all home.

nonmember avatar ago

I agree with the "moms" above - unbiased and well written. Thanks, Jenny.

nonmember avatar better wake up

Humanitarian issue my ass! Its nothing but a concerted-by-design-effort to destroy the country.America owes NOTHING to these so called "kids".Obozo is in cahoots w/ that mexican scumbag president and the other latin american loser presidents to do ALL of this.They need to be deported en masse NOW.If this continues throughout the summer you are going to see people in every city in America in the streets over this,the IRS,Benghazi etc stuff is romper room compared to this.People in this country are not going to put up with this crap.

Torra... TorranceMom

Well written article Jenny.  Ignore the Libtard trolls . . .

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