Just when you think the inflammatory rhetoric over immigration in the presidential campaign couldn’t get any worse, it somehow goes from really bad to just plain old stupid.
Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump started the horrible scapegoating, labeling Mexican immigrants criminals and proposed to build a fence along the entire U.S.-Mexican border, which he somehow will get Mexico to fund.
Not to be outdone, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who’s also seeking the Republican nomination for president, is proposing security reviews along the 5,525-mile U.S. border with Canada with a wall not being out of the question. Both candidates point to U.S. problems with illegal immigration and possible terrorist threats.
What’s next, seawalls with razor wire along U.S. coasts where beaches attract tourists now?
Not to be left out, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who’s also campaigning for the White House in 2016, wants the government to use FedEx technology to track foreign visitors the way FedEx keeps tabs on packages. Imagine all visitors to the U.S. getting microchips implants when they go through customs.
All of this is aimed at countries that are the United States’ top trading partners. The ramped-up anti-immigration campaign rhetoric is occurring as the U.S. Census Bureau reports that China and India have overtaken Mexico as the countries where most of the immigrants to the U.S. are coming from.
Of the 1.2 million newly arrived immigrants in 2013 numbers to the U.S. — legally and illegally — 147,000 came from China, 129,000 from India and 125,000 from Mexico, The Associated Press reports. That’s different from 2000 when 402,000 were from Mexico and about 84,000 each were from China and India.