Immigration and Crime

There's nothing to fear from illegal immigrants

From listening to the more vigorous critics of illegal immigration, our porous borders are a grave threat to safety. Not only can foreign terrorists sneak in to target us, but the most vicious criminals are free to walk in and inflict their worst on innocent Americans.

In xenophobic circles, this prospect induces stark terror. Fox News' Glenn Beck has decried an "illegal immigrant crime wave." A contributor to Patrick Buchanan's website asserts, "Every day, in the United States, thousands of illegal aliens unleash a reign of terror on Americans."

Sure they do. And I'm Penelope Cruz.

There is a surface logic here. If people are willing to commit the crime of slipping into the country without permission, it might stand to reason that they have no respect for our laws and will break even more once they're here. Add in Mexican drug lords and Central American gangs, and it looks like we should all be fleeing to Canada to save our hides.

Chicago's Latino residents have risen to 28 percent of the population, and among that population are many people who came illegally. So why doesn't it feel like we're fighting the battle of the Alamo?

Simple: The things that would happen if the alarmists were right simply have not happened. A continuing inflow of violent, predatory Latinos would produce an unprecedented epidemic of larceny and slaughter. In reality, as the illegal immigrant population has grown, crime has, well, gone south.

Since 1986, the year of the infamous amnesty for illegal immigrants, the U.S. murder rate has plunged by 37 percent. (In Chicago, the number of homicides went from 747 in 1986 to 460 last year.) Forcible rape is down 23 percent. Drunk driving fatalities are off by more than half. You are safer today than you were before all those undocumented interlopers arrived.

Much is made of the alleged fact that 30 percent of federal prison inmates are illegal immigrants. Actually, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the correct figure is 14 percent, and many are in just for violating immigration laws. In prisons at the state level, where most violent crime is prosecuted, illegal immigrants account for less than 5 percent of all inmates.

How can all this be? It's partly because native-born Americans are less prone to senseless mayhem than they used to be. But it's also because people who come here from other countries are actually more law-abiding than the norm.

A 2007 report by the Immigration Policy Center noted that "for every ethnic group, without exception, incarceration rates among young men are lowest for immigrants, even those who are the least educated. This holds true especially for the Mexicans, Salvadorans and Guatemalans who make up the bulk of the undocumented population."

Harvard sociologist Robert Sampson, who has focused his research on Chicago neighborhoods, documents that felonious behavior is less common among Mexican-Americans, who constitute the biggest share of Latinos, than among whites. Second and third generation Latinos, contrary to what you might expect, fall into more crime than immigrants. But Sampson says that overall, "Mexican-American rates of violence are very similar to whites."

The phenomenon is so evident that it was even recognized in a recent article in The American Conservative—a magazine founded by the lusty nativist ("we're gonna lose our country") Patrick Buchanan. It was written by Ron Unz, who made some enemies among Latinos by pushing a California ballot initiative to sharply limit bilingual education in public schools, but who knows better than to regard Latinos as the enemy.

Unz points out that in the five most heavily Hispanic cities in the country, violent crime is "10 percent below the national urban average and the homicide rate 40 percent lower." In Los Angeles, which is half Hispanic and easily accessible to those sneaking over the southern border, the murder rate has plummeted to levels unseen since the tranquil years of the early 1960s.

This is not really hard to understand. Today, as ever, most foreigners who make the sacrifice of leaving home and starting over in a strange land do so not to mug grandmothers or molest children, but to find work that will give them a better life. Coming here illegally does not alter that basic motivation.

In other words, they want to become full-fledged Americans, and they're succeeding. Is there something scary about that?

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  • John Tagliaferro||

    GO USA USA USA!!!

    Um, yea, the non-violent criminals are welcome, especially if they are good at hockey!

  • Suki||

    Good Morning reason! [shakes fist at John T.]

  • Ω||

    Could the drop in murders in both Chicago and LA be due in part or majority to their restrictive gun laws?

  • Mike||

    It could be, except for cities without such laws have seen similar, and in general larger, drops.

  • RichN||

    Um....it could be the economy was relatively steady with just a blip or two, until recently of course. Lets see what the stats look like in the next 10 years.

  • ||

    Immigration Policy Center noted

    Is this supposed to be a scientific study or simply an opinion of a Open Borders group, I can't tell. I also can't tell if Chapman thinks that all hispanics are immigrants, or all immigrants are hispanic.

    Unz points out that in the five most heavily Hispanic cities in the country, violent crime is "10 percent below the national urban average and the homicide rate 40 percent lower." In Los Angeles, which is half Hispanic and easily accessible to those sneaking over the southern border, the murder rate has plummeted to levels unseen since the tranquil years of the early 1960s.

    All this shows is that crime is lower in these cities, it doesn't show that crime among Hispanics, or immigrants is lower. Now, I wouldn't claim to know if crime is lower among illegal aliens (the title) or immigrants or Hispanics, because these numbers do not say.

    Why the insistence on bullshiting numbers? It has worked so well for the AGW crowd?

  • ||

    If the case for freer migration were based on crime statistics rather than on moral, economic, and legal arguments, you might have a point.

    But when one of the arguments used to restrict migration is based on fear driven by inaccurate statistics, its refutation doesn't require three years writing a monograph: it only requires better numbers.

  • ||

    But when one of the arguments used to restrict migration is based on fear driven by inaccurate statistics, its refutation doesn't require three years writing a monograph: it only requires better numbers.

    I agree, but these aren't "better numbers". In fact, they appear to the skeptic, as being unable to back up their argument, since they do not refute the "fear driven inaccurate statistics" but attempt to confuse them instead.

    If I claimed that blacks were more likely to cause fatal traffic accidents and then found cities with high black populations and a high number of fatal traffic accidents and said "blacks cause more fatal traffic accidents" I would be rightly shouted down as being full of shit.

  • ||

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  • Slap the Enlightened!||

    Do cosmotarians lie about immigration?

    Do bears shit in the woods?

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    This article feels like it has a lot of 'spin' to it. Did Chapman just pick up some talking points of the Obama Administration?

  • ||

    No, not all Hispanics are illegal. What percentage of Hispanics are illegal as compared to other groups? If the difference is significant, the numbers stated in the article in this regard are significant.

  • The Appalachianist||

    What concerns me, and after I only got to skim the article, is a new patron class for the Government. A Blogger, Fabius Maximus, brought that point up. If you can find that post, it's worth reading.

  • A3P||

    And for those of you who are fed up with getting told liberty means handing over your country to every Tom, Dick or Harry that sneaks over the border, you might want to tell the libertarians to go scratch and find a new party to join.

  • Slowburnaz||

    Are you serious? "For Race and Nation" is their motto?

    What does race have to do with anything? 3rd position... nice ring to it, like 3rd Reich, eh?

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Suck a dick.

  • ||

    +1

  • DJF||

    It would be nice if you were honest enough to point out that the Federal and State government have no consistent policy in reporting “Hispanic crime” or even the immigration status of the criminal

    For example when it comes to “hate crimes” there is no Hispanic category for perpetrator only for victim. Any Hispanic doing a hate crime will be classified as another group such as white, black, etc

    The classification for other criminal offenses is also inconstant with a bias toward reporting crimes committed by Hispanics as crimes by whites or blacks

    Go look at the Texas ten most wanted list. Robert Barrera, Rene Morales Munoz, Manuel Pena, Maurico Geovany Rosales, Leeroy Suarez listed as White male. Out of the ten only Javier Castro is listed as Hispanic male. Kind of throws the statics out of whack when the input numbers are false. Sort of like global warming

    http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/wanted/#

  • Mike Laursen||

    I hear you, brother. What really pisses me off, though, is that they always classify damned dirty Irish papist criminals as white.

  • Suki||

    How do you get any more pale than that?

  • Almanian||

    damned dirty Irish papist criminals as white who eat maynnaise and Wonder Bread sandwiches.

    That's how

  • ||

    Be as it may, we still need a simpler process for immigrants to enter the country legally. I suspect those on Chapman's side of the argument would still draw criticism even if only a small percentage of crime was initiated by illegals simply because they were here illegally. Analogy: If a pedestrian runs out in front of my car resulting in injury or death, and it happened while my license was suspended, I'm going to lose my ass in court since it would be argued that I wasn't to be on the road in first place despite who was at fault for the accident.

    Oh, and to the responder formerly known as Bob, John,...now Omega, that would be a first. There are abundant amounts of data which speak to the contrary. Besides, the reduction of the crime rate was attributed to efficient policing strategies concentrating resources where they're needed most (CompSat initiative - Chicago Tribune, 12/19/04), modeled after New York's.

  • DJF||

    “””’Be as it may, we still need a simpler process for immigrants to enter the country legally.””

    1,046,539 people were naturalized as citizens in 2008, how many more do you think should be allowed in per year?

  • ||

    At least a significant number more than are naturalized.

    If you measure immigration by naturalization, you are missing the entire point of freedom of movement.

  • DJF||

    There is not such thing as freedom of movement since movement costs. There is an illusion of freedom of movement because of government created roads, but these roads are not free, they cost the taxpayers lots of money.

    And privately owned land only provides movement at the whim of the owner not for everyone who wants it.

  • ||

    Of course freedom of movement isn't free. Did I say anything different?

    Yet right now, today, there are laws that prevent someone who was born outside the US from purchasing passage on a private bus and traveling to a private place of employment and working for a private enterprise for agreeable terms.

  • DJF||

    Please explain to me how this private bus is going to travel? It can travel on the public road but that is not free, since taxes paid for it. It can travel on private land but only with the permission of the owner of the land. So how is your magic bus going to transport those people.

    And once that private employer no longer needs those employees, is he going to transport his former workers back to where they came from or is he going to dump them on the pubic road and other people property

  • ||

    The private bus is going to pay road taxes and tolls.

    Duh.

  • DJF||

    But they also need the permission of the owners, which in the case of public roads is the American public

  • ||

    So you believe that government improvements over rights of way somehow gives it claims to prevent trespass on them?

    That certainly abrogates a significant portion of the bundle of rights of those who own property on those rights of way.

  • People Power Hour||

    You're apparently confusing "free" meaning "not restricted by governmental decree" with free meaning "costs nothing." A big difference and one that makes your arguments moot.

  • DJF||

    “””That certainly abrogates a significant portion of the bundle of rights of those who own property on those rights of way.””

    But what about the rights of the property owners along the road who don’t want trespass on their road? They have not agreed to this unlimited right of passage on the road since this costs them, in congestion and in money

    Or about the rights of the citizens of a country to determine who enters their country?

    Also nobody answered if the employer who brings in his workers is responsible for returning those workers to where they came from after he no longer needs their employment? Or can he dump the employees he no longer wants onto the public lands or other peoples private land?

  • DJF||

    “””You're apparently confusing "free" meaning "not restricted by governmental decree" with free meaning "costs nothing." A big difference and one that makes your arguments moot.”’’

    But the roads you want unlimited use of were created by government decree. You want to expand this decree so that not only are the citizens of a country given the right of use them but everyone in the world without limit. You are the one who wants to expand the decree

  • Colonel_Angus||

    "But what about the rights of the property owners along the road who don’t want trespass on their road? They have not agreed to this unlimited right of passage on the road since this costs them, in congestion and in money"

    This is the same shit argument people use when they get pissed off about increased traffic from a new development. Property owners adjacent to a public road do not own the road. Its not your road, so buy it or fuck off.

    Also nobody answered if the employer who brings in his workers is responsible for returning those workers to where they came from after he no longer needs their employment?"

    Are you fucking kidding? If workers become unemployed, the workers themselves are responsible for finding new employment. No one is entitled to a steady job market, either, so if you feel threatened by immigrant workers, work harder or shut the fuck up.

  • Rolling In Their Grave||

    "Are you f****** kidding? If workers become unemployed, the workers themselves are responsible for finding new employment. No one is entitled to a steady job market, either, so if you feel threatened by immigrant workers, work harder or shut the f*** up."

    So, to translate, employers responsible for introducing immigrant workers are allowed to reap the benefits of their productivity, but once the utility of the workers evaporates, the employer has to bear none of the costs? I'm a conservative and even I'm appalled by that.

    The last sentence is incoherent too. I ask in all seriousness, but you realize immigration is not a civil or human right? No one is entitled to a steady job market, immigrants least of all. Americans may not have a right to a steady job market, but they do have a right to expect the government to provide for their general welfare, a position that is hard to square with the current enormous levels of immigration and high unemployment. Consider this as well, immigration, regulated as it is by the Federal Government, is exactly the sort of interference with the labor market to which most readers of Reason would normally object.

  • ||

    I ask in all seriousness, but you realize immigration is not a civil or human right?

    No, it's far more fundamental. The right of migration is an inalienable individual right -- one that you expect to possess yourself, yet one that you appear to deny people solely due to a condition of their birth.

    Consider this as well, immigration, regulated as it is by the Federal Government, is exactly the sort of interference with the labor market to which most readers of Reason would normally object.

    The interference with regard to immigration is found in government laws that prohibit Americans from hiring whomever they want, regardless of their place of birth. How can you possibly call the freeing up of labor markets interference?

  • Rolling In Their Grave||

    Unfortunately my rather lengthy reply to this was swallowed in the internets...

    Essentially, I hold no presumption of migration outside the United States. Assuming you believe felons should be incarcerated and infections disease carriers should not be allowed to cross international borders, you cannot believe that migration is an inalienable right. In that case, we are merely arguing about the degree of restriction.

    Second, governments hold a duty to their citizens and no one else. Immigration laws ensure that the national labor supply is able to nimbly respond to demand. The more immigration is allowed, particularly with the generous subsidies currently offered, the more distorted the labor market becomes.

    Look at it this way Mike: even Adam Smith instituted tariffs.

  • ||

    In that case, we are merely arguing about the degree of restriction.

    Likely so. I believe that any government action that abrogates preexisting individual rights is of questionable legitimacy. If the action addresses an actual honest-to-goodness public goods problem, then the action can at least be argued to be legitimate. If not, there is no argument at all: the action is illegitimate, and the government taking the action is illegitimate to the degree it takes such actions.

    Second, governments hold a duty to their citizens and no one else.

    Whether or not one believes that, it does not excuse a government's behaving illegitimately -- i.e., violating individual rights without compelling public interest reasons.

    Immigration laws ensure that the national labor supply is able to nimbly respond to demand.

    The opposite is true: Immigration laws prevent the national labor supply from nimbly responding to demand. See, for example, the awful lag times involved in Congress's reacting to the market for H-1B immigrants.

  • ||

    But what about the rights of the property owners along the road who don’t want trespass on their road?

    In most cases it's not their road. It's a right of way. They may charge reasonably for the improvements made upon the right of way. They cannot prevent passage without good and individually specific cause.

    Or about the rights of the citizens of a country to determine who enters their country?

    Citizens have a right to determine who becomes a citizen. They do not have the right to claim property rights over the entirety of the territory under their dominion without unanimous consent.

  • DJF||

    “””In most cases it's not their road. It's a right of way. They may charge reasonably for the improvements made upon the right of way. They cannot prevent passage without good and individually specific cause.””

    Yes and the good and individually specific cause is if a person is not been given permission by the citizens to be in the country. If you are not allowed in the country then you have no right to use that countries roads

    “””’Citizens have a right to determine who becomes a citizen. They do not have the right to claim property rights over the entirety of the territory under their dominion without unanimous consent.”””
    And so you give away one of the major benefits of citizenship to non-citizens. If someone who is not a citizen has unlimited right of movement in a country then what use is citizenship? You might as well just come out and advocate getting rid of national citizenship.

    Also you are never going to get unanimous consent on anything so that is simply ridiculous. Even someones right to own property is not going to be consented by everyone so you might as well get rid of the private enterprise since not everyone is going to give unanimous consent.

    And once again no answer to my question about whether employers should be responsible for returning their foreign workers back to their original country once they no longer need them or do they have the right to simply dump them onto the public roads and other peoples property

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    MikeP,
    "Citizens have a right to determine who becomes a citizen. They do not have the right to claim property rights over the entirety of the territory under their dominion without unanimous consent."

    Unanimous consent? By who, the whole country? Is it your claim that anyone, anywhere in the world should have a right to travel to and obtain a job anyplace? How Utopian!

  • ||

    It's called "liberty". You ought to take a look at it sometime.

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    Ah, "Utopian Liberty". You ought to start your own party, the ULP.

  • ||

    I don't believe in Utopia. Besides, the LP's position is close enough to mine:

    We support the removal of governmental impediments to free trade. Political freedom and escape from tyranny demand that individuals not be unreasonably constrained by government in the crossing of political boundaries. Economic freedom demands the unrestricted movement of human as well as financial capital across national borders. However, we support control over the entry into our country of foreign nationals who pose a threat to security, health or property.
  • Colonel_Angus||

    I think the same thing I said in regards to the taco trucks using public rights of ways applies here:

    As long as the roads are payed for with taxes, as far as I care they can be used by me or anyone for anything (individual freedom), rather than the fucking majority determining the "acceptable use" (fuck democracy).

  • Colonel_Angus||

    If the roads were owned outright by an entity that is not the taxpaying public, then the owners can determine access at will.

  • Edwin||

    There seems to be some misunderstanding about rights of way and public roads.

    Every landowner is entitled to access to his land. He isn't entitled to land-improved (i.e. paved) access to his land - just the right to create that access and use other people's property if it isn't adjacent to some public right-of-way. This is usually done through easements. And if you sell a parcel of land that isn't adjacent to a public right-of-way, and you haven't already surveyed and recorded an easement for the buyer, the buyer can sue, and the judge will grant him the right to get an easement on his neighbors' property(ies), whether they like it or not. If we're not talking about your land - that is you're a developer and you set up this right-of-way lacking situation between your customers, they could sue you for compensation because you failed to fully disclose all pertinent information about the real estate you sold.

    furthermore these rights-of-way have to be big enough for vehicles.

    I'm not too sure how it works for services/utilities like water service, septic sewer, drainage, etc. But I can tell you A) if it were up to me, these would be explicitly included and B) having the right to pave a driveway and having the right-of-way effectively grants you the ability to do that. There's plenty of time in preparing and building the road that you could make it so that you can get utilities to your house - for example, you could just lay some PVC pipes to make a conduit underground.

    Most of the time none of this causes too many problems because developers (and individuals who have subdivided their land and just want to sell one lot behind their house) want to please their customers.

    Roads are rights-of-way and the pavement and improvements that go along with it that are meant for public use. This does NOT mean that "the people" get to decide how they're used. The people get to VOTE for LEGISLATORS who may pas or repeal LAWS DEALING WITH PUBLIC PROPERTY. However, those laws must be within the restraints of the constitution (as per the 14th amendment), all the basics of common-law real estate laws which can cause weird situations sometimes, and, like pretty much all other laws, must be "reasonable" (I couldn't tell you exactly where that's written, but basically every damn law or section of law has that requirement, whether or not that's the exact word that's used).

    Now the thing about all this is that even if we wanted to, we can't EFFECTIVELY ban illegal immigrants from using public roads. If the police/state had the power to do that, the roads wouldn't be very useful anymore. The Department of Transportation is not the whatever-body-deals-with-immigration.

    That's how it works with private land and public right-of-way.

    As for the whole immigration deal. I'll just say that if you believe in a geographically-defined state (that is, you aren't an anarchist), then you necessarily believe that the state has SOME sort of right to police the borders in SOME way or another. And the state is obligated at least to prevent force, fraud, and breach of contract within its geographical jurisdiction. And I'd like to think that even libertarians would like the state to do that EFFECTIVELY. And when a person immigrates, that IMMEDIATELY CREATES a WHOLE NEW PERSON that the state must protect from force, fraud, etc.

    To put it another way, that's a whole, new person, who can commit crimes, who can help the cops stop crimes, who could maybe bribe cops so that he can commit crimes, who can get a job, who can create jobs, who can buy things, who can sell things, who can enter into contracts (recorded or not) with people. Who can bring in diseases. Who can become addcicted to drugs and then maybe become a criminal to pay for his habit, or just get in the way of pedestrians on the sidewalk, begging. Who can flip out and shoot a bunch of people. Who could shoot a guy who was flipping out and shooting a bunch of people. Who can save a baby from a burning building, who can get crushed by the collapsing, burning building, and then maybe sue the town or state for damages for "letting him" act irresponsibly. He could then lose that suit, but still have costed the taxpayers money.

    He can do ANTYTHING and EVERYTHING, GOOD or BAD that the whole business of government, even a libertarian goverenment, is meant to deal with.

  • Edwin||

    So, as you can see, landowners CANNOT determine "access at their will". Even if we wanted to make such laws, it would be very difficult since it's ingrained in our common law tradition.

    Furthermore, if someone is on your land, you cannot prevent them from leaving. You don't need to help them get somewhere, but they have to have the ability to leave. Anything else would be kidnapping.

  • ||

    let me guess : you are one of those rockwell-hoppe nazis right?

  • ||

    Maybe you're right...and maybe that's a lot, but I wasn't arguing numbers. Rather, I was only suggesting that coming in legally is (was) a difficult and costly process, comparatively. In other words, it must difficult enough that people would rather risk their lives crossing illegally rather than having to deal with whatever process is currently in place.

  • Raven||

    For a large number of people, coming in legally is more than a difficult and costly process- it's pretty much impossible. So many people talk about just "standing in line," but unless you belong to certain groups, you are never even going to be allowed in line. Many, if not most, people who come here illegally belong to this group.

  • horselips||

    My heart bleeds. Since I'm never going to be able to afford a Porsche, does that justify my stealing one?

  • Mike McGee||

    This whole thread (below) only goes to show that open borders only work with really free markets. Opening the borders means dismantling the welfare state. The welfare state is inherently nationalistic. As soon as "the people" get benefits from the state, you have to define who "the people" are. So the consistent libertarian line is open borders, free markets.

    That would also mean that I can move to Mexico and bring my online business there to semi-retire without permission from the Mexican government. Not going to happen, though.

  • ||

    I agree. Welfare should not be extended to those who are here illegally. Cut off the benefits to illegals and their children (in all forms) then relax the laws to give legal immigration the advantage.

  • ||

    Frankly, welfare shouldn't be extended to those who are here legally either.

    Welfare simply shouldn't be a draw for migration.

  • Cookie Kwan||

    There are many eyebrow raisers in Chapman's opinion piece here. First of all, as a Chicago resident myself, the real statistics show that minority neigborhoods (poverty correlations) are the most crime laden. We have enormous gang problems, many of which are Latino gangs.

    I would like to see the break down of the felonies Mr. "Harvard Sociologist" is citing.

    You would think/hope Libertarians wouldn't reduce themselves to politically correct driven influence, but I'm sure Chapman has his motivations. Free and open borders -- it's hard to tow that party line without ever thinking for yourself.

  • libertybill||

    Uh Oh an illegal immigration article; Preemptive STFU LoneWacko

  • Joe||

    reason, who are these loser commenters you have on your blog?

    If you're going to have cheerleaders support your vague falsified "statistics", at least get them to say something better than this.

    OK, so 14% of Federal inmates are illegals, illegals are probably under 5% of the population (12 million according to Obama), equals illegals are much more likely to commit serious crimes than the average American.

    Steve Chapman=Gabacho who likes chunky wetbacks pregnant with anchor babies

  • ||

    Except, of course, that federal crimes are generally not serious crimes.

  • Joe||

    No, you're wrong. And in the abscense of any of any other statistics in this outrageously slanted article, this does demonstrate that they are far more prone to crime than legal Americans.

    I'd love for all these cheerleaders for an open border with Mexico to all be forced to move to a state, say Arizona, with just themselves and the illegals. I'm sure they'd learn to appreciate what it's like living in the third world.

  • ||

    I'm wrong?

    Are you saying that murder, rape, assault, armed robbery, etc., are generally federal crimes?

  • Joe||

    Yes, you're wrong about pretty much everything. And please show me the stats that illegals aren't much more prone to commit violent crime than citizens. Take a look at the most wanted lists for Arizona and NM. Unscientific, yes, but it's more than anything you're offering.

    Go crawl back under your rock.

  • ||

    I clearly wasn't wrong about your claim that a higher-than-citizen federal incarceration rate implies that illegals are more violent, seeing as you immediately ran to state most wanted lists.

    But you're going to have to help me out here. It's been a few years since I lived in New Mexico, so I can't walk down to the post office to check out the most wanted lists.

    From the lists I found on the web, I checked out all the names that weren't obviously native New Mexican and found nothing but citizens. Can you point me to the illegal immigrant most wanted list you think exists?

  • joe||

    Arizona - http://www.azalmanac.com/Arizo.....allery.htm
    No wetbacks there right? These lists don't say if they're illegal or not by the way, doubtless due to lobbying by Mexican pressure groups.

    Prove that illegals from one of the most crime-infested countries in the world aren't more prone to non-federal crimes, smelly gabacho.
    That's right, you can't. FAIL

  • ||

    Prove that illegals from one of the most crime-infested countries in the world aren't more prone to non-federal crimes, smelly gabacho.

    I proved something similar in a comment a couple years ago...

    First, the proportion of inmates -- federal, state and local -- who are immigrants is 6.4%, not 28%. A helpful GAO report on actual illegal immigrants in federal and state prison gives us some other numbers: 12% of illegal immigrants in prison committed violent crimes, and 7% of the violent crimes they committed were murder. One more piece of the puzzle can be found from a BLS summary, which tells us that 10% of all federal inmates and 49% of all state inmates are in for violent crimes. Since 8% of all inmates are in federal prison, that makes the composite rate of violent crime for all inmates 46%.

    So 6% of inmates are alien, both illegal and legal, and they commit violent crimes at a quarter the rate of the average inmate.
  • ||

    Or if you're partial to NBER papers, you can try this one...

    The perception that immigration adversely affects crime rates led to legislation in the 1990s that particularly increased punishment of criminal aliens. In fact, immigrants have much lower institutionalization (incarceration) rates than the native born - on the order of one-fifth the rate of natives. More recently arrived immigrants have the lowest relative incarceration rates, and this difference increased from 1980 to 2000. We examine whether the improvement in immigrants' relative incarceration rates over the last three decades is linked to increased deportation, immigrant self-selection, or deterrence. Our evidence suggests that deportation does not drive the results. Rather, the process of migration selects individuals who either have lower criminal propensities or are more responsive to deterrent effects than the average native. Immigrants who were already in the country reduced their relative institutionalization probability over the decades; and the newly arrived immigrants in the 1980s and 1990s seem to be particularly unlikely to be involved in criminal activity, consistent with increasingly positive selection along this dimension.
  • ||

    By the way, if you don't want to pay the $5, there's an ungated pdf.

    If you think incarceration doesn't necessarily capture actual crime, you'll be interested in Figure 7 on page 54. It shows a decreasing trend in crime in metropolitan areas in proportion to the increase in the fraction of the population that is immigrant.

  • Rolling In Their Graves||

    Assuming you are willing to read a wide range of opinions, you ought to avail yourself of Ed Rubenstein's piece at VDare, published the 24th. I can't imagine that publication could be more opposed to this one, but Rubenstein's article is one piece of datum after the other, not philosophical arguments about property rights. In that sense, the difference is less intractable.

    It's funny you mention incarceration, as prison statistics are the one place that reliably highlights ethnic and racial background. What they reveal are not much help to your case.

    13,400 more Hispanics were in prison for murder in 2006 than in 2000, a 57% increase. As a touchstone, the number of whites fell by 35%, and blacks 20%. Simiarly, Hispanic imprisonment for violent crimes jumped by 63% over that same period. At all ages, across all jurisdictions, Hispanics are sentenced at a rate of 1,200 per 100,000, compared to the white 487 per and black 3,161.

    Which segues nicely into your point that there is a decreasing trend in crime in proportion to the increasing share of their population. You're absolutely right. And the simple - and dangerous to notice - explanation is that Hispanics aren't as prone to criminality as blacks...yet.

  • joe||

    Arizona - http://www.azalmanac.com/Arizo.....allery.htm
    No wetbacks there right? These lists don't say if they're illegal or not by the way, doubtless due to lobbying by Mexican pressure groups.

    Prove that illegals from one of the most crime-infested countries in the world aren't more prone to non-federal crimes, smelly gabacho.
    That's right, you can't. FAIL

  • ||

    16 most wanted. 8 apparent Hispanics. Can't tell citizenship, but some birthplaces are given. Of the 5 one would guess were born outside the US, 2 are violent offenders, 2 are drug crime offenders, and 1 is wanted for non-custodial parental kidnapping.

    This is the most wanted list from a border state. Two of the most wanted are violent immigrants (illegal or not). Wow. That's pretty damning evidence you bring up against 12 million people.

  • suckitupcrybaby||

    If these facts were true, this does not justify the breaking of the immigration laws. He say's they just want to be full-fledged Americans. I beg to disagree as they are not assimilating to our culture. If they did we would not have the need for bilingual ballots,drivers test or teachers and books in our class rooms.
    The Mexican government say's we need to relax our immigration laws as they imprison and beat illegal immigrates from there neighbors Guatemala and El Slavador.
    www.suckitupcrybaby.com

  • ||

    If these facts were true, this does not justify the breaking of the immigration laws.

    True enough. What justifies the breaking of immigration laws is rather that such laws abrogate the unalienable rights of individuals.

  • ||

    What unalienable rights would those be?

  • ||

    Travel, residence, association, labor.

    Do you not believe you have those rights?

  • ||

    So can I sneak into your house and live there?

  • ||

    No. Just as you can't legitimately prevent my allowing anyone into my house that I want.

  • DJF||

    But how are you going to get them to your house? Let me guess you are going to use the public road even when the majority of the public does not want them.

    And once you no longer want them in your house are you going to return them to their own country or are you going to dump them onto the public road and or other peoples property?

  • ||

    We can't "legitimately" prevent you from harboring a fugitive from justice?

  • ||

    Yes you can.

    Sorry I can't put the "compelling public interest" proviso into every argument about fundamental rights.

  • ||

    So then, foreign nationals don't have an inalienable right to sneak into the country? I think you are contradicting yourself.

  • ||

    I allow the government a number of legitimate powers that contravene inalienable rights. For instance, government has the legitimate power to imprison felons.

    Similarly, government has the legitimate power to identify those crossing the border and deny entry to individuals it determines are provable serious threats to the public. The list is short: material felons, carriers of contagion, terrorists, foreign armies or agents.

  • J_L_B||

    I don't believe those rights extend across national borders. I have the right to travel all I want within the United States. Canada, Mexico, and any other country has the right to keep my ass out for whatever reason they deem. We as a people don't give up our right to property just because someone else feels like they want to move through, live on, conduct a meeting on, and work off my property.

  • ||

    We as a people don't have a right to property. We as individuals do.

    Consequently, we as a people don't have a right to prevent individuals from exercising their rights to property by transporting, housing, and employing whomever they want.

  • J_L_B||

    If we don't have a collective set of property, then armies would not be justified if the invading forces only sought our public lands for their use. Thus, in the 1930's and 1940's, the Japanese would have been perfectly justified to take Chinese public land for their ever expanding population. The Chinese had no collective property right to prevent the Japanese from living where they chose?

  • ||

    I do not deny that immigration can be restricted for reasons of compelling public interest: e.g., an immigrant is a violent felon, carrier of contagion, terrorist, or foreign agent.

    But such restrictions must be applied against individuals and for specific harmful cause. "The quota of your type of person has been reached" is neither.

  • ||

    Then logically you must be opposed to illegal immigration: if immigrants aren't vetted for being criminals etc., then we are being lax in protecting the public interest, correct?

  • ||

    Of course I am opposed to illegal immigration. I want the law changed so virtually all migrants can enter legally after applying for an unlimited visa and passing a quick background check.

    People who evade such simple procedures probably are threats and actually deserve to be illegal.

  • DJF||

    Surveys say that at least half of the Mexican population would move to the USA and you would allow this even though the majority of Americans don’t want this?

  • ||

    Did the survey ask whether they would move if they could travel back and forth freely? That might change things.

    Also, did the poll point out that open borders won't come without major restrictions on welfare? In particular, citizen children of immigrants are on the welfare schedule of their parents, and no immigrants are eligible for welfare ever, or at least for the first 20 or so years.

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    Yes, in some bizzaro universe, this may be so.

  • ||

    I don't recall ever seeing any of those rights in the Bill of Rights or any other reasonable document. Besides, most of those would destroy an orderly society unless limited.

    I have a right to travel? Really? What if I can't afford the means to do so? What if I have no legs and can't walk? Can I then demand you provide me with a wheelchair, a plane ticket, or bus fare? What if I'd like to travel through your bedroom while you're having sex?

    I have a right to residence? You're kidding. Since when can I demand a house from you, or force you to put me up in a hotel room? What if I decide you should put me up for a while? You agreeable to that?

    Association? What does that mean? I can be friends with whomever I want? You can be friends across international lines can't you?

    Labor...hmmm. Maybe I can demand a salary from you for doing whatever type of work I choose, regardless of if you need it or not.

    Fundamentally, I have rights until my exercise of those rights infringes on your rights. I cannot come into your state and then demand the rights and benefits of a citizen of that state, forcing those citizens to pay for them. The rights that you postulate, which by the way don't exist as far as I know except according to the U.N., would be a disaster for humanity.

  • ||

    I don't recall ever seeing any of those rights in the Bill of Rights or any other reasonable document.

    Try the Declaration of Independence.

    A right does not mean someone must provide it to you. It means someone cannot take it away from you.

  • Contrarian P||

    Sorry, I looked through the Declaration and can't find any mention of the rights to which you refer. The only ones I can find stated are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

    Maybe this is what you're talking about:

    "He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands."

    That seems to imply rather directly that the government has the right to enact laws governing the process of immigration into its lands, and indeed the British Crown's usurpations of such laws was among the grievances of the colonists.

    "A right does not mean someone must provide it to you. It means someone cannot take it away from you."

    I am aware of that. Which is precisely why what you mention are not rights, at least not in the context of illegal immigrants. In other words, they have those rights in their own countries, or should unless their government acts in a tyranical fashion. But they don't have the right to come here without restriction, simply because they feel like they should.

  • ||

    You didn't need to go so far.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men

    Rights are primary and preexist and precede government. Government secures rights.

    Can you travel without government? Yes. Can you reside, associate, or labor without government? Yes.

    Therefore those are individual rights. Governments cannot abrogate them without good and individually applied just cause.

  • ||

    So everything is a right? I can eat McDonald's without government. That's a right now? So those no shirt no shoes laws abrogate my rights? Give me a break.

  • ||

    You really don't get this whole "rights" thing, do you.

    You have a right to eat. McDonald's has a right to sell food. You have a right to associate with McDonald's on mutually agreeable terms. One of McDonald's terms is that you have to wear shirt and shoes inside their restaurants.

    It really isn't that difficult.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    MikeP is obviously talking about negative rights- you have the right to those things, but no one has to provide them to you. And, the Bill of Rights is not a purely liberal (libertarian) document, I have the right to make a living from anyone who is willing to exchange their wealth for my labor, whether the Bill of Rights says I do or not.

  • ||

    We are a Republic - thus governed by laws.

    If a person breaks the law, they should be punished.

    Problems arise when people pick and choose which laws to follow.

    Change the law(s) if they are outdated, unjust, etc...

    That about sums up my beef with illegal immigration.

    TC

  • libertybill||

    Ditto but for most people its easier to use buzzwords and sensationalism than to actually debate the problem.

  • Mike Laursen||

    The current immigration laws are unjust. So, you support changing them to make it possible for Hispanic workers to come here legally?

  • Joe||

    Oh, sure they're unjust. And the noble Mexicans are simply saying that they're entitled to special preferences over people from countries (most of which are far poorer than Mexico). Your average Mexican makes $25 per day. Your average human makes under $5 per day.

    We legally let in hundreds of thousands of Mexicans per year, NOT counting the illegals. Why don't we let in people from poorer countries instead of anchor baby-birthing leeches?

    Lucky us, we're responsible for employing and providing free social services for Mexico's underclass thanks to tireless lobbying from the scumbags at the Chamber of Commerce.

  • ||

    Why don't we let in people from poorer countries instead of anchor baby-birthing leeches?

    If you're for open borders, you certainly aren't showing it.

  • Joe||

    Even corporate shills hoping for permanent completely open borders to exploit cheap, docile labor generally admit that if the world's wealthiest country completely opened its borders today, the US would almost instantaneously become a third world country. Every home in the US would have a high fence around it.

    Even Mexico doesn't want this, they just want to continue the sweetheart deal they have going now and keep folks from poorer countries out of the US. That's why they push amnesty rather than open borders.

  • Mike Laursen||

    You're a complete idiot. The population of illegal immigrants has been shrinking ever since the economy went south. People would come here and stay to the degree that they can find jobs; self-regulating.

  • joe||

    You're the idiot. Mexicans go home because their country is relatively wealthy. If we open the borders to Chinese or Indians accustomed to living on a dollar a day, they will never go back home.

    MALDEF corporate-whore, thank you!

  • Mike Laursen||

    Dude, China and India are just as "relatively wealthy" as Mexico. Moreso these days.

  • ||

    "Dude, China and India are just as "relatively wealthy" as Mexico. Moreso these days."

    CIA World Fact Book
    Estimated 2009 Per Capita GDP
    China $ 6500
    Mexico $13200
    India $ 3100

    https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ch.html

  • horselips||

  • ||

    Even corporate shills hoping for permanent completely open borders to exploit cheap, docile labor generally admit that if the world's wealthiest country completely opened its borders today, the US would almost instantaneously become a third world country.

    The obvious conclusion to draw is that one shouldn't trust the economic literacy of corporate shills hoping for permanent completely open borders to exploit cheap, docile labor.

  • ||

    This guy sounds a bit full of himself as usual!

    JHess
    www.online-anonymity.vze.com

  • Almanian||

    Hmm, hmm, hmm. Not sure these "data" tell me much of anything useful. I'd like to believe Chapman's correct, but this doesn't convince me.

    Off to do my own research...

    PS Check out Detroit Police Dept's recent under/mis-reporting of murders - gov't wouldn't have any interest in misreporting or failing to report something like that, would it? Nothing to see here, move along...

  • ||

    I used to work at a city hospital in a Southern state which had as a large percentage of its patients illegal immigrants. No social security number, no valid identification, no valid address, meaning that it was impossible for us to bill them for services rendered. We lost a lot of money giving out free care to people we were required by law to treat regardless of ability to pay. I recall one particular instance where one woman in our system gave birth to 9 babies separately in one year. It was 9 different women using the same identifying information.

    Now if someone steals money through this type of mechanism, it's still theft. Just because they aren't using a gun doesn't make it correct. Add into that the costs of WIC vouchers for the families, the free car seats we had to give away to mothers of newborns, and how much it cost us to have Spanish speaking interpreters in the hospital at all times. Then there's the cost of educating their children, with the added bonuses of ESL instruction. It's still theft, it's still wrong, even if you accept all the (highly questionable) ideas cited in the article as true.

    Let's have a frank discussion about real immigration reform and laws that actually service both those who want to come here legitimately to work as well as those of us who are citizens of this nation. That might actually fix some of these problems.

  • ||

    ...lies, damn lies, and statistics.

  • Joe||

    This article is complete BS which wisely avoids any detailed crime statistics and the writer is a loser. I'm sure he's proud to be a shill for the Chamber of Commerce, MALDEF, and La Raza.

    I know someone who works in insurance and there are a growing number of home invasions by Mexican gangs in places like New Mexico and Los Angeles that aren't reported by the media. And take a look at the most wanted list for any of the border states and tell me illegals aren't disproportionally represented.

  • ||

    It isn't exactly hard to find the real numbers which show violent crime really decreasing across the country over the last decade or so. It also isn't hard to find real numbers showing illegal immigration dramatically increasing in that same span. So we have more illegals and less crime. Mere correlation, I will readily concede. But anyway you slice it, there isn't a dramatic increase in crime due to people who originate south of the US border.

    As for your claims: "you know someone." This is called anecdote. I haven't seen any evidence violent crime is increasing. The home invasions you speak of are a numerator vs denominator problem. The numerator sounds scary. The denominator--all the homes not getting robbed and all the Mexicans not robbing anyone, dwarfs the numerator. It also doesn't fit into a narrative that Mexicans are scary.

    Your second claim: most wanted lists are dominated by illegals. So I'm looking at Texas's 10 most wanted. 6 Latin Americans in a state that is about half Latino. One of those I'm pretty sure is a Cuban. So basically Latin American crime is proportional to what we'd expect based on that sample. There's also a white dude, a black dude, an asian dude and a native American. Texas does not mention that any of them are illegal aliens, so presumably their worst criminals are actually citizens. Which fits the observations that 2nd/3rd generation Latin Americans are more prone to crime than new immigrants.

    I mean if you want to do ethnic profiling on crime, the indisputable fact is that African Americans commit far more violent crimes than any other ethnic group. I'm not going to even begin to speculate as to why this is, but that is the data. Asian Americans commit far less crimes than any other ethnicity. Whites and Latin/Hispanics commit violent crimes at approximately the same rate. That's just how it goes.

    Now for my anecdotes. I have lived all over the country, including the 2 most Mexican states: California and Texas. I like Mexican food, so I tend to go where the good Mexican food is, which tends to be the areas that are heavily immigrant communities. I have never felt remotely threatened. My only complaint is that the children of Mexican immigrants seem totally oblivious of personal space and will run right into you for no good reason. I like personal space. This is mildly annoying. But they're law abiding kids, just like their parents. I mean we're talking about 2 parent families where each parent holds down at least one job, sometimes more, and they go to church every Sunday. These aren't scary people.

    My other anecdote. I grew up in Los Angeles. Lived there throughout the growth in crime in the 70s to its peak in the early 90s. I was the victim of random crimes in the early 90s. They were never committed by anyone of Hispanic/Latin ancestry. Now I go back to LA and people drive sanely (probably due to all the enforcement cams), no one has pulled a gun on me recently, and the place is just way less threatening. Pretty domesticated. That is even in parts of town that people claim are "bad."

    One last anecdote. I was once randomly assaulted in Cape Cod. By a white dude. But hey, these are just anecdotes. I just know that I don't feel particularly threatened in Mexican/Central American immigrant communities. But hey, I live in Saint Paul now and I don't feel threatened in our supposedly violent Somali immigrant communities either. They also have awesome food, btw.

    Maybe people just aren't so scary actually.

  • Joe||

    Complete BS. I'm sorry, when you have an open border with a country that only requires education through the sixth grade and has a completely out of control crime problem, that's not good.

    You can hide behind "almost statistics" all you want but you lie and you know it.

    Try the most wanted list for Arizona, NM or Colorado, then explain why the number of illegal inmates in federal prison is more than double their percentage of the US population.

  • ||

    "But they're law abiding kids, just like their parents."

    Their parents are not law abiding. They entered the country illegally. I realize that they did it for the betterment of their families and so forth...that does not make it right. If I steal your television because my family is going hungry, it does not make it okay.

    "I mean we're talking about 2 parent families where each parent holds down at least one job, sometimes more, and they go to church every Sunday."

    But they don't pay enough taxes to anywhere near compensate for the cost of the services they use. And therein lies a major problem. Even if you accept the author's statistics at face value, that still constitutes theft.

  • Mike Laursen||

    So, you'd be OK with letting them come here legally as long as they pay their fair share of taxes and such?

  • Rolling In Their Grave||

    "I mean we're talking about 2 parent families where each parent holds down at least one job, sometimes more, and they go to church every Sunday."

    But they don't pay enough taxes to anywhere near compensate for the cost of the services they use. And therein lies a major problem. Even if you accept the author's statistics at face value, that still constitutes theft."

    They're not even 2 parent families all that often. Hispanics' illegitimacy rate is fast approaching that of blacks.

  • John Rohan||

    So we have more illegals and less crime. Mere correlation, I will readily concede. But anyway you slice it, there isn't a dramatic increase in crime due to people who originate south of the US border.

    And you don't think this has anything to do with the fact that we lock up a higher percentage of our population than any other nation on earth? Or that there were remarkable advances in crimefighting technology since the 1980s?

    Moreover, you (and Steve Chapman) are only looking at violent crime. Identity theft, for example, has risen dramatically since the 1980s. Rumor has it that an awful lot of them are illegal immigrants...

  • ||

    Identity theft, for example, has risen dramatically since INS/ICE started using W-4 identities to track down illegal immigrants.

  • ||

    Of course Hispanic immigration reduces crime - the whole point of Hispanic immigration is to dilute the African-American presence in big cities, blacks are being essentially ethnically cleansed out of many neighborhoods in LA and Manhattan. The elites would much rather have a compliant Hispanic lower class than a violent restless black lower class. Illegal immigration has a been a disaster for blacks, but mostly beneficial for whites.

  • ?||

    Pat Buchanan is that you?

  • .||

    Illegal immigration has a been a disaster for blacks, but mostly beneficial for whites.

    How's that? Being ethnically cleansed is bad for blacks, but good for whites?

  • Mike Laursen||

    It's been a while since I took Ethnic Cleansing 101, but don't you have to, like, kill the members of the group you're cleansing? Or, at least, like sterilize them or something?

  • jacob||

    Well, doesn't Hispanic immigration dilute the presence of whites, too?

  • Mike Laursen||

    Many Hispanic people ARE white.

  • ||

    What a fine religion? No! It is not a religion, it is a cult. This is what Islam brings to the world..........hate. If you are not a Muslim, they will use you, talk to you but they still hate you and the reason is.............You are NOT a Muslim! Keep bringing in Muslims America and this will just get worse!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....r_embedded

  • ||

    What? When did this become a thread about Islam? Did I miss the flood of Islamic Mexicans?

  • LibertyBill||

    It didnt but he comes from the Raw Story forums which is full of moronic trolls.

  • jacob||

    1. Wrong thread, dipshit
    2. Wrong website, dipshit. Try Stormfront or Townhall.

  • Marian Kechlibar||

    Whatever you do, Americans ... do not allow balkanization of your country, a la Kosovo or Bosnia.

    And I say this as a half Balkanian myself.

    Having multiple ethnicities does not really matter, but having multiple, mutually hostile cultures is a recipe for civil war, or, at the very least, low-level street warfare. Remember the Sioux and the Apache? The Seminole? Etc.

    As long as the 2nd generation immigrants learn English and have loyalty to their new home, instead of the country of origin, then fine. But the La Raza irredentist types are serious enemies of your country, and they should never be allowed into the country (let alone get citizenship), as long as they advocate dismembering of its territory.

    The Founding Fathers were more realistic than many of the contemporary libertarians, and they have added the following clause to the Oath of Citizenship:

    "I renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty ..."

    It stands there for a reason, but it seems to me that more and more people take it as empty word play. At their own peril.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Do I really need to worry about La Raza rather than ignoring them, and occasionally laughing at them. I'd like to spend my worrying time worrying about significant problems.

  • Marian Kechlibar||

    Every significant problem starts as insignificant one, especially when it comes to ideologies.

    No doubt that Marxism in 1870 received the same dismissive attitude from many, and yet it screwed the next 100 years beyond belief. If you described Soviet Union to any realistic thinker of the 1870, he would laugh you off and send you to the nearest mental hospital.

    And that does not mean that you, Mike Larsen, should concentrate your efforts on preventing growth of La Raza. This should be work of the immigration control. But you should not ignore it entirely; just like you do not ignore, say, the efforts to eradicate polio, although they do not involve you personally or profesionally.

  • Marian Kechlibar||

    Sorry for mangling your name in the previous reply. I do apologize.

  • Mike Laursen||

    I'll tell you what you worry about La Raza nuts and I'll worry about nationalist, racist nuts.

  • Marian K.||

    nationalist, racist nuts

    Well, that sort of includes La Raza ("the Race").

  • ||

    i do agree that illegal immigrants are a financial drain on certain parties, private hospitals for example.

    but aside from all the moral arguments, the practical argument remains that having a berlin wall along the border wont fix it, cracking down hard on those who hire illegals wont either (see crackdown on drugs for example).

    a guest worker program would not be perfect, but if immigrants want to work here, we should let them. they dont have to come here and be citizens. there is something between the two.

  • Marian Kechlibar||

    I keep hearing that "walls do not work". Where does this meme come from? Is that the same source that says "You can't defend yourself with gun against a criminal."?

    Berlin Wall actually worked really well in GDR. After its construction, the flood of refugees was reduced to trickle. You can debate its morality, but not its efficiency.

    The same goes for the separation barrier between Israel and the West Bank.

  • Tyler||

    I do agree that the danger of illegal immigrants is overplayed, it's important to remember that correlation doesn't equal causation. Mr. Chapman, you need to be more careful and stop trying to create justifications for your beliefs.

  • Marian Kechlibar||

    The main reason why to have control over immigration is to prevent import of criminals and seditious elements.

    There is no rational reason why to import (or keep inside, in case that they turn that way) criminals, or people like the obnoxious Mullah Krekar.

    I absolutely do not believe that old George Washington or Thomas Jefferson would import Krekar in the USA. They had a realistic concept where sedition begins and how easy it is to turn segments of population against one another. After all, that is what they successfully did against the Crown.

  • Joe||

    He's not being careless, he knows the stats aren't on his side so he's shamelessly manipulating/avoiding them. Fortunately, he did a laughably bad job.

    If Reason is going to continue running these articles on the glories of an open border with a country on the verge of collapse due to crime and corruption, they should just disable the comments the way La Raza, Chamber of Commerce and all the other Mexico lovers do. It's hard to defend an indefensible position.

  • Joe||

    He's not being careless, he knows the stats aren't on his side so he's shamelessly manipulating/avoiding them. Fortunately, he did a laughably bad job.

    If Reason is going to continue running these articles on the glories of an open border with a country on the verge of collapse due to crime and corruption, they should just disable the comments the way La Raza, Chamber of Commerce and all the other Mexico lovers do. It's hard to defend an indefensible position.

  • ||

    I wish Chapman had mentioned that most of the illegals in this country have been paying into the Social Security system. People who favor amnesty for illegals frequently bring that one up.

    The answer, of course, is that a person living here illegally has to commit fraud or identity theft (both felonies) in order to get a Social Security card. Thus if a majority of the illegals are "paying into the system" a majority of them are felons.

  • ||

    This was a solved problem a few years ago.

    You used to be able to pay your taxes on an ITIN. The IRS and SSA didn't mind collecting the proceeds because you can't receive benefits on an ITIN.

    Then some bright idiot in government thought to use ITINs to hunt down illegal workers, driving them to use SSNs. So now actual people's actual SSNs are actually causing their actual identity actual harm.

    This is not an argument against illegal immigration, but against illegal immigration enforcement.

  • ||

    Many new immigrants are hard working and a net plus for the country. What conservatives want is a manageable rate of immigration that does not result in ethnic and language ghettos. Moreover, conservatives do not want the welfare state to become a magnet. Already border states are saddled with disproportionate illegal immigrant costs and are powerless to correct the situation because of federal jurisdiction.

  • ||

    Why would they want to be full-fledged American when it's so much better to be illegal. You don't pay many taxes, few bills and can get away with many crimes.

    Let me get this straight, you can commit a illegal act and that's ok as long as you want to be an American. Yeah that makes since.

  • Mikey||

    Nobody says it in almost 120 comments? Fine, I'll bite. DEY TOOK OUR JERBS!

  • ||

    DJF, I missed your comment above earlier. Bringing it down for visibility.

    And so you give away one of the major benefits of citizenship to non-citizens. If someone who is not a citizen has unlimited right of movement in a country then what use is citizenship? You might as well just come out and advocate getting rid of national citizenship.

    Indeed, unlimited residence is far and away the most valuable entitlement of citizenship, which is why it is such an egregious insult to the rights of man to horde it so jealously. How many hundreds of thousands of dollars is it worth for an individual? Consider the massive destruction of wealth entailed in restricting people's ability to reside and work in the US just because they exceed some quota.

    I do not want to get rid of national citizenship. But citizenship must be properly recognized for what it is. Most importantly, unlike residence, citizenship is not a right. It is an entitlement granted as a means to an end, that of electing and serving in a sound government. Citizenries of course have the right as associations of individuals to decide how new residents become members. Where they overstep their legitimacy is when they abrogate individual rights.

    In particular, restricted immigration is in toto the greatest rights abrogation committed by the US today.

  • ||

    Also you are never going to get unanimous consent on anything so that is simply ridiculous. Even someones right to own property is not going to be consented by everyone so you might as well get rid of the private enterprise since not everyone is going to give unanimous consent.

    It case it's still not clear, government's need unanimous consent in order to claim that all unowned property, commons, and rights of way are effectively government property rather than governed property.

    The property rights of individuals and voluntary associations, on the other hand, are fundamental and primary. In particular, individuals do not need unanimous consent to claim their own property since they are making no claims to anyone else's property or to broad swaths of unowned property, commons, or rights of way.

  • Edwin||

    no they don't

    I could find you plenty of libertarians who are against any concept of public property, and those public roads still work just fine and everyone drives on them and their legal standing remains the same.

    You don't need UNANIMOUS consent, just enough consent that people vote for you/your guy.

  • ||

    Maybe my position wasn't clear. I am arguing that no one owns rights of way and that, regardless of whether the public improves the right of way, the public does not acquire a property right over the right of way and thus has no right to prevent trespass on it.

    I allowed that unanimous consent of all property owners throughout the dominion would allow the government to prevent trespass on rights of way. Is that mistaken?

  • Edwin||

    eh...

    I'm not even exactly sure what you're trying to say. You're talking too theoretically for stuff that already has a legal establishment in the real world.

    There are these things called roads. They are payed for and built by municipalities and state and the federal government. They are open to the public - hence they are called "public property". There is no such thing as trespassing on them, because anybody can use them in the first place.

    The only thing the government can do is make laws dealing with how various indivduals and groups of indioviduals use the roads - i.e. traffic safety laws, parking laws, bus-stop laws (and permits), parade laws, etc.

    That's it. That's all there is to it.

    Whatever you're trying to say, say it better, 'cause I don't really get what you're saying.

  • ||

    One familiar argument against free migration is that the public owns the roads and, consequently, if the public doesn't want certain people on them, the public can deny their access. The back-and-forth of the argument plays out pretty much as it always does upthread just above your first comment.

    My position sounds pretty much identical to yours: the right of property implies common law rights of way. Preventing travel on those rights of way necessarily abrogates the rights of the property owners along the right of way.

    Perhaps the confusion is that I call rights of way effectively unowned. That should probably be qualified to say that they are effectively unowned with regards to trespass. Otherwise, they wouldn't be much of a right of way, would they.

  • ||

    Porous borders and the welfare state go together like flies and a pile of shit.

    Would you like to see some immigrant crime? Come to the Central Valley of California and visit Visalia or Fresno.

    They are having a wave of gang crime, shootings and murder. In a town of 100,000 people, Visalia has already this year had four homicides. Every single one of them gang related and Hispanic.

    Our national parks and their trout streams have been irreparably harmed by Ganga growers dumping pesticides into the feeder streams. This has virtually eliminated the wild trout populations. In some areas, hikers are warned not to go because the trails are booby trapped.

    Most of the growers smuggle in illegals to tend these gardens.

    Your article is a bunch of pure bullshit.

    Get out of LA and come up to the real ghetto in the central Valley of CA just above Bakersfield and below Fresno.

    See the REAL american dream. Most local high schools are in lockdown at least once per month for shootings.

    Siren are running all of the time. The north side of Visalia is called Iraq. Indeed, the dream of unlimited immigration is here in America.

    Come see and experience the dream.

    You guys are completely full of shit.

    CA is broke having bankrolled nearly 65% of the entire Hispanic illegal population.

    Police cannot ask in Hispanic communities about citizenship status because the informants fear RETALIATION.

    Please come live here on the northside and watch the nortenos and surenos go at it day after day.

    Perhaps you will change your mind.

    Maybe you will even study some economics and drop the political bullshit.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Why would someone go to Visalia or Fresno to collect welfare? If you were going to do that, you'd go to a nicer town. They are obviously drawn there because of jobs available in Visalia or Fresno.

  • BrianM||

    Your comment is bullshit I live in Fresno. No problem here. It's always been the Appalachia of the West. Drop the hyperbole. This article was about the aggregate. Thus, there could be locales w/ a little above average and a little lower than average. But good job at the histrionics.

  • Mike K.||

    It's great that Mr. Chapman compiled all these stats for his article to demonstrate how few illegal immigrants commit crimes. The one glaring omission is the number of illegal immigrants that have arrest warrants for crimes outstanding, but have fled back across the border. Having worked in law enforcement for over a decade now, I can say that adding this data into the mix would significantly alter the picture.

    A couple of years ago the LA Times published a story about the number of illegal immigrants had committed murders, have warrants outstanding, and have fled the country. To say the least the number was outstanding, and to leave this critical piece of information out of the discussion is a great disservice.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Citation please.

  • ||

    Mr Chapman you are a dumb ass. Where I grew up in California it was not only close to the border but many farms as well and we had our house broken into once or twice a year on average. We didn't get robbed per se but food was usually stolen and the bathroom used. They didn't clean out the fridge usually just took enough to keep moving along. And even though they were thieves they were polite enough to not to flush their used toilet paper because they didn't want to mess up our plumbing. And while it doesn't compare to murder literally cleaning up other peoples shit doesn't appeal to me at all. were these people criminals? Lets see breaking and entering, petty theft and destruction of property but hey their only here to do jobs that Americans won't do right? What A dumb ass

  • Mike Laursen||

    Hmm, what's the opposite of damning with faint praise. You just praised with faint condemnation.

  • ||

    I understand you are arguing the narrow point that illegals are not committing violent crimes to the extent claimed, but clearly your larger argument is that illegals are not that at all, that they are simply people coming here for a better life. What is wrong with having laws regarding immigration. It's really simple.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Well, of course its the case that there is a mixture of illegal aliens that are not involved in crime and those who are. Being against the current immigration laws, which are pretty screwed up and unfair, does not imply being against any laws regarding immigration.

  • ||

    I thought Reason was a Libertarian based magazine. Did I miss something? Apparently I did, because I can't for the life of me figure out why a Libertarian would believe in "free movement".

    I thought Libertarians believed in property rights, personnal responsiblity and the rule of law. I must have missed something though, admittedly I am new to this philosophy so I might be confused.

    I don't care about the crime statistics of illegal immigrants...they have already broke the law meant to protect my property and the property of my neighbors.

    As soon as they use goods, services, or products provided by my tax dollars or they drive down the roads, or cut through someone's property they are infringing on my rights and those of my neighbors.

    The bottom line? It isn't theirs and they are not legally or contractually allowed to use it. Period.

    States and Nations have borders for a reason. Chapman's argument is moot, a strawman and a complete waste of the point.

    And worse, most of the state's and this Federal Government protect those breaking the law and illegally accessing property that does not belong to them...instead of the property holders rights to their property.

    Try Again.

    cl

  • ||

    I thought Libertarians believed in property rights, personnal responsiblity and the rule of law.

    Not quite. Libertarians believe that society is best organized when people's individual rights are secured. Responsibility comes into play because the observation of individual rights means that you cannot force anyone to take care of you. You are responsible for yourself.

    The rule of law, on the other hand, really applies only insofar as the law is legitimate. Laws that abrogate individual rights are not legitimate and the rule of law in those cases is exactly not libertarian.

    Immigration law, to the extent that it restricts migration beyond the minimum necessary to protect the compelling public interest -- i.e., reasonably ensuring the immigrant is not a health threat, material felon, terrorist, or foreign agent -- is not libertarian as it violates the right of movement of individuals for no legitimate reason.

    I am new to this philosophy so I might be confused.

    As to the critical understanding of the proper placement of individual rights and government powers, you can start with Jefferson:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men
  • ||

    Of course, that's my take on it. There are libertarians who don't believe in open borders or who believe in open borders only after the welfare state is reined in.

    So don't let my position on this one issue chase you away from the libertarian philosophy. Just read it as an approach that really does believe that individual rights are paramount and that everyone, regardless of where they are born, is created equal.

  • ||

    We last had high employment after Operation Wetback in the 50s. Unemployment rose after immigration controls loosened in the 60s, and jumped in the 80s after amnesty became a routine effort.
    Of course, if the USA's industrial base hadn't been destroyed by the Democrats we could easily absorb more immigrants.
    I'm unemployed.

  • ||

    I don't think the unemployment picture tells the story you try to write for it.

    For one, unemployment has never since been as low as it was just prior to Operation Wetback. And the lowest point since Operation Wetback was the solid five years following the 1965 immigration liberalization.

    Of course it is well known that, excepting the recent recession, unemployment has been consistently lower over the last two decades than it was prior to the 1986 amnesty legislation.

    It's not definitely the case that more liberal migration causes lower unemployment, but there are quite good arguments for why that would be the trend.

  • ||

    How fake do you think those unemployment numbers are?

    Have you read Emmanual Todd on fake US financial numbers? (He's not talking unemployment #s in particular)

    I suspect we get cynical about different things.

  • ||

    Steve's article suffers from too much relativism when quoting stats. Even small percentages of illegals represent large numbers of crimes. Those crimes would not have been committed if those illegals were not here.

  • ||

    It is simple: Just do unto other nations, as those nations do unto America. If Mexico in particular, and all South American elitist dictators in general want to export their bravest young people to work for slave wages in America, and remit enough US dollars to keep their relatives in Latin America from revolting, then Americans must be shown the same rights, rule of law, and safety from bribe seeking officials in Latin American nations, as are shown our visitors from those nations, legal or not. Their dictators are not unaware that the bravest and most hard working of their exported citizens are also the most dangerous to dictators. Our illegal aliens are the exact men and women absolutely committed to freedom, to work, to live, and to pursue life, liberty and happiness. Were we to return all our legal and illegal aliens, over a five year period, we could count on those hard working folks disposing of any number of their native land's dictators, timely. The dictators know this, and do not want their toughest and most resourceful people back, they want the billions in remittances to continue. Immediate substitution of US grown, regulated, taxed, and distributed drugs, excepting tobacco, that kills 400,000 Americans each year, will end the mindless corruption that kills hundreds of South American police and their relatives, yearly, and pours billions of dollars of US taxpayer's money down US police union's limitless toy purchase programs yearly. The release of all non-violent drug offenders imprisoned in America will reduce the insanity of teaching our children how to be smarter criminals, or same sex bed warmers for serious criminals, or both. We do not need to substitute the deadly machine gun fire that Americans would be greeted with, on entering Mexico with untaxed goods, we just need to address the issue with the elitist dictators of South America to make clear that until our senior citizens, and young retirees, or adventurers can come to their country and set up house keeping, employing maids, butlers, and business employees, at legal wages, with proper payroll taxes included, then no immigrants from their countries will be allowed to do those things in America. A five year plan to open all the Americas to free trade, work and travel, will result in our neighbor's opening their borders, rule of law, real estate, and business to Americans, or giving up their political perks, and finding honest jobs, when their victims say "Enough".

  • ||

    yea dont know where you got your info ive been robbed twice and rear ended with no insurance all by illegal immigrants no i had insurance he did not and who is paying for all the bull shit hospital bills me and every other hard working American!!!!

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    A report by the F.B.I. states that 26.4 % of federal inmates are foreigners .
    A 2007 report from the Pew Hispanic Center states that those sentenced to Federal Crimes in 2007, non-citizen Hispanics were 74% of immigrants
    2009 F.B.I.`S Most Wanted list, 57% were foreigners !
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