Here's some fun facts for a sunny Monday:
Fewer Mexicans, whether legal, illegal, or barely legal, are coming to El Norte. That's a trend stretching back a decade or so.
The annual inbound migration from Mexico is about one-fifth or one-sixth of what it was about a decade ago, when it was about 500,000 each year, said Jeff Passel, a senior demographer at the Pew center. Demographers said outbound migration to Mexico has remained stable at about 150,000 annually.
Passel credits three main drivers of change:
• The Great Recession caused job losses across the board, including in construction and other industries that employed many undocumented immigrants. The economy has remained soft since.
• Increased U.S. border enforcement and associated factors including the dangers of crossing the border and the cost of hiring a smuggler, which can run as high as $3,000 per person.
• Shifts in Mexico that include demographic changes such as lower birthrates and social improvements such as greater educational attainment.
Demographers also credit economic development in Mexico for boosting employment rates.
Aye caramba! How can it be? Aren't we still being told by Dems and Reps alike (though more often by Reps for sure) that we've lost control of our southern border and that it's easier to walk across a couple of hundred miles of desert to freedom (i.e., working on a construction site or in a field somewhere) than it is even to score some bath salts at the local mall's Crabtree & Evelyn? Read more.
And yet, yet, yet, aren't the brave, the few, the mestizo that still make the trek creating a crime wave the likes we haven't seen since the Mustache Petes from southern Italy (hi, Grandpa Guida!) started stinking up the country with their olive oil and garlic-based cuisine and their romantical crooning and refused to assimilate? Put more plainly: Isn't crime caused by illegal immigration or even legal immigration a plague among the U.S. border with Mexico? Not on the American side, senor. Take it away, USA Today, who looked at the issue with the help of actual statistics and produced this:
The analysis found that rates of violent crime along the U.S.-Mexico border have been falling for years — even before the U.S. security buildup that has included thousands of law enforcement officers and expansion of a massive fence along the border.
U.S. border cities were statistically safer on average than other cities in their states. Those border cities, big and small, have maintained lower crime rates than the national average, which itself has been falling.
The appearance of an out-of-control border region, though, has had wide-ranging effects — stalling efforts to pass a national immigration reform law, fueling stringent anti-immigration laws in Arizona and elsewhere, and increasing the amount of federal tax dollars going to build more fencing and add security personnel along the southwestern border.
The perception of rising violence is so engrained that 83% of Americans said they believe the rate of violence along the southwestern border is higher than national rates, according to a recent USA TODAY/Gallup Poll of 999 adults.
Read that weep. For joy. And then outrage that folks desperate to come to our country for a better way of life for them and their children—folks who as a group pay payroll and even income taxes at astonishingly high rates for "undocumented" workers, who are less likely to engage in crime or use welfare than native-born Americans—are still being vilified in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.