Stop Importing Ungrateful, Spoiled Criminals


April 25, 2024

By Brian Lonergan

For the last several decades, one of the best propaganda tools for illegal immigration activists in America has been “The New Colossus,” the Emma Lazarus poem on display at the base of the Statue of Liberty. Specifically, the line in the poem stating “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free” has been adopted as America’s de facto immigration policy by those who seek loosening the rules for accepting foreign nationals.

It has been an effective tool because of the way it portrays those seeking residence here. It is difficult to imagine wanting to withhold charity and empathy from tired, poor, huddled masses yearning to breathe free. For many of those seeking illegal entry into America today, however, that description does not apply. A more accurate verse would be: “Give me your ungrateful, your violent, your criminal element yearning to wreak mayhem.”

The ugly truth is that far too many of those forcing their way into the United States today have criminal histories, gang affiliations, and may be on terror watchlists. Even among those who do not fit those categories, too many have shrewdly deduced that America’s weak leadership makes the nation ripe for exploitation. Aside from capital offenses, there are few crimes or antisocial behaviors that will get an illegal alien deported today. Because of that, today’s migrants are largely petulant, entitled, and demanding.

If that sounds harsh, just look at just a few of the plentiful news reports that support the point. A group of “newcomers” were captured on video fighting on a busy Manhattan street, one swinging what appeared to be a pipe at others while motorists tried to pass. The incident took place in broad daylight in front of The Row, a former luxury hotel that has since been co-opted as housing for migrants. The scene resembled what one might expect in Caracas or Tegucigalpa, but this is what New York City is today, thanks to the influx of illegal aliens and the adoption of policies that enable them.  

Another viral video from Carlsbad, California, showed how a boat with about 20 illegal aliens roared onto a beach, stunning onlookers as the human cargo ran to a waiting SUV and sped off.

Officials at the highest levels of our government fetishize illegal aliens, tell them they are better people than U.S. citizens, and refuse to enforce laws that would deport them.

Illegal aliens in Denver along with an advocacy group are publicly complaining that the city’s Asylum Seekers Program is “insufficient” and “offensive.” The program offers six months of free housing, food assistance and workforce training. Denver’s mayor also recently announced he would be cutting the city’s emergency services budget to fund the needs of migrants.   

In East Harlem, New York., a high school soccer game was canceled after a group of what appeared to be African migrants refused to leave the field. According to one of the coaches who asked the group to leave, the response he got was, “You know what? F—it, we don’t have to leave, we can do whatever we want.”

We can do whatever we want. If ever there was a line that perfectly described the attitude of many of today’s migrants, considering our government’s feckless policies, that is it. And why shouldn’t they believe that? Officials at the highest levels of our government fetishize illegal aliens, tell them they are better people than U.S. citizens, and refuse to enforce laws that would deport them.

Once illegal aliens are settled in the U.S., sanctuary mayors continue to roll out the red carpet. They take money away from programs designed to help poor Americans and re-direct it to migrants. Drivers’ licenses, voting rights, and even positions on city election commissions are bestowed on people with no legal right to be in the country. Far from the narrative of immigrants hiding in the shadows, those here illegally today know they are unlikely to be deported—even for committing crimes—because sanctuary politicians will refuse to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement.

Do any of the incidents above sound like the actions of humble folk who appreciate the opportunities that America has given them to work toward their dreams, even though they are here illegally? One of the most frequent complaints about modern American society is that our high standard of living had made our population lazy, entitled, and unappreciative. There is some truth to that, and we have work to do with our own citizenry to correct it. It also raises the question of why we are importing more people with the same qualities.   

Brian Lonergan is director of communications at the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) in Washington, D.C, and co-host of IRLI’s “No Border, No Country” podcast.

Also published at Chronicles, April 25, 2024.

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