Thanks, Schumer! Get ready for a newer and bigger Central American migrant caravan
Despite the current caravan migrant privations in Tijuana, most notably the business of having to wait one's turn to file for asylum for free at the border, obviously, there has been enough in it for the caravan migrants to entice formation of a new caravan, this one bigger and probably better organized than the last one.
Here's the news:
Another migrant caravan – with estimates of as many as 15,000 participants – is preparing to leave Honduras on January 15, according to migrant rights advocates and Spanish-language media.
"They say they are even bigger and stronger than the last caravan," said Irma Garrido, a member of the migrant advocacy group Reactiva Tijuana Foundation.
There's also this:
Using social media sites such as WhatsApp and Facebook, people are spreading the word about another, bigger caravan planning to leave Honduras on Jan. 15, larger than the October caravan that stalled out in Tijuana in the hopes of reaching the U.S.
Karen Valladares, who works at the Foro Nacional para las Migraciones en Honduras (the National Forum for Migration in Honduras), said the caravan forming in Honduras has even more support and interest than the caravan that recently arrived in Tijuana because people saw how traveling together improves chances of survival and safety.
Word is getting out that all you have to do is come here, and either await your zero-cost asylum application as the Mexicans house, feed, and medically treat you or else cross over illegally, sometimes with the aid of a Democratic congressperson, for instant customer service, turning yourself in to the Border Patrol, and then soon become free to walk around the country. No need to worry about that criminal record or those diseases you may be spreading to citizens; U.S. law says that what you want is paramount and your interests come above the interests of the citizens. And if you manage to insult your Mexican hosts and make them angry, heck, you're in the States, dining in a chic Dallas restaurant, ahead of the others, scot-free.
Apparently, that's what's gotten out in places such as Honduras, and that's why it's been so easy to form a newer, bigger caravan.
Let's thank the person most responsible for this: New York's Senate minority leader, Charles Schumer, who is willing to countenance a government shutdown over a piddly $5 billion for a border wall. That battle is likely a factor in the current caravan formation: the U.S. government is shut down over the building of a border wall, and it doesn't particularly look as though any funds for it are going to ensure that it gets built, what with Schumer blocking the matter in the Senate. No wall, easier entry. Or maybe there will be a wall, in which case, you want to slip through as quickly as possible, before the slats go up. Either way, word it out that the time to roll in is now.
Once in, illegal aliens and asylum-seekers can avail themselves of legal U.S. jobs at U.S. wages as they wait for their cases to be decided by a judge some three years out, and then avail themselves of vast taxpayer-paid benefit packages, particularly if their asylum requests are approved. That's tens of thousands in free money for housing, food, medical care, and pretty much everything else.
The entitlement sense is quite amazing. The migrant organizers are claiming that the group will go only as far as southern Mexico, to take advantage of pro-offered jobs there, but they've issued conditions for that – that Mexico really does deliver those jobs. That's a big if, because who knows if these unvetted people are even employable?
This new caravan plans to stop in Chiapas, a southern state in Mexico, if work is guaranteed there, she said.
Mexico's President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has pledged visas and work in Mexico for Central American migrants. In his inauguration speech, he pledged public works projects like planting two million trees and construction of his Maya Train, a 1,500-kilometer railroad.
The $8 billion project is expected to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in southern states of Mexico.
Otherwise, it's off to the States, where the prospect of assimilating into the underclass and living for free is, for quite a few, more attractive. It's likely that's the real plan, but the organizers don't want Tijuana's officials to know that, given Tijuana's disgust with migrant criminality and anger over the shutdown of the U.S. border, which imposes a tremendous cost onto Tijuana's law-abiding people.
But the caravan is coming, and that's because the incentives for it are there. Apparently, enough cases are being approved at U.S. border stops to entice more phony asylum-seeking and, for those who don't want to wait in line, illegal entry with catch and release. That's why, so we now see the new caravan forming. What's more, President Trump's threat to cut off aid to Central America is kind of hollow, given that he made that earlier if the caravan wasn't stopped, and everyone can see that actually, Central America got promised more aid. A president can go to that well only once.
Somehow, there's reason to doubt that the caravan is really going to be content staying in southern Mexico, given the high hopes the organizers have used to whip up enthusiasm for the free stuff.
Once again, Americans have just one line of defense: the angry Mexican people, who don't want thousands of military-aged young men without jobs or education foisted upon them. This time, it's the Chiapas people who are protesting:
On Facebook, reaction in Chiapas to news of a second caravan was not all favorable.
"Well, now the government does something. That work is for Mexicans that need it," said Anna Pérez from Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico on Facebook. "Opportunistic people who just want to take advantage of the Mexicans."
Obviously, the Tijuana people were to a certain extent ignored, and it's just as likely that the Chiapas people could be as well. But Mexico City doesn't like this kind of unrest spreading to multiple cities, and that may be a cue for them to stop this. For now, all that's to be done is to wait and see. What we see here is incentive upon incentive out there to migrate illegally, with no end in sight...at least until these countries empty out. Stand up and take a bow, Chuckie Schumer.
Image credit: Screen shot from CBS Morning News.