It’s time to stop playing politics with immigrants’ lives – Orange County Register

During his 2020 election campaign, President Biden pledged to strengthen our country by supporting and welcoming immigrants. Early in his presidency, he began taking steps in this direction.

On his first day in office, Biden proclaimed an end to his predecessor’s “Muslim ban,” which summarily banned immigration from several Muslim-majority countries. And in February 2021, Biden introduced an executive order aimed at undoing some of the damage the Trump administration did to our immigration system, from family separations to backlogs in our asylum system.

“Securing our borders does not require us to ignore the humanity of those who seek to cross them,” Biden said at the time. “The United States is also not safer when resources that should be invested in policies targeting real threats, such as drug cartels and human traffickers, are wasted on efforts to thwart legitimate asylum seekers. »

Biden seemed to understand that being “tough” does not mean supporting cruel and ineffective policies. Unfortunately, as immigration has become a polarizing topic, the administration has moved away from this more humane approach.

Instead, in many ways, Biden actually continued on Trump’s path on immigration.

For example, the Trump administration implemented a rule called Title 42 at the height of the COVID pandemic, which severely limited entry into the United States – supposedly to protect public health. Biden continued to implement this policy for years, even without the flimsy public health rationale.

The bipartisan border bill Biden recently approved includes funding for a border wall he promised not to fund — as well as new asylum restrictions and a measure that would allow the president to close completely the border. Biden also plans to use the same authority that the Trump administration invoked in its Muslim ban to restrict access to asylum.

A few weeks ago, Biden and Trump visited the US-Mexico border separately. Instead of proposing real solutions to support our immigration system, Biden supported the failed Senate bill — and even went so far as to invite Trump to “join him” in working on it.

During his State of the Union address in March, Biden had the opportunity to distinguish himself from Trump. Instead, his speech demonstrated a strong disconnect between his rhetoric and his actions.

Biden said he would not demonize immigrants, but in the same speech used the offensive term “illegal immigrant.” No human being is “illegal”. Continuing to repeat this language is dehumanizing and puts immigrant communities at risk of violence. (Biden later said he regretted using the term, but did not apologize for using it.)

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