Sometimes liberal journalists think they’re writing a story for one audience when really, their piece can be enjoyed by readers from all over the political spectrum. Such is the case with Betsy Woodruff’s recent Daily Beast article, where she wrings her hands for 2,000 words over a heart-wrenching sight: Thanks to “fear of Trump,” would-be illegal immigrants are no longer filling up a Mexican border shelter on their way into the U.S. In what she appears to believe is a horrifying development, Trump’s rhetoric and policies…are actually discouraging people from coming into the country!
Woodruff breathlessly tells us that more than a million people have stayed at Albergue San Juan Bosco, a shelter that has been operating in Nogales, Mexcio for the last 35 years. Yet, she says, “on the day I visited, it was almost empty.”
Cue the sad violin:
In the 35 years Gilda and Juan Francisco Loureiro have been running a shelter in northern Mexico for undocumented immigrants, they’ve never seen a week like this one.
In the decades since they opened the space to give migrants a place to shower and sleep before crossing the border, the shelter—with separate rooms full of bunkbeds for men and women—would regularly house 100 migrants per night. Sometimes, that number would hit 300 or more, and Gilda and Paco would pull out thin mattresses to fit everyone on the floor.
But today, those mattresses are neatly stacked in a closet, untouched. And the shelter is almost empty—no women travelers, and fewer than a dozen men. That’s despite the fact that April, with its mild weather, should be the busiest time of year for migrants. The place is all but dead. Gilda and Paco have never seen anything like it.
They can only think of one explanation: President Donald Trump.
The few immigrants still daring to make the trip told Woodruff that people are scared of Trump’s rhetoric. They told her that while the policies thus far haven’t changed significantly from the Obama administration, “the symbolism of Trump in the Oval Office and the threat of extended detention has already deterred many migrants.”
Woodruff uses plenty of “no human being is illegal” sentimentality as you would expect, but it’s hard to imagine there are too many Americans crying over their keyboards. Trump started off saying he was going to deport 11 million illegal immigrants and then build a wall across the entire Mexican border. Anything he does short of that…are you really going to complain? So far, he’s done nothing except ramp up enforcement of the law, and it’s already driven border crossings down 70%.
Apparently, this is all terrible news, but we can’t quite figure out why.