• News
  • Celebrities
  • Finance
  • Crypto
  • Travel
  • Entertainment
  • Health
  • Others

What Does ‘Secure the Border’ Actually Mean?

Alan Bersin, the commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, was asked a good question during a talk this afternoon hosted by the Migration Policy Insitute: Securing the border is his job, but what exactly does he consider a secure border?

It’s an interesting question, particularly given the debate over when the country should take on comprehensive immigration reform to deal with the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants already in the country. One side of the debate argues the borders must be secured before the government can take steps to allow some of those illegal immigrants to gain legal status. On the other side — the one the Obama administration has supported — reform advocates argue that providing paths to legalization for some illegal immigrants is necessary to reducing tensions and creating secure borders. But neither side seems to provide a clear answer as to what factors would indicate that the border was officially “secure.”

Bersin did not make such a pronouncement either, but he did provide some clarification into the Obama administration’s objectives. “What we mean by border security is public safety, and this perception in the community that the border is being reasonably managed,” he said.

It’s possible to measure public safety: The FBI and other organizations track rates of violent crime and property crime across the country. But perception is trickier to define. While some polls have indicated that residents of border regions feel safe, rhetoric among some officials encourages high levels of fear about illegal immigration. Warranted or not, this definition means the border cannot be secure unless all residents of border regions think it is secure — a seemingly impossible feat given the length of the border and the differences of opinion on the issue.

The problem is that no one seems to be exactly sure how many resources should be directed at the border. After National Guard troops were deployed to the southern border in recent months, national security experts argued that the government had done too little research to determine what methods were actually effective at keeping illegal immigrants and smuggled items from crossing the border. “We frankly don’t have a very good understanding of what we should invest more in and where we should spend our resources,” Jack Riley, director of the RAND National Defense Research Institute, told Politico last month.

When Bersin was asked how many agents, roughly, would be needed to secure the border, he hedged. “We need to obtain a secure southwest border to say how many agents we need,” he said.

On the one hand, this makes sense: The border is 1,950 miles long, and needs for agents shift as migrants and smugglers change their routes for entering the country. But the lack of specifics seems to leave a large window for anti-comprehensive immigration reform to demand more border patrol, whether or not it is actually increasing safety and security.

There are currently 20,000 Border Patrol agents along the U.S.-Mexico border — higher than at any time in the country’s history. The Obama administration argues the border is at its most secure point in history, citing lower rates of illegal immigration and increased enforcement within the country.

But in the end, securing the border fully — or completely eliminating illegal immigration — is impossible while illegal immigrants can still find work in the U.S., Bersin said. “Absent comprehensive immigration reform, people will try to enter the country illegally,” he said. “We will try to stop that, and we are doing that better than ever. But absent reform, that will continue.”

If Republicans define a secure border in absolute terms, then, it seems likely gridlock over immigration reform will continue.

Discussion & Comments (0)

    Recent Articles

    • Things You Should Know about North America

      Things You Should Know about North America

      Get to know more about North America.

    • Eurovision 2010 Paula Seling Unpredictable Contest

      Eurovision 2010 Paula Seling Unpredictable Contest

      Paula Seling's experience on the Eurovision stage led her to declare that "Eurovision is an unpredictable contest". Which may explain the success of the young Lena from Germany, about whom the predictions before the event did not offer much chances for victory.

    • VIPRow.me - The Best Sports Streaming Website Today

      VIPRow.me - The Best Sports Streaming Website Today

      Have you ever contemplated creating a user-friendly site dedicated to sports-related free live streaming channels?

    • Learn How To Download, Install, And Use The Xnxubd 2022 Frame App

      Learn How To Download, Install, And Use The Xnxubd 2022 Frame App

      XNXUBD 2022 Nvidia users are able to watch thousands of videos and other contents online. XNXUBD 2022 Nvidia New is a piece of software that enables people to watch videos online without having to pay for memberships. On a graphics card, the XNXubd also provides some of the best gaming and virtual reality experiences.

    • Xvideostudio Video Editor Apk Free Download For Pc Full Version In 2022

      Xvideostudio Video Editor Apk Free Download For Pc Full Version In 2022

      A new edition of the Video Editor Apk for xVideostudio.Video Studio has all the latest features, including support for multiple video download formats in HD, FHD, and even 4K resolutions.

    • 9 Best Lotion For Masturbation - Popular Choice For 2022

      9 Best Lotion For Masturbation - Popular Choice For 2022

      Masturbation is a common activity for men and women. It's a natural and risk-free way to explore your body, experience pleasure, and release sexual tension.

    • Reasons Why You Need To Stop Watching Movies From Sflix

      Reasons Why You Need To Stop Watching Movies From Sflix

      Without having to sign up or pay anything, you can watch movies online for free with SFlix. It has more than 10,000 movies and television shows.

    • Coi Leray Mom And Dad's Family History & Wife, Explained

      Coi Leray Mom And Dad's Family History & Wife, Explained

      Coi Leray Collins (born May 11, 1997) is a rapper from the United States. Leray started publishing songs to SoundCloud in 2014, and in 2018 she released her breakthrough track "Huddy" as well as her first mixtape, Everythingcoz.

    • Listen And Download Music On MyFreeMP3 For Free

      Listen And Download Music On MyFreeMP3 For Free

      Are you in a bind and looking for a place to obtain free mp3 songs? Never again will you need to bother, since this article has everything necessary to obtain your solution. Download free music from MyfreeMP3.com, one of the world's most popular websites.