This appears to be a regular rallying cry of the Trump administration. Undocumented immigrants are bringing their drugs.
In July of 2017, during a press briefing, Trump stated this about how drugs were smuggled into the country:
“As horrible as it sounds, when they throw the large sacks of drugs over, and if you have people on the other side of the wall, you don’t see them — they hit you on the head with 60 pounds of stuff? It’s over.”
There hasn’t been a single report of anyone getting hit on the head with a bag of drugs flung over a border wall or fence.
U.S. Border Patrol reports indicate that the majority of drugs trafficked into our country from Mexico are transported in cars that are not driven by undocumented immigrants.
Since all vehicles entering the United States must go through a U.S. port of entry, it makes no sense that the cartel would hire someone without valid documentation to make that trip.
In fact, the majority of drivers smuggling drugs into the U.S. either have valid documentation (such as a U.S. passport) or they are U.S. citizens. This would include unsuspecting U.S. citizens. Border patrol officers have found an increasing number of magnetized cylinders, containing drugs, placed underneath the cars of unsuspecting border crossers in the “trusted traveler” lane (the SENTRI program).
So while it’s true that we have a very serious problem with drugs coming across the Mexican border, it not true that it’s undocumented immigrants who are doing the driving (or tunneling, sailing or flying).
President Trump and his administration’s assertions regarding immigrants and crime are not supported by research or crime statistics. In light of what many perceive as Trump's tendency to seek revenge against those he perceives have wronged him, it’s possible that his history of legal troubles in Mexico may be influencing his current stance toward both the country, and its people, with Central American refugees being grouped in by proxy. Intention is always difficult to determine with certainty, but it's worth exploring.
Dr. Ruben Rumbaut (and colleagues), a sociologist and expert on immigration from University of California, Irvine, has this to say about the myth of immigrants and crime:
“Periods of increased immigration have historically been accompanied by nativist alarms, perceptions of threat, and pervasive stereotypes of newcomers, particularly during economic downturns or national crises … and when immigrants have arrived en masse and differed substantially from the native-born in religion, language, physical appearance, and world region of origin. The present period is no exception—with the twist that “illegal immigrants” are now singled out with added animus and framed as harbingers of crime.”
I couldn't have said it better myself...
Dr. Michelle Martin is a social worker, policy specialist and Assistant Professor at California State University, Fullerton in the Department of Social Work, where she teaches social welfare policy, and researches dynamics related to immigrants, political asylum-seekers, refugees and other displaced populations.