18:20 GMT15 May 2021
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    There have been multiple reports about a surge in the number of unaccompanied minors arriving at the US southern border. While Joe Biden is yet to admit the situation is spiralling out of control, former US President Donald Trump denounced Biden’s immigration policy last week, accusing him of creating a “spiralling” tsunami at the US-Mexico border.

    Mark Dankof, a San-Antonio resident, former US Senate candidate, and investigative journalist, has shared his thoughts on Joe Biden's immigration policy and the possible outcome of what may turn into an "extremely troublesome" situation at the US-Mexico border.

    Sputnik: What do you make of the Biden administration’s migration policy pivot?

    Mark Dankof: I'm not a Joe Biden fan, and I'm certainly not a fan of his migration policies. I do not oppose all immigration to the United States. Some people might get the impression that I do. That's not true. I'm married to a Colombian immigrant to the United States, who came to this country with her family legitimately over 50 years ago. And when you have vetted migration and people’s bona fides check out, and they become good citizens of the United States and they learn the English language - I think that's fine. And it's certainly proven to be the case in my extended family. I think when you have unvetted migration to this country, especially from the southern border, massive numbers of people are coming here illegally. There are incidents in San Antonio where I live every day, where trucks are being found that are smuggling people into this country. There was a tragedy recently, I think in this case in Southern California, where a truck that was smuggling a bunch of these migrants was involved in an accident and the truck exploded, and a number of these people were tragically killed.

    So, the whole southern border of the United States seems to be wide open again. All kinds of people coming in here who are not being vetted in terms of their health, their criminal histories, why they're coming to the United States, this sort of thing. This is extremely troublesome. Of course, the Democratic Party has committed itself basically to an open border policy. I don't think you can maintain the safety or sovereignty of a country without having some sort of control over who is coming in and out of the country in question. 

    Sputnik: How can the inflow of illegal migrants affect the spread of COVID in Texas in the wake of disastrous ice storms? 

    Mark Dankof: Of course, there have already been reports in the British media and also in the Hispanic media in the state of Texas, multiple reports of people coming into the state of Texas illegally who proved to be COVID-19 positive. These are simply the ones who were caught. We don't know how many other ones are in this state illegally who have not been detected, who, in fact, may possess the COVID-19 virus. It's simply hard to determine because the situation with border control is absolutely laughable when you think of the fact that there's not much control going on. So, in this particular case, I think there's definitely a risk, a provable risk in terms of COVID-19. How serious that risk is, is hard to tell. But the other thing that is more telling over time, over many years, is the amount of crime that is being committed in the United States, heinous, illegal acts, in many cases, violent, felonious acts by people who are here illegally. In some cases, when they're detected, they're deported.

    There have been multiple cases of these people then illegally re-entering the United States again. So this is a very serious problem that's far more serious than Joe Biden and the Democratic Party want to acknowledge. But I think there's clearly a political factor here, and that is that when these people get into the United States, many of them eventually become voters in political elections, both in Texas and in California, Arizona, New Mexico, and obviously nationally in presidential elections every four years. They are overwhelmingly in numbers of people who will vote for the Democratic and not the Republican Party. So, clearly, there is a political advantage that the Democrats see to these policies. And I think ideologically, to be fair to them, I don't think that they see a difficulty with this in terms of these demographic changes and the fact that this has provably begun to alter the United States economically, politically, and culturally. 

    Sputnik: What about the vaccination? Is there enough vaccine shots in the state of Texas? 

    Mark Dankof: There clearly are not. I can speak personally on this score. My ninety-nine year old mother, who lives in a retirement community here in Texas, one that we just moved her to, was fortunate enough to get both of her Pfizer vaccines in this case, courtesy of an especially diligent retirement community that she moved into that has a nonprofit and Christian ministry orientation. The other retirement community that she left, which actually was a more expensive place to live, has not yet been able to give one COVID-19 vaccine to any of their residents in independent living. This is also an issue where people age 65 and over in the general population are dealing with vaccine scarcity.

    A migrant family crosses the border into El Paso, Texas, in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Friday, Feb. 26, 2021.
    © AP Photo / Christian Chavez
    A migrant family crosses the border into El Paso, Texas, in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Friday, Feb. 26, 2021.

    The other issue is that there have been front page stories in the San Antonio Express-News about frontline health care workers who have yet to have their first vaccination in some cases. So, there is a shortage here, there's no question about it - there's been much publicity about it. And when you add those shortages, which are impacting people over age 65 and impacting people who are professionally in healthcare, you add to that this unvetted illegal immigration coming into the United States from the southern border, one can see easily what Joe Biden refuses to acknowledge, and that is that this last factor, the illegal immigration, certainly has to contribute statistically to this problem. How serious the problem is, is very difficult to assess because it’s virtually impossible to get credible statistics on it, to get a real handle on just how big a threat it might prove to be. 

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    San Antonio, Texas, migration policy, Donald Trump, Joe Biden, US
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