In April, I wrote a column about how the use of Title 42 not to follow due process and adequately process the removal of migrants who illegally entered the U.S. was outdated, given that the Covid epidemic had all but disappeared. On November 15, a federal judge agreed with me and struck it down.
Judge Emmet G. Sullivan issued a decision vacating and ending Title 42, more than two and a half years after the public health policy went into effect, a political tool to allow the U.S. to avoid its constitutional requirements of equal application of the law to all people, regardless of their immigration status. From the moment that the Trump administration put Title 42 into effect In March 2020 concerning people crossing the U.S. border, there were nearly 2.5 million summary expulsions.
After the court decision, this polemic issue can no longer be swept under the rug and must be discussed, negotiated, and resolved.
For background, Title 42, which both the Trump and Biden administrations used to justify the denial of immigrants at the borders, even those wanting to apply for political asylum, as well as to expel any immigrants who had already entered illegally, thus depriving them of their constitutional rights to due process, allowed the US Border Patrol and US Customs and Border Protection to prohibit the entry of persons who potentially posed a health risk by being subject to previously-announced travel restrictions or because by unlawfully entering the country to bypass health-screening measures. After the CDC and FAA said that Covid was not an issue that should infringe on our liberties and freedoms anymore, the only logical conclusion was the death of Title 42.
The Biden administration’s granting exceptions to its application of Title 42 for certain Ukrainians showed that it does not respect the laws governing the nation. Now the only thing left to do is to FIX OUR IMMIGRATION SYSTEM! As long as our rhetoric, values, and laws don’t align, hundreds of thousands of foreign nationals will be able to enter the U.S. and disappear into the cracks. The only way to avoid this is to have a system that applies to ALL, that allows everyone a chance to present their case, and if they don’t meet muster (which a significant majority would not) to send them home, leaving a denial on their record which does not allow them to try again. This requires massive resources and an organized legal system. Until we prioritize this situation and practice what we preach (follow and enforce our laws and exude the principles that make this country what it purports to be), this problem will only continue to persist and get progressively worse, and everyone will lose.