Trump’s State of the Union attack on migrants ignores their most characteristic trait.
In his State of the Union address Tuesday, President Trump once again presented his case for a wall on the United States’ southern border. There is plenty to debate about what such a wall would accomplish, but the president has no doubt: It would keep out bad stuff, such as drugs and guns, and bad people, who commit crimes and damage the U.S. economy.
The president’s claims about crime are factually dubious. As Christopher Ingraham noted in The Post last June, “The social-science research on immigration and crime is clear: Undocumented immigrants are considerably less likely to commit crime than native-born citizens.” Study after study rebuts the migrants-as-criminals argument. But it is the president’s characterization of migrants’ dire economic effect, and his depiction of American scarcity, with workers fighting over scraps, that also warrants debunking.