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Fortifying Our Nation: The Critical Need to Secure America's Borders. By Nick Softy- FAIR

The ongoing border crisis in the United States has reached alarming proportions.

Under President Biden, more than 8 million illegal immigrants have been apprehended, and

another 1.7 million “gotaways” have evaded Border Patrol. In fiscal year 2023, there were

more than 3.2 million illegal aliens encountered at U.S. borders, which is the most in

American history. This is more than all four years of the Trump administration combined.

The cost of this record level of immigration is massive, with illegal immigration costing U.S.

taxpayers over $150 billion every single year. In Maryland, the estimated 379,000 illegal

aliens, and their 131,000 U.S. born children, cost Maryland taxpayers $3.12 billion per year.

Make no mistake, this is a national crisis that demands immediate action and

comprehensive solutions. The border crisis jeopardizes national security, as the

continuation of the Biden administration’s lax immigration policies are putting American

communities at risk. The escalating number of border crossers on the FBI’s terrorist

watchlist is deeply concerning, with a single-year record of 172 terrorists being

encountered between the ports of entry at the southern border. If you add the number of

suspected terrorists encountered at official ports of entry, then the number rises to 736

terror suspects attempting to gain entry into the interior of the United States. We must

remember that it only took 18 hijackers (3 of the 9/11 hijackers were illegal aliens) to

commit the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that murdered 2,977 people and injured

thousands more.

In neighborhoods across the United States, the border crisis is flooding communities

with deadly drugs and dangerous criminals. Between fiscal years 2020 and 2024, CBP

arrested 2,143 known gang members, including notorious groups like MS-13, the 18th

Street Gang, and the Surenos (groups of loosely affiliated gangs that pay tribute to the

Mexican Mafia). Likewise, the infiltration of cartels and gangs from Venezuela, such a

“Tren de Aragua”, further exacerbates the security concerns. In 2023, CBP detained 38

suspected Tren de Aragua members, with their criminal activities ranging from human

trafficking to drug trafficking. In 2023, CBP seized 27,000 pounds of fentanyl coming across


the southern border, which is enough to kill the entire population of North America, twice


In addition to being an affront to national security, the border policies of the Biden

administration have created a humanitarian crisis. In fiscal year 2023, a staggering 137,992

unaccompanied children were encountered by Customs and Border Protection (CBP). To

put this into perspective, that is nearly enough children to fill up the Baltimore Ravens’

football stadium twice over. The vulnerability of these children extends beyond the

immediate challenges of migration, as approximately 69 percent of the foreign nationals

who were victims of sex trafficking were brought into the U.S. with the intention of sexual

exploitation. Ignorance of these concerns only perpetuates a system that endangers lives

and undermines the foundations of a secure and prosperous nation.

In light of these alarming statistics, it is imperative that lawmakers and community

members address both the national security concerns and distressing humanitarian

consequences arising from the Biden administration’s border policies. There is a dire need

for comprehensive and common-sense immigration reform. The United States is a sacred

space for its citizens, and it cannot remain a healthy nation while its borders remain under

siege. As American citizens, we must realize that a nation cannot be self-sustaining without

strong borders and a robust enforcement of its immigration laws.

As the national debate on immigration reform continues, the Federation for American

Immigration Reform (FAIR) has remained at the forefront of advancing policies and legal

processes that fight mass uncontrolled immigration, sanctuary cities, and any abuse of our

immigration system. For over 40 years, FAIR’s advocacy on the local, state, and federal levels

continue to have a tremendous impact on U.S. immigration policy. While the challenges are

significant, FAIR is fearless in the face of hostility, and provides hope for a better future

where immigration is conducted in a responsible, legal manner that benefits all Americans.

FAIR invites you to join our Immigration Activist Network. FAIR’s Activist Network

spans all 50 states, and is composed of dedicated individuals who believe that America’s

immigration policies should be designed to benefit U.S. citizens and legal residents. There

are so many ways to get involved in FAIR’s activist work, like calling or emailing your state,

local or federal representatives; attending virtual or in-person strategy meetings; and

mobilizing like-minded individuals to attend hearings and rallies in favor of sensible


immigration reforms. For more information, go to WWW.FAIRUS.ORG or contact me at

Nick Softy is a field representative for the Federation for American Immigration Reform

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