Sanctuary Cities: Are They Really Safe?
Our country has always been one to welcome immigrants looking for a new start on their lives. Indeed, we are a country of immigrants. And while we should never remove the welcome mat, we cannot ignore the needs of those who already occupy our great country and who work hard every day to make their homes decent places to live and proud places to grow. That means we must face the situation of sanctuary cities openly and honestly. It’s clearly a growing problem in the United States that is foolishly splitting on partisan lines to the detriment of the real issues at hand.
Sanctuary cities for undocumented immigrants have been a rising conversation this past year especially with the election of Phil Murphy for New Jersey Governor, whose goal is for New Jersey to become a sanctuary state. The Democrats’ argument is that sanctuary cities are safer because they encourage good relationships between illegal immigrants and law enforcement.
However, it is without debate that sanctuary cities harbor criminals and create a dangerous environment for not only other illegal immigrants who may not be violent, but a dangerous environment for Americans. We should not forget Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez. He was deported from the United States five times yet came back and murdered Katie Steinle in San Francisco, a sanctuary city. According to Neighborhood Scout, that San Francisco has one of the highest violent crime rates in the nation.
In New Jersey, Newark and East Orange are already sanctuary cities. And both have some of the highest violent crime rates in the nation according to Neighborhood Scout. Camden is another example of a sanctuary city – and yet it constantly tops lists of worst cities in the United States to live due to its high crime and homicide rates (according to Wikipedia, its violent crime rate is 6.6 times higher than the national average).
We should have open doors but only for the non-violent who want a better life in our country. Unfortunately, many criminals have used the weak immigration laws and enforcement to infect our communities. So we need balance and a reasoned approach. That means politicians on both sides of the aisle must put down their partisan spears and offer olive branches to one another. If they need a word for that, it’s “leadership.”