President Donald J. Trump has had a sting of failures since taking office.
His initial Muslim ban, launched on a Friday afternoon with no warning, led to a ridiculous series of immigrants being turned away at U.S. Airports. Numerous protests followed.
The President and his Republican allies in Congress failed to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, despite Trump's promise to tackle the issue on his first day in office. The GOP has been promising to repeal and replace the ACA since it went into effect 7 years ago.
The President's approval ratings are in the toilet.
So he appears to be doubling-down on his efforts to vilify immigrants, painting the millions of immigrants in the U.S. as rapists and thugs.
Last week, the President's team announced plans to publish a registry of crimes committed by immigrants.
According to the Washington Post:
"Administration officials said the strategy is intended to reframe the political debate over immigration reform from what they view as a misplaced emphasis on the well-being of the nation’s estimated 11 million illegal immigrants to the negative impacts their presence can have on local communities."
President Trump brought the spouses of two Americans killed by immigrants to his address to Congress last month. He has directed the Department of Justice to highlight crimes committed by immigrants when releasing annual crime statistics.
It is easy to see what is going on.
A President who lost the popular election by 3 million votes, who is wildly unpopular with numbers at historic lows for any President and who does not know how to govern has decided to continue his virulent, hateful and dishonest characterization of immigrants as criminals.
There is a word for this.
The word is scapegoating.
Federal statistics make crystal clear the fact that immigrants commit LESS crimes than the native born. This is true even for undocumented immigrants. So the President's clarion call is a false one.
Alternative facts, one might argue.
Instead of being a leader for all Americans, Trump has decided to play to stereotypes, hatred and fear.
This has worked for politicians in the past. It may work in America in 2017 as well.
Hopefully, not. Hopefully, the President will tone down the rhetoric and recognize the amazing work that immigrants from around the world are performing every day in the United States.
From our perspective, we will be sure to scrutinize the President's actions and report on the regularly and honestly.