Study Shows that in Over 40 Years of Data there is no Link Between Immigration and Increased Crime

by Walter Einenkel –

There are numerous reasons why Trump’s and the Republican administration’s Muslim ban security policy is erroneous. But one conservative talking point for decades has always been that immigration means crime as “undesirable” people come into our country with their “undesirable” ways. If you look on any conservative news feed it is awash in horror stories of “illegal immigrants,” or “refugees” molesting women and girls, murdering people at gas stations, and the like. When Donald Trump kicked off his presidential campaign, he famously did so by calling undocumented Mexicans living in our country rapists and drug dealers. A University of Buffalo-led study has pored over decades of data and come out with very quantifiable evidence that these kinds of statements are simply false.

“Our research shows strong and stable evidence that, on average, across U.S. metropolitan areas crime and immigration are not linked,” said Robert Adelman, an associate professor of sociology at UB and the paper’s lead author. “The results show that immigration does not increase assaults and, in fact, robberies, burglaries, larceny, and murder are lower in places where immigration levels are higher.

“The results are very clear.”

When Trump made his racist and xenophobic assertions about Mexicans, Republicans stayed mum, and they did so because their constituency has been fed a steady stream of (frequently) false anecdotal evidence saying that foreign-born people in America are mostly a part of the criminal class. This is similar to the way the anti-vaccination movement has been able to stay afloat. In both cases it keeps people who are clearly concerned away from asking deeper questions that might lead to more meaningful solutions for problems like crime (solving issues of poverty) and autism (working on special needs issues while also looking into pollutants in our environment).

Adelman says the relationship between immigration and crime is complex and more research needs to be done, but this research supports other scholarly conclusions that immigrants, on the whole, have a positive effect on American social and economic life.

“It’s important to base our public policies on facts and evidence rather than ideologies and baseless claims that demonize particular segments of the U.S. population without any facts to back them up,” said Adelman.

Republicans these days seem to be allergic to facts since reality skews more and more liberal every day.


Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos