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What exactly is the current border crisis? My colleague Adam Serwer asks: “Is it the recent surge of migrants, or is it the treatment of those migrants in detention facilities?” The answer may depend on your partisan alignment.
This spring’s rise in crossings is being greeted with familiar political sniping that, when mixed with frantic media coverage, is obscuring the true nature of the situation: The problems at the border are more complex than the distorted optics of the moment suggest, two staff writers remind us.
America suffers from immigration amnesia. Experts consider this type of rise in cases cyclical, Caitlin Dickerson reports. “Moments at the border like this should by now be considered almost routine, but our collective short-term memory—sometimes exacerbated by media hyperbole—allows elected officials to capitalize on them for their own political gain.”
The real crisis goes far deeper. “To the extent that the United States has a border crisis, it is an enduring one: the mistreatment of human beings in American custody,” Adam argues.