Some crimes, like the Parkland massacre in Florida, earn the outraged attention of The New York Times, which is fitting. But when Trump wages a rhetorical war on the murderous immigrant gang MS-13 who bludgeon teens to death, the paper responds with hand-wringing explainers, like Friday’s front-page corrective suggesting the threat is overblown and unrelated to Obama’s negligent immigration policy: “A Gang’s Fearsome Reputation, Further Inflated by the President.”
Here was the video caption: “President Trump has used MS-13 to justify hard-line immigration policies. But the gang he’s trying to root out was born in the United States.” The clip slides over the fact that it was born in outgrowth from fights with Mexican gangs here, and that deported gang members often return to commit more mayhem:
Few dispute the violent menace that MS-13 is to pockets across the United States. Its members wield machetes, kill with abandon and terrorize -- for the most part in immigrant communities.
But law enforcement officials at local, state and federal levels describe the Trump administration’s hard-charging campaign against MS-13 as out of proportion with the threat.
President Trump has seized on the gang’s brutality and violence to symbolize the risks of illegal immigration.
The reporters unloaded some strangely benign-sounding sentences about MS-13:
Not all members of MS-13, or Mara Salvatrucha, are illegal immigrants. Nor does the gang survive on the global trafficking of drugs, guns or people.
Who do these people think they are? Joy Reid? Anywya, here's more minimization of the threat, found “predominantly in just three metropolitan areas..."
In his State of the Union speech in January, Mr. Trump said MS-13 members exploited immigration laws to move to Long Island and, ultimately, kill Kayla Cuevas, 16, and Nisa Mickens, 15. The girls were beaten with bats and sliced by machetes in a cul-de-sac near an elementary school parking lot in September 2016.
MS-13 operates in loose local cliques, sowing fear and violence. It is not a sophisticated global drug cartel, and many gang members are destitute.
Those poor “destitute” killers include those “receiving just enough money to get by.” Sob.
The paper found anonymous sources to fault Trump’s focus; then a brief citation of the link between illegal immigration and crime:
A two-year uptick in violent activity converged with the arrival of more than 4,700 school-age minors in Suffolk County since 2013....
Last March, federal authorities charged 13 young adults -- including four accused of involvement in the killings of Kayla Cuevas and Nisa Mickens -- linked to MS-13 with racketeering and other crimes in Suffolk County. Of the 13, 10 were unauthorized immigrants, federal prosecutors said. Seven had come to the country as unaccompanied minors.
Some law enforcement officials privately fear that the Trump administration’s push to eradicate crime by deporting illegal immigrants could backfire.
The Times played the race card at the end even after admitting that “MS-13’s victims are overwhelmingly immigrants themselves.”
“The administration is using MS-13 in Willy Horton-esque campaign ads and as cover to make a boogeyman out of immigration,” said Kevin de León, a California state senator. “It is using MS-13 as a pretext to go after hardworking immigrants.”
Over at The Daily Signal, they outlined how the Obama administration’s encouragement of illegal immigration of unaccompanied minors helped reinvigorate the group.