Immigration-control advocates have lots more deaths to add to their immigration-control ledger, although these deaths took place in Europe rather than the United States. According to New York Times, “As many as 650 men, women, and children” drowned when an overcrowded fishing trawler carrying illegal migrants capsized off the coast of Greece. The Times called it “one of the deadliest migrant shipwrecks in decades.”
Greek authorities have charged nine individuals who allegedly carried out the smuggling operation, just as U.S. officials do whenever there is a similar type of deadly immigration event occurring here in the United States, such as when migrants die of asphyxiation in the back of a tractor-trailer.
But of course, what immigration-control advocates, both here and abroad, are loathe to acknowledge is that it is their system of immigration controls that is responsible for these types of migrant tragedies. Given that European countries have tightened their immigration controls, just as the United States has, migrants have had to take bigger risks to escape the horrific conditions in their countries.
At the risk of belaboring the obvious, under a system of open borders, people fleeing poverty, war, tyranny, and oppression would not have to risk their lives on rickety boats operated by smugglers or in the backs of tractor-trailers operated by smugglers. Instead, they would be free to travel to other countries like normal human beings. That would mean, of course, that those hundreds of migrants who drowned near Greece would still be alive.
An interesting aspect to the tragedy was that a $175 million “superyacht” was nearby when the migrant boat capsized. The yacht immediately went to the scene and began saving immigrants by having them board the yacht. According to the New York Times, “In a few hours, the 305-foot Mayan Queen, more accustomed to pleasure boating to Monaco and Italy with billionaires and their friends aboard, was filled with 100 desperate, dehydrated and sea-soaked Pakistani, Syrian, Palestinian and Egyptian men, as it played an unexpected role in one of the deadliest migrant shipwrecks in decades.”
Good for those private yacht operators! But there is no word yet whether Greek authorities will charge them with violating Greece’s immigration-control laws by illegally transporting and harboring the migrant survivors.