By Barbara De La Hoya
GOP members are quick to call for mass shootings and other crimes to not be politicized and to give privacy to the victims and their mourning families. But all bets are off the table when Republicans seek to gain public favor or sway votes.
On July 18, 20-year-old Mollie Tibbetts went out for a run while she was dog sitting, according to NBC News. She never returned and her body was found almost a month after she was reported missing in Brooklyn, Iowa.
Her alleged murderer, Cristhian Rivera, an undocumented immigrant, was charged with first-degree murder, according to CNN. National Republican leaders wasted no time in politicizing Tibbetts’ murder and denouncing the nation’s immigration laws.
Rivera worked at Yarrabee Farms for the past four years, according to CNN. The company is partly owned by Craig Lang, a prominent Iowa Republican who ran for Iowa secretary of agriculture this year. Rivera used a state ID and social security card to apply for the job. However, those forms of ID were not Rivera’s.
GOP members are using the tragedy of one young woman whose family denounced the idea of her death being used for political gain.
On Aug. 21 in West Virginia, President Donald Trump called for Republicans to stop the disgrace that are the current immigration laws in this country. Donald Trump Jr. described Tibbett’s death as the left’s love for open borders. “The radical policies of the Democrats have left a trail of human wreckage in pursuit of their open borders,” he said, according to nytimes.com.
In a joint statement on Tibbetts, GOP Iowa Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst, said, “Too many Iowans have been lost at the hands of criminals who broke our immigration laws,” according to nbcnews.com.
Republican lawmakers don’t want undocumented immigrants in our country, but are willing to hire them for less pay with virtually no voice or representation to work on their farms.
The chance of a better life without fear of gang violence, corruption or persecution is what brings most immigrants to America. Immigrants take low-paying hard-labor jobs to survive – jobs that the average American is not willing to perform for the pay.
According to NPR, a 2015 study conducted by the Cato Institute found that criminal conviction and arrest rates in Texas for undocumented immigrants were lower than those of native-born Americans for murder, sexual assault and larceny. Native citizens were convicted of more than 40 0,000 crimes, undocumented immigrants were convicted of over 15,000 crimes and documented immigrants were convicted of nearly 18,000 crimes.
There were 1,797 criminal convictions for every 100,000 natives compared to 899 convictions for every 100,000 undocumented immigrants.
Rivera does not represent all undocumented immigrants. Unfortunately, Tibbetts’ death will continue to be used until the next news cycle can find another victim.