Canadians manning the border to keep out American illegals

I’ve been beating this dead horse for years, but it’s good to see that somebody is finally listening. Something must be done about the flood of illegal aliens crossing the border without permission. And now some of the good people of Canada are finally stepping up and taking charge. They’re keeping watch for American illegal aliens trying to sneak into the Great White North, and when they spot some they’re reporting them to the Mounties or, in some cases, directly intervening themselves.

This situation wound up impacting Karen Schwartz, a woman with dual Canadian-American citizenship and an elderly father in Calgary, Canada. She was preparing to travel up there to care for him when a friend warned her that Canadians were spotting cars with U.S. plates on their side of the border and either reporting them or vandalizing the cars. (NY Times)

“The Canadians are actually doing damage to vehicles with United States plates on them,” he cautioned, giving me my first inkling that it wasn’t just public health officials who were serious about keeping Americans out of Canada, where the death rate from the coronavirus has been roughly half that of its southern neighbor.

As a dual citizen I was entitled to cross the border, closed to most Americans because of the pandemic. With an octogenarian father in Calgary who had been largely isolated during the stay-at-home orders, I was willing to submit to Canada’s mandatory two-week quarantine in order to visit.

But my friend’s warning proved prescient. Some concerned residents who fear that the virus will be spread to their communities have been taking matters into their own hands, spurring so many reports of intimidation that the premier of British Columbia, John Horgan, reminded angry Canadians to “Be Calm. Be Kind” at a July 27 news conference.

Some of the Canadians living near the border have done more than simply report the perceived trespassers to the authorities. There have been multiple reported incidents of harassment, including cars being vandalized, random rude gestures, and at least one report of a (minor) physical assault.

The problem here is that not all of the cars with American plates are being driven by Americans who are in the country illegally. In fact, most of them aren’t. Canada has closed its border to nonessential traffic, but there are exceptions made for people who work there in essential businesses, have relatives living in the country or those driving through to Alaska. And as the linked report indicates, many Canadian citizens have cars with American plates if they have jobs that take them to our country regularly. So the people being harassed and damaged aren’t even illegal aliens in most cases.

But there have been some of those incidents as well. Some Americans have been discovered sneaking into Banff National Park located in Alberta. Ten of our citizens were fined $1,200 each and deported after they were discovered in the park illegally.

Should we be upset about this? Not at all. If we’re going to insist on secure borders and enforcement of our immigration laws (as we must) and we want Mexico to take responsibility for helping to keep its citizens on their side of the border, we should expect no less of our own people. Throw the book at them as far as I’m concerned. What’s good for the goose, etc.

Of course, that message isn’t really being driven home by John Horgan, the premier of British Columbia. In a recent news conference, he “suggested” that those with U.S. plates on their cars perhaps take public transit. Or that they get their plates changed. Or, failing that, perhaps they could ride a bike. Way to crack the whip there, John. That should teach us a lesson.

Ed Morrissey Jan 28, 2022 8:31 AM ET