The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

Bussing Migrants is Inhumane

Mayla Montgomery
For months, Gov. Greg Abbott has been sending buses of migrants arriving at the Texas border to a myriad of other cities in the United States in an apparent attempt to criticize Biden’s immigration and border policies. While border towns in Texas are struggling to handle the influx of migrants, Abbott’s lack of coordination with the cities the buses are going to has only served to cause chaos. Abbott is using the lives of these asylum seekers as pawns in his political game, with no regard for their wellbeing or future.

Throughout Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s time in office, his stance on immigration has proved to be a divisive issue. More recently, Abbott’s high-profile campaign sending migrants to Democratic cities he describes as “sanctuaries” has been landing him in hot water with his Democratic detractors, and deservedly so. Abbott’s senseless and unorganized approach to Texas’ migrant crisis has only served to worsen the root problem, actively using the asylum seekers in question to benefit his own agenda.    

For months, Abbott has been sending buses of migrants arriving at the Texas border to a myriad of other cities in the United States, most notably Chicago and New York City. Since 2022, Abbott has regularly bussed over 80,000 migrants to Democrat-led cities nationwide. While Abbott claims this practice began from a point of total desperation, the cities on the receiving end of these buses say that there has been no communication or coordination. 

This only goes to show that Abbott doesn’t have these migrants’ best interests in mind. As much as he claims this policy is to help asylum seekers find shelter or to take pressure off of Texas cities along the border, it’s just petty. Abbott clearly disagrees with President Biden’s handling of immigration and his policies around border control, and to illustrate this point he’s sowing destructive seeds of chaos. 

Abbott is correct in that Texas shouldn’t be the only one handling migration and asylum seekers as border towns in Texas are also reaching capacity, and struggling to adequately deal with the influx of migrants. However, the way that he’s chosen to handle the issue proves that he isn’t interested in trying to solve the root problem. His lack of communication and coordination with receiving cities like New York and Chicago is only causing more problems for the migrants as these cities on the receiving end of the buses are also at their capacity. With harsh winters closing in on northern cities, they simply aren’t able to safely accommodate the influx of migrants arriving on these buses. Washington DC’s housing is at capacity, and Denver has declared a state of emergency. Abbott is toying with the lives and well-being of these innocent people just to try and prove a point to his opponents. It’s immoral and cruel. 

Abbott’s policies are not only detrimental to the cities they affect, it’s also detrimental to the migrants. The asylum seekers on these buses are being extremely mistreated. The conditions on the bus are truly deplorable, with migrants not receiving food or drinks on bus rides lasting more than a day, or being dropped off in the middle of the night. There’s even a case of a child dying on one of the buses en route to Illinois. It goes without saying how abhorrent that is. Abbott is using these people as pawns in his political game, and the buses as a cruel PR stunt. 

In December of 2023, Abbott signed Senate Bill 4(SB 4). The bill has effectively made illegal immigration a state crime and gives Texas law enforcement the authority to arrest anyone they suspect may have crossed the border illegally. The bill also permits judges to drop the case if the defendant agrees to return to Mexico. SB 4 is set to take effect in March of this year. Additionally, Senate Bill 3(SB 3), which has provided over $1 billion to create barriers along the border, has created many more obstacles, including increased scrutiny around the border and an imminent threat of deportation for people attempting to cross the border in yet another effort to make a statement criticizing Biden’s immigration policies.

In a recent attempt to curb the flow of asylum seekers to New York City, Mayor Eric Adams has filed a lawsuit against 17 of the charter bus companies that have been transporting migrants from Texas. The lawsuit seeks $708 million in damages to help financially support the migrants who have arrived in the city since 2022. In a statement on January 4, 2024, Abbott dismissed the lawsuit, calling it “baseless” and maintaining that the migrants traveled “voluntarily.”

Not only do these bills threaten the safety of migrants, but they’re dangerously close to being unconstitutional. Following SB 4’s approval, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a federal lawsuit against the bill. The federal prosecutors argue that the bill infringes upon the federal government’s right to regulate immigration. Immigration is a federal issue, and the negative effects that SB4 will have on asylum seekers will only harm these families who are just seeking a better life.  

Ultimately, Abbott’s actions do not come from any place of goodwill and he isn’t truly trying to solve the migrant crisis. What he’s doing is attempting to “own” his liberal opponents with a sick scheme that is doing far more harm than good. It’s up to the federal government to help put an end to this mistreatment and help everyone work towards a solution that benefits asylum seekers.

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About the Contributor
Mayla Montgomery, Reporter
Class of 2026
I have always had a passion for writing and telling stories, and I am so excited to be working on press this year! When I’m not writing, I love watching my favorite shows, watching all the horror movies in existence, reading books, listening to music, and spending time with my friends and family.

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