Logical Effect and Logical Fallacies in Donald Trump's Statements

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Recently, with the election of President Donald Trump, the immigration debate has been doused into the United States political culture. Many civilians believe that it is in the best interest of the undocumented immigrants to allow open borders, while others believe it would be more beneficial for the U.S. to increase border security (“The U.S.”). Both sides of the argument have dramatic solutions to what they think will help solve American problems and whether Republican or Democratic, there are massive extremes to both sides.Typically, left-wing individuals wish for the United States to implement open borders with easy acess to all. Right- wing individuals typically believe the government should use stricter border security to help keep America safe. In 2018, USA Today published an article entitled “Forget the Wall Already, it’s Time for the U.S. to Have Open Borders.” Throughout the article, the author, Jeffrey Miron, provides examples and evidence on why he believes the United States should permanently implement open borders. In this article, Jeffrey Miron does a poor job at ensuring the articles logical effectiveness through the use of logical fallacies and inductive reasoning.

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The excerpt had a tremendous amount of valid arguments, along with various logical fallacies. These fallacies used throughout the article impede the critical thinking process for the readers, as give the audience faulty reasonings. The author employed the slippery slope fallacy towards the beginning of the article when declaring that legalizing all forms of immigration will automatically eliminate all of the issues associated with immigration such as economic hardship, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, and immigrant violence (Miron). This statement could be considered a slippery slope fallacy due to the author forcing the audience to believe that if what he suggests will happen, an unwarranted situation will happen (Purdue). Miron also argues that the United States should allow open borders because it is too difficult to travel to America. Therefore, if the U.S. had open borders wait times while returning to America would shrink drastically. This red herring fallacy employed by the author requires a distraction from the original topic at hand and distracts the audience to focus on an irrelevant argument to induce the readers upon the authors false conclusion (MasterClass). Although the author does implement diverse logical fallacies, hasty generalization remained the most prominent one throughout the discourse. Miron exercises hasty generalization by suggesting a conclusion without justifying it with valid evidence. The author argues that if the nation allows open borders, Mexico, along with other countries, will only send their best citizens to America. The statement did not include sufficient evidence to back up such a bold claim like this one. These logical fallacies implemented by Jeffrey Miron warp the logical effectiveness in the article into improbable conclusions.

This disquisition clearly uses inductive reasoning at an attempt to prove that legalizing all immigration would halt the nations concerns regarding immigration. This form of argument conveys many accurate premises, however, the result is often debatable conclusions (Cline). Jeffrey Miron suggests many times in the excerpt that the results will “probably” happen, while showing no evidence or guarantee. Inductive arguments also often conceive failures due to cognitive bias. Because of the small sample size used to support the reasoning, inductive should never be seen as an accurate form of proof (Rouse). Whereas, deductive reasoning is typically automatically assumed true until proven otherwise.

Although the author did make some good suggestions regarding the immigration epidemic, there are more effective ways to deal with this situation. Miron debates that the only solution is open borders. Vast amounts of research proves that opening U.S. borders would actually increase these issues. Many Americans fear that if an open border policy were to take place U.S. culture would alter, jobs would be taken away, terrorism will increase, and crime will skyrocket. Although the author does claim these circumstances are unlikely to happen, Miron does not give any evidence to support his claim. Ultimately, opening United States borders could potentially be very dangerous for American citizens. Borders exist mainly for one reason, protection. Despite Jeffrey Mirons claims, Mexico is universaly known for its violent crime, drug cartels, human trafficking, and corruption (Marie). The author argues that if America implemented open borders, Mexico would only send its best citizens, however, this could not be further from the truth. This past year alone, the Department of Homeland Security has found nearly 1,200 suspects of human trafficking while attempting to travel from Mexico to America (“Human”). These criminals regulary attempt to travel to America with the high border security there is now, with open borders and no one stopping them, human trafficking will only increase. Also without the threat of deportation, illegal immigrants would no longer have much incentive to avoid criminal activities. Statistics show that illegal immigrants have lower crime rates than natives yet, if the incentive of deportation was removed these statistics would be dramatically different.

In the article Jeffrey Miron also contends that eventually, open borders would save America money. Miron includes that the American government typically spends eighteen billion each year in border control. He argues that this money spent for protection could be best used elsewhere, as well as a potential increase in the world’s gross domestic product. Yet, these claims do not account for the billions of taxpayer dollars that it will cost to take care of these immigrants. On average, illegal immigrants cost the government $116 billion and $45 in taxpayer money. Statistics suggest that if open borders were implemented, this cost would be increased five times over (Tate). Although economists claim that it would be more beneficial for the gross domestic product of the world, many individuals in America would be robbed once again by extreme taxes. There are many reasons why illegal immigrants cost american taxpayers so much money and none of the solutions are open borders. In 2019, Americans allowed for nearly half of all illegal immigrants to receive free healthcare, food stamps, and financial aid for college. As of 2018, there were forty-four million undocumented immigrants that are known in America (Jeunesse). If America were to open its borders, the number of immigrants would increase, as well as the amount of taxpayer money used to take care of them.

The article written by Jeffrey Miron had a lot of potential, however, a majority of the article involved numerous logical fallacies, poor use of inductive reasonings, and much misinformation. The fallacies used in the argument heavily impeded critical thought and created many flaws in reasoning. The use of inductive reasoning by the author was not effective of truly convincing the reader on the conclusion. There were many flaws in logic that occured in this excerpt that could have been avoided simply by understanding logical fallacies, as well as inductive and deductive reasoning.  

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