Why oh why do you keep coming?

Haven’t we made it clear that we don’t want you here? That we would do anything to keep you away, including violating our sacred constitution? That hurting you gives our administration strength, and even a measure of joy?

Yet, still you come.

Close to 475,000 of you were caught crossing our southern border with family in the last 10 months, up 469 percent from the previous year, and triple the record for any previous year, our numbers show. How is this possible, after all we’ve done to you?

We promised we’d end this. It looks like we’ve failed, but that’s not because we are morally unglued and have no clue what we’re doing — it’s because we aren’t being tough enough. Nobody can say we’re not trying.


From the very start, our beloved president, The Chosen One, conjured you as a dark specter, invading from the south, bringing crime, disease, and economic ruin. We tell everybody you’re looking for handouts, living off the hard-earned taxes of real Americans, that you don’t want to work. Then where do we find so many of you? At work, in factories where rich men exploit you, just as our beloved president himself has done at his own businesses for years. As do all right-thinking Americans, he benefits from your toil even as he condemns you.

But still you come. Does nothing scare you away? Why are you not deterred by the sight of a father and his tiny daughter lying dead in the shallows of the Rio Grande? How can you not turn back when your children die in our care? Why do you not flinch when white supremacists, encouraged or excused by us, armed by us, want to hunt you like animals?


We tried to use your children against you, wrenching them away from you at the border. Even after we promised to stop, we kept doing it. Now we want to fix it so that we can hold you and your children indefinitely. The Obama administration tried something like this, but they lacked our guts, or our cruelty. For example, no flu shots for you.

“When they realize the borders are closing . . . the wall is being built . . . it all comes together like a beautiful puzzle,” The Chosen One said Wednesday.

Even those of you who follow the rules, who come here “the right way,” as our European ancestors did so long ago (when there were, essentially, no rules) will suffer because, frankly, we don’t really want you here, either. So we make new rules, then punish you for following them. It’s no secret that we abhor your internationally recognized right to claim asylum. So we have slowed those claims at the border, and, last week, choked them off in Boston and Newark . Also, we would like to end birthright citizenship: Yes, it is enshrined in the 14th Amendment, but the only Amendment any of us takes seriously is the Second.

We no longer want the losers who will take jobs Americans can’t or won’t do: We prefer the flush, well-educated winners who can take jobs Americans dream of. That makes total sense until you think about it. Which we don’t.


Who can stop us? We have worn down those who would defend you. Your attorneys are spent, trying to head us off in this courtroom and that. Some in our party are horrified at how we treat you but say nothing, afraid to imperil tax cuts and votes. Others relish our cruelty almost as much as we do. Good people, and bad, do nothing.

You know all of this, but still you come.

Are you dim? You must be. Because the only other explanation is that you are so desperate that you are willing to risk all of this to make lives here. That you believe in America just exactly as our perfect white ancestors did.

Rest assured, we will break that faith. We will make lives here so much more awful that you will beg to go back to the poverty, the violence, the corruption and the stunted dreams for your children that drove you here.

It’s all coming together, like a beautiful puzzle.

Globe columnist Yvonne Abraham can be reached at yvonne.abraham@globe.com and on Twitter @GlobeAbraham