Let’s look at the very recent apparent decline in new Covid-19 cases and international migration using demographic tools and a new meaning for the old Border Patrol term “EWI”.
For years the initials EWI have stood for “entered without inspection”, thus identifying an illegal alien who arrived by successfully sneaking across the border. Other illegal aliens were, and are, termed “visa abusers”, aliens who entered legally but later broke the terms of their admission.
My suggestion is that we think about those entering without an inoculation and the negative role they play in our fight against Covid-19, and that we do so within the framework of demographic concepts of growing and shrinking populations.
We may well be on the verge of another major drop in new virus cases, and the sense is that this relates to the shrinking size of the population vulnerable to the condition. The notion is that if there are fewer vulnerable people, all else being equal (a major if), then there will be fewer new incidences of the disease, and later, fewer deaths from it.
Let’s look at the factors at play here, some negative, like illegal migration into the nation, and some positive, like the ever-growing number of vaccinations. Here are the forces expanding the unvaccinated population and those decreasing it.
This vulnerable population grows through only two channels: 1) kids turning 12, and 2) the arrival of illegal aliens, almost exclusively from countries with vaccination rates lower than our own.
My estimate based on Census data is that the first group, those turning 12, is about 11,000 a day. Estimating the number of those who successfully arrive illegally daily is, of course, difficult, but it is probably in the ballpark of those “encountered” by the Border Patrol, which rose to 213,534 for the month of July, or about 7,000 a day. The two figures total 18,000 a day.
The additions, however, are completely overshadowed by the three flows out of the vulnerable population. These include something like 750,000 or more new vaccinations a day, 150,000 or so new cases of virus identified (which will give the survivors immunity later), and the 2,000 or so new deaths, to round figures quoted in the October 9 New York Times.
Let’s add these three flows up to about 900,000 a day, or about 50 times as many as the arrival of 18,000 new potential victims of the virus. I am assuming that arriving legal immigrants, as of October 1, will be fully vaccinated, and that nonimmigrants will be screened as well (though this is problematic, certainly at the southern border).
My worry, of course, is that an unenlightened (and shrinking) portion of our own population, egged on by some GOP politicians, will continue to resist mask-wearing and shots in the arm, thus causing needless deaths within a largely Republican population, though the prospects are, thanks to some federal and corporate mandates, that we will soon be seeing smaller hospitalization rates.
While saving the lives of the vaccine-shy among our countrymen will continue to be difficult, the nation has total control of those illegal aliens it captures, and aliens wanting to come to the U.S. with visas. It should make sure that, in this part of the equation, all such aliens are thoroughly vaccinated.