Good Law | Bad Law #148 - Decriminalize the Border? A Conversation w/ Bill Hing

Should we decriminalize illegal crossings over our southern border?


Aaron Freiwald, Managing Partner of Freiwald Law and host of the weekly podcast, Good Law | Bad Law, is joined by Bill Hing, a professor of law and migration studies at the University of San Francisco and the founder of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC), to discuss immigration and decriminalization of the border.


In today’s episode, Aaron and Bill attempt to make sense of what is happening at our border, discuss the responses of past administrations to deportation and pressures at the southern border, and try to get to the true statistics surrounding immigration and what those numbers might really mean. Having recently visited and inspected migrant detention centers where children have been separated from their families, Bill relives his own heart-wrenching account of the conditions there. Bill and Aaron discuss DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), Trump’s “zero tolerance policy” and rhetoric, the Flores decision, and more. How accurate are the numbers we’re hearing?


What are the federal criminal laws currently on the books?  How have these laws led to the Trump Administration’s policy of separating children from their families?  What would be the impact of Texas Rep. Julian Castro’s proposal to decriminalize “improper entry” across the border?


The Director of the Immigration and Deportation Defense Clinic and the Dean’s Circle Scholar at USF, Bill continues to pursue social justice through community work, litigation, and scholarship. Bill is the founder of the ILRC, a group that works with and helps educate immigrants, community organizations and the legal sector to continue to build a democratic society that values diversity and the rights of all people.


An interesting and critical conversation, Aaron and Bill address the human rights concerns as well as the constitutional concerns regarding the border, detainment and family separations. This is an episode you won’t want to miss. Listen now and let us know what you think!


To learn more about Professor Hing, please visit the USF website here.

To learn more about the Immigrant Legal Resource Center please visit their website here.

To read the Flores settlement agreement, please click here.


Host: Aaron Freiwald

Guest: Bill Hing