November 13, 2012
There are people who believe that illegal immigrants working in the U.S. should be offered a chance to apply for legal status. Does this make sense to you? What of those who have done it right and sought citizenship according to the law? I have friendship with two excellent young men from the former Soviet Bloc who did just that. Each of them sought for years to enter the high privilege (not the “right”) of citizenship of this Union.
These men are highly intelligent, moral, productive, and contributed much to the city and society in which they lived. Yet, our immigration system put up obstacles at every turn. One finally made it after eight years or so of consistent effort. The other finally gave up in discouragement, after ten years – that’s 10! – and moved to Vancouver, Canada. He is now a citizen of that nation. Yet, people can just break in, flout the law (because they know there will be no consequence or enforcement), and gain a path to what is withheld from people who do it right?
How does that make sense?
How is that just? You know what will happen. Illegal immigration will skyrocket when it becomes clear that doing so is the quickest the way to become a citizen. While “offering a path to citizenship” sounds like a response of compassion, how does it express justice and true integrity to all the current citizens and to those who, because of their appreciation and respect for the rule of law, try to do it legally?
What would you do if you came home from a vacation and found a family had broken into your house, were set up in three or four of your rooms, had been using the shower and eaten food from your refrigerator? Sure, they had mowed the lawn, which is a job you admittedly don’t enjoy doing. (But that also meant the neighborhood kid you had hired for the job had not been able to earn the money.)
How would you feel if they had upgraded your cable TV plan, charging it to your account? How would you feel if they were driving your cars around town? What if, when you issued a strong suggestion that they depart the premises, they told you they had a right to your things, and demanded that you stop discriminating against them? (Other than these things, the home invaders are nice and friendly, and seem to have good family values.)
If you can tell me that you’d sit down with them and kindly help them work out a path to legally becoming a part of your household for the rest of your lives, letting them live with you until the legalities are worked out, then I will conclude that you truly have the courage of conviction on this issue.
This is a “nice and compassionate” but incredibly naive and misguided idea. If we follow it, and give those who are guilty of breaking and entering a path to citizenship, having obtained that privilege by ignoring the laws of the very country they say they want to join, at the least – the very least – they go to the rear of the line. They can wait their turn behind those who have been trying for years to enter legitimately by respectfully ringing the doorbell.
Still, you will telegraph to the whole world: “Go ahead and commit ‘forced entry’. We’ll reward you. We have no respect for our own laws, so we can surely understand why you don’t”.
In trying to be just, in reality you perpetuate a severe injustice.
What do you think? Would you settle the people in your home? Why not? Why is that any different from national policy?