STEPS TO IMMIGRATION REFORM
An interesting exchange started on the EC blog but has not yet been concluded in my view. Thus this blog.
I challenged Duane Graham to state the immigration reforms that he SUPPORTED and not just throw barbs at what the GOP was doing or trying to achieve. He responded in a blog found at http://duanegraham.wordpress.com/2014/07/06/christians-beware-a-10-point-plan-on-immigration-reform/. Surprisingly, to me, I found that we were not all that far apart, fundamentally. However the dialog stopped at that point with no further comments from Graham or his supporters. To understand the nuances in this blog, I suggest you read the linked blog and comments thereto first.
We in America have both a National Security issue and a humanitarian situation on our southern border. Graham and I agree, substantially, on that point. But the kicker is that he agrees that we must have better control of our southern border today. However how to achieve that goal he suggests be left to “experts” which neither of us happen to be, “experts” on controlling who enters America across our southern border. But I believe it does not take an “expert” to envision such border control. Countries have been doing it for millennia, humanely in most cases.
Anyone entering any country should do so in accordance with the “rules”, the law if you will, stating specifically who can enter any country. Certainly such laws can be very unfair, biased, prejudicial, etc. For example a law could state requirements in terms of ethnicity, skin color, political or social orientation, etc. Or instead the laws can allow essentially anyone to enter a country, an open border if you will. Or of course there is a set of laws that find a “middle ground” if you will as to who might be allowed to cross a border, legally.
Basically, our current laws require anyone legally crossing the border, any border defining the boundaries of the United States of America, to obtain “permission” before crossing that border. That usually is in the form of a visa, advanced permission for anyone to enter the USA. What’s wrong with that requirement, a requirement established by almost all countries in the world?
OK, there are special cases, refugees if you will, those seeking political asylum because their country of origin is too “harsh”, unfair, etc. We have laws that define the requirements to be accepted into the USA without a pre-approved visa, for those fleeing oppression. Show up at a border without prior permission, apply for asylum and then enter the USA once your application for asylum is approved. What’s wrong with that approach?
In fact we take it a step farther for those seeking asylum. Generally speaking such asylum seekers are allowed to enter America but are “contained” while their application for asylum is processed through our courts, a legal process to validate the need, on a case by case or individual basis, for asylum. We are supposed to detain such asylum seekers, according to law.
The real and immediate crux of the matter today however is we do not follow those proscribed laws, have a legal visa to enter America or apply for asylum, legally, when crossing the border. Instead our long and very porous southern border is flooded with people trying to enter America illegally.
So is not the first step in that process to “secure our southern borders” to only allow people to enter America legally, by some legal definition other than just “showing up and looking for a better job”, etc.?
Other that just opening our borders to anyone, criminals, terrorists, people looking for a free ride at tax payer expense in America, etc. we must have some criteria or definitions that anyone must meet, before entering America, should we not? We have those laws on the books already, but now fail, miserably to enforce them. People from foreign lands now believe that if they can just “make it across the border” they will be allowed to remain in America as long as they want to so remain. Thus we see the current flood of illegal immigration by kids, adults, terrorists, criminals, malcontents of all sorts, some intending to cause great harm to America if they can just “get in”.
We have two big problems right now in America, both caused by a very porous southern border, I submit. What do we do with the vast number that are already here, illegally and remain here, illegally is the first problem, with more arriving at our southern border each day? Second how do we allow more legal immigrants into America, today?
I submit we cannot fix either problem, what to do with those already here or how to open our borders, legally, to more immigrants, until we secure our southern border, humanly, but at the same time stop those trying to cross the border illegally in a continuing flood.
We already do a good job of border control for those arriving by air or sea, the normal means of transportation into America for most immigrants. What we have thus far failed to do is control the land routes into America from the south. Any “expert” would say that we must “funnel” immigrants through control points on land routes, just as we do for airplanes and ships arriving in America. So why not do exactly that, funnel all immigrants crossing our southern borders through legal control points for entry into America?
The real reason many illegal immigrants now attempt to enter America, illegally, is they fully expect that after all is said and done they will be allowed to remain here and go free IMMEDIATELY after crossing our border, illegally. They want no control, no check points, no visas, no applications for asylum to be considered by courts of law. They simply want to go free in America, to do as they so choose to do like any other American citizen. As well, once they are here illegally and are “caught” breaking American law they demand the full privileges of any American citizen under our laws. They even would demand full legal representation at American taxpayer expense to argue their cases in courts even though they have no legal right to be here in the first place.
Can we effectively control access across our southern borders today? Yes we can I assert as a “non-expert” and I further believe we can do so humanly, at some considerable expense to American taxpayers. As well we need not have court cases so backlogged that it takes years to settle a single case in such jammed packed courts of law. After we bear the expense of regaining entry control of our southern border, we can and should devote the legal resources to moving immigration cases through such courts rapidly, fairly and of course legally, under IMMIGRATION LAW, not laws afforded to others in America legally in the first place.
If a ship at sea endures flooding, the first priority is to stop the flow of water into the ship. That is the emergency, stop the flooding. Fail to do so and ships sink, at sea or inport. After the flooding stops then other more careful efforts are then made to restore the ship (of State) to normal conditions under laws and regulations controlling the operation of any ship (of State).