Tuesday, February 18, 2014

An Alternative To Amnesty

An Alternative To Amnesty

Before I built a wall I'd ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offence.

And he likes having thought of it so well
He says again, "Good fences make good neighbors."
-- Robert FrostMending Walls

Almost four years ago come this June, I proposed an alternative to Amnesty for Illegal Immigrants.  To the best of my knowledge and beliefs, nobody heeded me then.  I doubt if anybody would listen to me now or ever.  Ergo, it behooves revisiting for emphasis and clarity of recollection both the gist and premises of the arguments [proof edited]:
“. . . the influx of illegal aliens in the southern border is undermining the very concept of our national sovereignty. The wall has to be mended before any meaningful talk of any kind of immigration reform, comprehensive or otherwise, makes any sense. In answer to [one of] Robert Frost’s questions {What I was walling in or walling out,} mending the wall would be walling out intruders who do not respect our laws simultaneously as it would be walling in our self-perception as a nation of laws.” [Read more: p.243 op.cit.]

It really matters less that nobody is listening.  The message still has to be trumpeted through the four corners of the earth because it is wrong not to.  When you bother to have laws, you must find a mechanism to enforce them.  When somebody breaks the law, that body has to answer for the crime of law-breaking.  Anything short of this makes a mockery of our self-image as a nation of laws.  When it involves trespassing across our territorial borders, it makes a lie of the notion that we are a sovereign nation.

If there ever were a shovel-ready project chuck-full of economic stimuli, this could have been it, in all its grotesque Obamist splendor of “. . . meaning planning is complete, approvals are secured and people could be put to work right away once funding is in place.”   This could have been worth all the contortionist spin accrued Solyndra and the thirty-two other kindred Green Energy ventures lucky enough to get loan guarantees from the $800-billion stimulus package and promptly folded shortly after the bounty was in.  The political commitment to do it was the main missing ingredient.

The mechanics of implementation could have been as straightforward, prima facie, as arranging for a community picnic on a July 4th weekend.  Or better yet, to leverage the advantage inherent to the February cold climate, we could schedule a round-up for the Presidents’ Day weekend.  There are three essential components to the operation: (1) rounding them up; (2) shipping them off; and (3) keeping them out.

The enumeration does not imply order of importance.  The qualifier “prima facie” is necessary because when an operation involves people and their sensibilities, nothing is ever simple and straightforward.  It behooves to count the ways that complications can arise.

1.   Rounding them up ~~ any dragnet-like operation always runs the risk that some target entities may be filtered through the sieve.  Moreover, people acquire varying degrees of adaptability.  Some people readily grow roots and support network within any community faster than managed by certain others.  The common denominator however is documentation on how and when did you commence being in your present circumstances.

2.   Shipping them off ~~ at first blush this appears to be straightforward.  It seems to only require deploying enough long-distance buses of the Greyhound or Trailways and kindred variety to transport the rounded up people to a designated destination.  The designation of a proper destination can be tricky.  Since the people may not possess any kind of documentation, how does one determine where to ship them to?

This is an aspect of the problem I had recognized and warned of in the earlier publication.  {See, e.g., p. 243 ff op.cit. print or electronic, wherein page numbers don’t apply.}
“Suppose, by a miracle of miracles, the country finally develops the political will to enforce the law and the spine to round up all those undocumented individuals and transport them to the Mexican border. What happens then if the Mexican authorities simply disown them? In the absence of evidence that they belong to any other country, the U.S. would be stuck with the bodies of living human beings.
 “It would be a de facto reverse writ of habeas corpus, i.e., “you have the bodies, they are your problems.” Shall we have the moral courage and justification to just unload the people at the border? I hazard to guess that we do not. We have a long tradition of being a compassionate people. We shall have ended licking at the flat end of the immigration lollipop.”
3.   Keeping them out~~ As I had extensively argued and demonstrated on pp. 237 ff, chapter 16, “Incidental Lessons in Fluid Mechanics,” of the earlier cited book, keeping the border less porous and permeable than exists now is as basic as plugging a leak in the dike.  The logic is so elementary.  The context is so conventional.  It is quite a marvel that the policy-making crowd had not picked up on to make it the operative wisdom for governance.

There are mesanthropes, skeptics and cynics who opine that making the border more impregnable would effectively be tantamount to the East Berlinization of America.  Nothing can be farther from the truth.  East Germany was walled off because had they left everybody free to travel, all those who had the wherewithal would have departed for the western sector.
Of the three components, if priority were to be assigned, mending the wall should be deemed more important.  A mop up operation is an exercise in futility if the supply is not curtailed at the source.

All three should be construed as mutually reinforcing their effectiveness.  Ergo they could conceivably be most beneficial if all three are synchronized when implemented in a virtually concurrent manner.

The point that should not need any emphasis at all is that playing fast and loose with the law requires that you own up the consequences.  Issuing waivers as the wont of the Obama Regime is the hallmark of tyranny.

Only when you claim to be above the law would you sanction selective enforcement thereof.  Our forebears invested precious sweat, blood and tears to get the Constitution written and adopted.  The least we can do is to abide by its letter and spirit.  We require the same of anybody who happens into our borders, by any reason or happenstance, whatsoever.

1 comment:

  1. Some may strike you as old and recycled notions but a conversation on immigration is something we need to have else we may not survive as the nation as we knew it.