History, compassion, and illegal immigration: Keeping it real

Think for Yourself


When you describe the United States, you could describe the political system or history, but basically the United States is our home. There is one set of rules for those who live inside our home. There are responsibilities and well-defined liberties for those individuals. We provide certain services to the members of our national household like protection and education. When we think about the nation as our home, it is easy to understand a few topics that some political operatives have tried to make controversial. Your first responsibility and concern should always be your own household. You make sure your family’s needs are filled before you begin looking to the needs of other households. You don’t mind visitors and will even add new members to your household, but you don’t allow people to enter your home without your permission. This explains why so many Americans believe in “America First” and why many are concerned with illegal immigration.

I find it absurdly hypocritical that so many of the same people who complain about “American Interventionism” demand we give billions in foreign aid. Also, many individuals who live in gated communities or homes with high fences and security argue that border walls don’t work and that our borders are adequately secured. They construct barriers and hire expensive security services to protect their personal homes and then scoff at the need to do the same for our national home. I have heard individuals argue that everyone seeking asylum should be allowed to enter our nation without exception. I doubt they would feel the same about their personal homes. What if an asylum seeker was a member of a terrorist organization? Currently, there have been known terrorists crossing our border and terrible crimes have been committed by individuals who had no legal right to be in our country. This is no different than someone breaking into your home and threatening or killing your family members. People should be outraged! However, the current administration argues that if you publicly acknowledge the problem of illegal immigration, you are responsible for causing the problem. In other words, the emperor isn’t naked until you say he isn’t wearing clothes. By that logic, my bills aren’t past due until the bill collectors start demanding payment. It is their fault that they haven’t been paid, not mine. I doubt they will buy that, and I know our legal system doesn’t see it that way.

Our politicians and many in the government will make outrageous statements that if made in other situations or by other individuals would immediately be the subject of national ridicule and outrage. Unfortunately, we have individuals, organizations, and partisan media outlets who will gladly support and promote the most ridiculous and dangerous ideas. Before you begin jumping on the “let’s trash the Democrats and liberal media” bandwagon, the Republicans and their media allies do the exact same thing. Express your own thoughts. Don’t be a parrot. First, I try to look at situations in the simplest forms. Then I try to take that situation to the furthest extremes. Sometimes I believe that the extremes are so wild that they could never happen. Sometimes those extremes become the standard. Too often we develop tunnel vision. We see a desired destination, pick an obvious route, and completely ignore all the perils our chosen path will present. As my friend, Dr. Smith, has been recounting in his multi-week article about hegemony, there are a multitude of historical examples of people and governments who either did not understand or ignored the consequences of short-sighted and narrow-minded decisions. It makes me question how individuals who know and understand history could support administrations and politicians that so often ignore or misrepresent it. History is a great teacher, and compassion is a noble trait, but you must understand history’s lessons, be pragmatic with your compassion, and always think for yourself.          


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