Friday, May 05, 2006

Illegal immigration

It's hard to miss the loud noises made by legions of illegal immigrants and their supporters in recent weeks. But we should not mistake loud noises for the voice of rational public policy. Legitimizing illegal immigrants would be dangerous for the United States of America.

I am the offspring of immigrants who came to America from many lands. Most Americans are, of course. We are a nation of immigrants, and that has been good for America.

But, illegal immigration should not be pardoned, and it must be stopped. Let those who come to our country come under law. It doesnÂ’t matter to me that there are large rallies supporting illegal immigrants. Legalizing those who enter illegally makes a mockery of our system of laws.

Most important to me is acculturation of immigrants. Public policy that allows our nation to contain more than one dominant culture sets us on the path to national suicide. It is wonderful that people speak languages other than English, but English must be our common language. My grandparents spoke Swedish. It is my pleasure to also understand Swedish. But my grandparents' first language was English, because their parents understood the importance of becoming part of part of the fabric of this nation.

What's the answer to these problems?
  1. Deport illegal immigrants
  2. Penalize employers who pay illegal immigrants under the table
  3. Make our borders much more difficult to cross illegally
  4. Henceforth, forever deny citizenship to illegal immigrants
  5. Require reasonable proficiency in English as a condition of citizenship
Are these easy solutions? No. Are they happy solutions? No. Are they inexpensive solutions? No.

But the alternative is worse. Generations of earlier immigrants have come legally and they have become part of the tapestry of the United States. The current generation of illegal immigrants has come illegally, and many seem intent to set up their own culture with its own language in the SW United States separate from our national culture. They are stealing a part of our country. If they came armed, we would drive them out by force. Why is this any different?

If we are to be "one nation, indivisible" illegal immigration cannot continue.

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