[This is the transcript of my regular KVMR commentary broadcast on 1 February 2013.]
We’ve known for years that no one will deport the 11+Million illegal aliens now living in the United States. And everyone also knows, whether they say it or not, that ultimately the overwhelming fraction of these people will stay here permanently, and one way or another become Americans. That part about how many actually become Americans is the big rub in getting immigration reform legislation passed.
The contending sides here are the usual suspects, and as a conservetarian, I count myself in one of the corners. We all know how America has always benefitted from immigration, and why we continue to attract and invite immigrants. But here I’m referring to those who today are our legal immigrants, and not the illegal alien population that has long been the sticking part of immigration reform.
The word ‘immigrant’, as in the politically correct ‘illegal immigrant’ or ‘undocumented immigrant’, has come to stifle reasoned debate on the subject. For example, in reporting on Mexicans living in the US, the prestigious Pew Research Hispanic Center does not distinguish the legals from the illegals, calling the entire cohort simply immigrants. In its charts and graphs showing Mexican influx, this charade wrongly assigns all Mexicans coming to America as having climbed over the fence. In Pew’s lexicon, there are no Mexican illegal aliens here, even though they show hundreds of thousands of illegal Mexicans arriving yearly that now tally to over 11M “immigrants”. These apparently add to the 52M legal Hispanic Americans of whom two out of three are of Mexican origin. For some reason the published numbers on Hispanics are kept very murky, and the labels very confusing.
The Right would have none of that, and continues to argue for the survival of a sovereign, strong, and exceptional America based on its Constitution and founding principles as they see them. They view the process of legal immigration as a necessary and supportive part of our country’s future. And overall, they would embrace the provisions being currently outlined in Congress for assigning the 11M illegal aliens onto various tracks to legal residency and eventual citizenship. But the Right wants to do that as part of a sustainable resolution to our illegal alien problem, and not just as the next amnesty program to generate Democrats.
Here a moment’s thought reveals the high hard one in the upcoming debate on immigration reform – for a long term solution, we need to cut the influx of illegal aliens to a trickle, given the pressures that any new reform that provides permanent residency will bring to bear on our borders. So the short answer is to first secure the 2,000 mile border that we share with Mexico. Even though our faltering economy has reduced current illegal alien influx, our border remains porous and will be an easy conduit for more illegals, drugs, terrorists, etc in the coming years, especially as the US economy improves and the Mexican economy continues to struggle.
Here the bottom line is that none of this immigration reform will work or even pass if we can expect an additional 5 million illegal aliens to be in the country a few years from now. Then today’s reform becomes nothing but the next in a never ending sequence of amnesty programs continuing the mockery that already is our immigration policy and process.
So the correct and sustainable solution to immigration reform starts with securing the border. After having achieved that, we can implement all the other provisions that invite the then stabilized 11M illegal aliens to become legal residents, and ultimately join us as fellow Americans.
My name is Rebane, and I expand on this and related themes on georgerebane.com where the linked transcript of this commentary is posted, and where such issues are debated extensively. However these views are not necessarily shared by KVMR. Thank you for listening.