Turn to the Founding Fathers to solve immigration problem
© by Barbara Anderson


The Salem News
Thursday, May 30, 2013


 

ďGive me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.Ē

ó Emma Lazarus, inscribed on the Statue of Liberty

If we want to intelligently discuss the immigration issue, itís important to start at the beginning, and keep it simple.

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earthÖ. and eventually Adam and Eve were told to go forth and populate the latter. Their descendants made such a mess of the first populated lands that eventually a bunch of them decided to move to a continent that had not yet been populated with idiots who were always fighting wars over territory, religion and whatever, making most people tired, poor and generally wretched.

If you prefer, leave out Adam and Eve and start with hominid ancestors who evolved into human beings, the results are the same.

The Hispanics who settled South and Central America and Mexico took bad Old World habits with them, set up a kind of caste system, and created mostly poor and generally wretched populations. The other Europeans who settled the United States and Canada brought with them a few non-idiotic concepts from Mesopotomia, Greece, Rome and England.

Our country had very wise Founding Fathers who created a constitution with a Bill of Rights, and the new nation thrived. People who emigrated to it either had the same values or quickly picked them up, melting together into the land of the free and the home of the brave.

The Lazarus inscription on the Statue of Liberty is just a poem, not a part of the Constitution. In fact, the statue itself wasnít intended for immigrants; it was a gift from the people of France to celebrate American independence, which inspired their own revolution.

 

That became Americaís world-value: to inspire other countries to become like us. It worked for France so we donít get too many tired, poor and wretched French immigrants. Other European countries also eventually made themselves more bearable to live in, even Germany after a strong America defeated it. Some countries in Asia, Africa and South America have adopted variations of our capitalist economic system, set up democracies, advanced their own freedom.

We can get all teary-eyed at the idea of tired, poor freedom-seekers making their way here, associating them with our own immigrant ancestors, but seriously: all our ancestors found when they arrived was a lifted lamp to light the way to opportunity. No one handed them welfare cards and encouraged their dependence on the hard-working Americans who were here before them.

Even though much of the planet has more freedom than it had when the United States began, there are still plenty of dictators, wars, even genocide that any rational person would want to escape. Since God forgot to tell Adam and Eve to stop reproducing when the shores started teeming, some places are simply overcrowded, with more people than the land can support.

Here is the bottom line: There are millions of good people who would be better off in America but, logistically, they canít all come here to live without making it as crowded as the places they left, or come here for benefits without eventually making our government oppressive like the ones they escaped.

We canít take in everyone, so we need an immigration policy with criteria. Iíd like to see us welcome those who have the original American spirit of independence; we could make room for them by asking those who donít have this spirit to leave. Americans who would prefer to live in a free country with a socialist bent could move to France, and we could take up a collection to send the French people a nice statue to show our gratitude.

Instead of building, or continuing to pretend weíll build, a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, we should do two things: abolish our welfare state, returning to our founding principles, and then ask the northern Mexican states to hold a referendum on annexing themselves to our libertarian Southwest. Weíll see if Republican fears that Hispanics will always vote Democrat are valid when the Democrats have nothing to give them but opportunity.

We need immigrants who want to join the original American Dream: not the tired and the poor, but the energetic, the potential wealth-producers, the freedom-lovers. Until we can sort them out of the huddled masses that canít all fit into our 50 states, immigration should be put on hold except for those who are already legally en route.

Rep. John Barrow (D-Ga.) has introduced a new bill that focuses on full ďoperational control of the entire border.Ē It requires E-Verify for all employers, increases and empowers ICE agents (returning veterans?), and increases the number of judges, clerks and prosecutors to process immigration violators. This bill should be substituted for the 867 pages of complicated alleged reform that is now in the U.S. Senate.

Border security first. Then, the 2014 election, in which we must try to re-create an America that isnít slowly beginning to resemble the places immigrants have always wanted to leave. Letís lift the lamp of opportunity for all present and potential Americans again.


The comments made and opinions expressed in her columns are those of Barbara Anderson
and do not necessarily reflect those of Citizens for Limited Taxation.


Barbara Anderson is executive director of Citizens for Limited Taxation. Her column appears weekly in the Salem News and other Eagle Tribune newspapers; bi-weekly in the Tinytown Gazette.


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