Eric Holder and the 'civil right' of amnesty

Attorney General Eric Holder burbles out a sticky pile of politically correct, intellectually challenged verbiage on the urgency of creating a “pathway to earned citizenship” for illegal aliens, i.e. amnesty:

Creating a pathway to earned citizenship for the 11 million unauthorized immigrants in this country is essential. The way we treat our friends and neighbors who are undocumented – by creating a mechanism for them to earn citizenship and move out of the shadows – transcends the issue of immigration status. This is a matter of civil and human rights. It is about who we are as a nation. And it goes to the core of our treasured American principle of equal opportunity.

This has been widely interpreted as Holder calling amnesty a “civil right.”  He doesn’t quite use those words, but it’s a fair interpretation of his meaning.  It’s also an alarmingly stupid thing for the Attorney General of the United States to say.  Under his reasoning, pickpockets have a “civil right” to your wallet.  

Citizenship is a valuable privilege, awarded at the discretion of – and for the benefit of – existing American citizens.  People who cross the border illegally are stealing something that legal immigrants work long and hard to obtain properly.  They live “in the shadows” for the same reason car thieves do: they have broken the law, and if detected they should be arrested and punished.

If the American people decide to throw open the borders and allow anyone to cross at will and settle on U.S. territory, that is their prerogative.  Such a decision should be made through the proper republican process: candidates would campaign on a pledge to open the border, and if the American people decided it was a wise policy, they would elect such representatives.  Open borders should not be imposed on a resisting American electorate by people like Holder, President Obama, and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano refusing to do their jobs and selectively ignoring immigration law.

On the other hand, the American people could also decide to crack down on illegal immigration, deport those who have violated our laws, and even reduce or eliminate legal immigration.  (In the wake of the Boston bombings, it certainly seems like high time to review our asylum laws, at the very least.)  All of these decisions would be perfectly acceptable and moral.  None of them would be a violation of the “civil rights” or “human rights” of illegal aliens.  Citizenship is not a prize awarded unconditionally to any invader who magically acquires a “civil right” to it by standing on American soil.

It is extremely unlikely that the American people would choose to drastically restrict legal immigration; there isn’t really even much discussion of doing so at the moment.  This is, and always has been, a nation with very generous immigration policies – the system for processing applications could use many improvements, but plenty of applications have always been accepted.  It is, however, beyond foolish to propose that every living human being on Earth has a “civil right” to American citizenship, or to speak of granting lawbreakers “equal opportunity” to the law-abiding.  It’s even more randomly foolish to assert that every resident of Mexico (or, by extension, Canada) capable of physically walking across the border has a civil right to U.S. citizenship.  Mexico certainly doesn’t see it that way.  Try illegally immigrating across their southern border, and see what happens to you.

And how dare any of those who willingly debased and thwarted American law to encourage massive illegal migrations speak about “who we are as a nation.”  The elite’s indulgence of illegal immigration is a deliberate effort to change who we are as a nation, against the will of the American people.  National identity cannot exist in any meaningful sense without borders and a strictly enforced process of legal immigration.  Among other things, this process secures the consent of the governed, which is a founding principle of the American republic, unlike the other silly nonsense Holder offered.  People who cross the border illegally and settle in the United States have not consented to our government.  Our Founders were clear that such consent is the indispensable source of just government powers.

Eric Holder is the same Attorney General who lost track of thousands of guns his department pumped across the border to Mexico, and who campaigns tirelessly against using common-sense voter identification to secure the integrity of our electoral process.  Has America ever had another “top cop” less interested in detecting or thwarting entire classes of lawbreakers?

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