Monday, May 30, 2011

CAUTION: Dirty Words Ahead

ICE raids McDonald's Restaurants in Reno in 2007.  Protesters march.

There are a couple of vulgar words in the politically correct lexicon of the elites among us.  They are “Deportation” and “Assimilation.”  Both are key to understanding and correcting immigration policy. 

For example, the left (in cooperation with the media) will quickly remind you that being in the United States illegally is not a felony; it isn’t even a crime, they say.  It is an “infraction” or a “civil violation,” they say.  Splitting legal hairs here, it is a crime to be caught crossing the border, but once in the interior one can only be charged with a “civil violation.”  I like to call it Immaculate Presence.

So, as the argument goes, unlawful presence in the United States is something like a speeding ticket or parking in a red zone.  It is against the law, but really no big deal.

But the very same laws that explain unlawful presence as being a civil violation, spell out the remedy (or punishment) for being caught here without valid documents.  That remedy is “removal,” aka deportation.

But deportation is such a vulgar word.  It conjures up images of people in handcuffs boarding buses or airplanes.  La Raza decries it for separating families and implies a state akin to Nazi Germany and the Gestapo.  Of course, Hitler was removing German citizens, but that’s a minor detail we are obliged to ignore.

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We need to get beyond the notion that deportation is cruel and unusual punishment.  It isn’t.  It is nothing more than returning someone to their home country.  And the United States is extremely humane in the process.  Efforts are made to make sure children are not stranded here.  The deportee is not simply dumped across the border, but safety flown to an airport close to their home.

This painting of deportation as inhumane is a recent development.  One would be hard-pressed to label Rev. Theodore Hesburgh or Barbara Jordan rightwing nutjob extremists.  Both Democrats.  Both were chosen to lead immigration studies for Democrat presidents, Carter and Clinton respectively.  Both respected civil rights leaders.

And both recommended deportation of people who violated immigration laws.  Both saw removal as a valid and viable immigration enforcement tool.

The narrative has been co-opted and deportation has been made a dirty word.  Despite its place in the current laws of the land, it is avoided by county sheriffs and elected officials.  

At some point, sooner or later, we will need to accept deportation as a valid and necessary way to enforce immigration law and deter future illegal entry.

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