Tuesday, August 10, 2010

If It Weren't Illegal, Would It Still Be Wrong?

On the way to work a couple of weeks ago, I heard some mentions on the radio about the Arizona immigration law controversy. Somehow my brain then formulated the question posed in the title. I suppose my brain also accessed the memory of listening to some Mexican lawyer-type person on NPR talking about how corrupt Mexican law enforcement is.

One of the purported purposes of this blog is to look at every day life as a stranger to this world, as someone just passing through. As someone alien to the customs that everyone else observes. So let's now look at the immigration debate from that perspective.

Currently, it is illegal to cross the border without proper authorization, and as such, theoretically one will be deported if he is found to have done this. Now let's take the illegal part out and re-examine. Say there was no US law against entering the country without permission. Is the act of entering a sovereign country with (presumably) no harmful intentions wrong in God's eyes? I would think not. I admit to having no facts on this statement, but perhaps many of the illegal immigrants are trying to provide a nice life for their families? I feel sympathy for people who live in a country where corruption, extortion, and kidnappings are fairly common. I rather like that Harmony can take Pearl to the park during the day and not have a significant probability of being abducted.

Obviously the government cannot just open the borders wide and not expect craziness to ensue; there'd have to be some other measures in place to document who's in the country. And we should not just let any old Juan into the country, especially if he has proven himself to be a rather unsavory character in the past.

I wonder how enforce-the-border people would react if the government passed a sensible immigration reform law that made it much easier to enter this country? Would many of them be exposed as xenophobes? Or would it actually be true that they just wanted the law to be enforced for their safety? I would hope it would be the latter.

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  • Alan

    I think it comes down to whether or not it is "right" to own property... and if so, to control the use of that property. The same principle that permits (or not) you to lock the door to your house, or to build a fence around your yard, would apply to national borders (I think...)

    OTOH I completely understand the motivation of the non-criminal element trying to cross the border into the US. IMO the only long-term solution is to fix the problems on the south side of that border.

  • CappuccinoLife

    Well, I'm pro-immigration. :D

    I think what would be awsome is better border control, and a massive overhaul of our entire immigration system, making it simpler and less subject to power-tripping individuals and their whims and fancies.

    I think it would be really nice to make it easier for decent, hard-working people to come here, and harder for the drug/crime element to get in.