Here is a copy of an opinion letter that was published today in my local newspaper. My response, which will be printed in tomorrows paper follows.
What is the true meaning of being an American citizen?
The first perspective is personal. My ancestry dates back to the Pilgrims who landed at Plymouth Rock in 1620. The Pilgrims came to America seeking religious freedom – and they came with a legal charter from England’s King James I. My other ancestors came legally to America in the 1800s from Norway, Germany, and Hungary. All were seeking freedom and the opportunity for a new life so they could pursue their dreams.
The other perspective comes from founding fathers Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Jefferson was magnificent in writing the Declaration of Independence, and James Madison was highly instrumental in the writing of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Both Jefferson and Madison saw American citizenship as a sacred foundation for the growth and prosperity of a new nation.
On American citizenship, Jefferson made this memorable statement: “Certainly one of the highest duties of the citizen is a scrupulous obedience to the laws of the nation.”
With these perspectives, it is only right that we as good American citizens welcome those coming to American legally and looking for freedom and opportunity – and the desire to build new lives. We should especially welcome with open arms those people fleeing communist and fascist and terrorist dictatorships – people from Somalia, Sudan, Cuba, Zimbabwe, Iran, and North Korea.
With such sincere thoughts, should the idealism of Jefferson and Madison, along with the idealism of legal immigrants, be cast aside for crass political objectives?
In the 1980s, Ronald Reagan chose to trust liberal Democrats on immigration reform. Liberal Democrats said “Hey, let’s give amnesty to two million illegal immigrants, and secure the borders.” Amnesty happened. Secure borders never happened. Reagan said it was the biggest mistake he ever made!
So thanks to liberal Democrat deception, we now have 12 million illegal immigrants in America. Jay Leno calls them “undocumented Democrats.” These illegal immigrants have brazenly besmirched Thomas Jefferson’s simple concept of citizen honor and duty. Nonetheless, the hard objective of liberal Democrats is to once again grant mass amnesty.
Fair-minded Americans should find this quite disturbing. Fair-minded Americans should be shocked that most illegal immigrants could not care less about the ideals of Jefferson and Madison — or the ideals of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies, what great numbers of illegal immigrants are seeking is American welfare: free medical care through Obamacare, drivers licenses, free K12 education, subsidized college education, etc., — costing American taxpayers billions.
Read the entire study here: http://www.cis.org/2012-profile-of-americas-foreign-born-population#birth
So what’s the answer to this flagrant abuse of American sensibilities and values?
Legal immigrants must be the sole focus. Many such legal immigrants have skills that would be of great benefit to America’s future. They want the freedom to work, they want the freedom to build their families and pursue their dreams, they know they must learn English, and they want to become American citizens.
As illegal immigrants make a mockery of American law, seek welfare with fraudulent identification, and take jobs away from American citizens desperate for work, illegal immigrants currently in America may apply for legal work visas but they have forfeited their path to American citizenship.
America is an exceptional country. America is not a corrupt third world country where anything goes. American citizens, new and old, must be vigilant in maintaining America’s magnificent ideals and values.
This is my response
History, it is said, is written by the winners. For the most part, I think that’s probably true. It is to this textbook history of America that Mr Richard Hansen refers in his opinion letter of April 10th in this paper.
He states that his Plymouth Rock ancesters as well as others came here “legally” Nothing could be further from the truth. No white Europeans were ever given permission to come here by the people who were living here. EVER. He refers to the ideals of Jefferson and Madison. I’m not sure about Madison but Jefferson thought it perfectly alright to own other human beings. The doctrine of “Manifest Destiny” and the doctrine of Discovery were ideas thought up to make it alright to plow through this country taking anything we wanted. We didn’t bring “freedom and citizenship”. We brought death, disease, and genocide to the Native Americans. If you want to talk about illegal immigrants, all white European ancestors were illegal immigrants. This country is not built on a foundation of freedom and citizenship. It is built on a foundation of millions of Native American Bones. History from the losing side.