Monday, July 1, 2013
Current Political Controversies, USA
I say that it is disingenuous because I do not believe for a minute that either the Democrats or the Republicans have the best interests of immigrants (legal or illegal) in mind with this legislation. Both sides pushing for this are thinking of votes and nothing else. The Democrats are looking at voting records showing a consistent trend of Hispanics (mostly Mexicans who are the overwhelming majority of illegal immigrants to the United States) voting for their party in massive numbers. They want this to continue or even increase and so, as far as they are concerned, when it comes to Hispanic immigrants, the more the better. The Republicans, on the other hand, look at how tiny the number of Hispanics are who voted for their guy in the last presidential election and hope that by passing this bill they can attract more Hispanic voters and take the immigration issue away from the Democrats who use it as a way of rallying the Hispanic population to their party by painting the GOP as a bunch of anti-immigrant racists. Rest assured, if the majority of Mexican-Americans were voting Republican (like Cuban-Americans traditionally have) it would be the Republicans clamoring for legalization while the Democrats would have built a border fence to rival the Great Wall of China. For the Democrats at least, this makes perfect sense. The numbers do not lie and, it is true, when it comes to the Democrat Party, the more Mexicans who come to America the better it is for them.
For the Republicans, however, it is not so clear cut. In the first place, they are assuming that Hispanics are single-issue voters and that softening their position on immigration will win them votes. If this passes, they will learn the hard way that such is not the case. Hispanics vote Democrat not because of their stance on immigration alone but because of their entire platform and just because the GOP helps grant citizenship to millions of illegal immigrants does not mean they will all suddenly become Republicans out of gratitude. After all, it was the Republican Party that ended slavery in America and yet the African-American community votes consistently and overwhelmingly Democrat. Thus we are presented with the ironic situation of the first Black President of the United States belonging to the same political party as Confederate President Jefferson Davis. The recently deceased Democrat Senator Robert Byrd was a former member of the Ku Klux Klan who filibustered against the Civil Rights Act, supported racial segregation and voted against the only two Black nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court in American history. Yet, none of this was held against him. His opinions changed along with the platform of the Democrat Party and he ended his career with strong African-American support and a 100% approval rating from the NAACP.
Similarly, Hispanics are not going to suddenly shift to the Republican Party just because they helped pass immigration reform, especially when it is so bitterly contested within the GOP ranks. And, just for the record, if the next GOP presidential candidate is a Cuban-American like Marco Rubio or Ted Cruz, that is not going to win immediate Hispanic support either. By supporting this bill, Republicans are only helping the Democrats by supplying them with even more new voters. They are also under pressure from their friends in the big business community who want more cheap labor for the growing number of low-skill jobs that legal Americans will not do. It also means a bigger membership pool for the labor unions and more potential strikes in the future as the influx drives down wages. However, beyond the politics (good for Democrats, bad for Republicans) it is simply a bad bill. The promises of border security are a joke. A law only works if it is enforced and as is obvious from the number of “sanctuary cities” around the country and the actions of the Obama administration when it comes to picking and choosing which immigration laws to enforce and which ones to ignore, it is pure fantasy to think that this bill will actually increase border security in any meaningful way. Furthermore, the idea that people are going to “go to the back of the line” and learn English and pay fines and back taxes and all that in order to become a citizen is laughable. Why should any illegal immigrant wish to do such a thing?
Think about this: illegal immigrants come here, for the most part, to work knowing full well that they will be “living in the shadows” as the saying goes. They know how things are and they come anyway, so that must mean that no matter how less than ideal the situation is, it is still better than living in the utter failure that is the United Mexican States. They already get free healthcare via the emergency rooms of the country which cannot turn anyone away. They earn a meager wage but more than they would earn in Mexico and, as they are doing this all “under the table” they get to keep all they earn without paying any income taxes. Why would they want to go to all the trouble, time and expense of taking advantage of this bill to become a citizen when all it is going to get them is the right to pay more in taxes? They cannot vote but that doesn’t matter much because every child born here can so the number of new voters still goes up (yay Democrats!) and their community is still represented. Their healthcare is taken care of, their children can go to school, their children born here can vote, they can already get scholarships and government assistance to go to college. In many places the police are not allowed to even try to enforce immigration laws so, there really are not that many disadvantages to being illegally in the country as things stand now.
I also have to mention the support of the Catholic Church for this comprehensive immigration bill because supporters of it (Democrats especially) love to bring that up. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops have given their support to the bill and Archbishop Jose Gomez (formerly of San Antonio, Texas but now of Los Angeles, California) is one of the clerics who have openly praised the effort to grant citizenship to the millions of illegal aliens living in America. To them, all I have to say is that they should, perhaps, look at the voting records again that I mentioned above. I will assume they have all of the best and noble intentions at heart in supporting this but at the end of the day it means more Democrat voters and, lest anyone has forgotten, the Democrats are the party that favors things like abortion, contraception, gay “marriage”, embryonic stem-cell research and other things the Catholic Church adamantly opposes. Archbishop Gomez even linked this bill to the campaign for religious freedom the Catholic Church launched in opposition to the requirement under Obamacare for religious institutions to provide healthcare coverage for birth control and abortion-inducing drugs. That seems rather odd considering that the passage of this bill will mean more support for the same party that put those requirements on the books in the first place. It doesn’t sound nice, I know, these are generalizations, but the voting record is the voting record. The fact of the matter is, with so many racial minorities voting overwhelmingly for the Democrats in every election, the Republicans have already lost the demographic battle. The only question with this bill is whether or not they will lend the left a hand in finishing themselves off.
Now, as to the gay “marriage” non-ruling from the Supremes, I really do not have that much to say that I have not said already. The only thing I will add is that all of this is not really about the legal rights of homosexuals. Unfortunately, I have only heard one commentator explain what it is really about and that was on Canadian TV and a station which even few Canadians could watch if they wanted to. The fact of the matter is the Democrats do not really care that much about gay “marriage” itself. They do not lose sleep at night in mental anguish that Adam and Steve cannot have their conjugal union “blessed” by the government. No, what is really at issue here is getting religion out of the public square entirely. It is about breaking down any connection at all between religion and elections. Homosexuals could get everything they want without the word “marriage” but that is not sufficient because it is not finally about that. What this is really about is making gay “marriage” legal so that any church which refuses to marry a gay couple can be sued for discrimination and, under the anti-discrimination laws, would lose. They would have to stop marrying anyone or lose their tax-exempt status. Most probably would not risk that and would simply change their position on the issue and stop talking about homosexual behavior being a sin (if any still do). That is what this all really boils down to; taking away the tax-exempt status of religious institutions in the hope that they will be financially ruined and wither away. It is also one more reason, in addition to my own moral beliefs, that I cannot and will not ever support such a thing, inevitable though it may be. Hopeless odds have never deterred me yet.
Those are my views, feel free to be outraged if you like, just don’t make a mess.