Saturday, April 22, 2006

Illegal Immigrants are Criminals

One of the arguments that is regularly employed by illegal aliens is "We aren't criminals or terrorists. We just came here to work." How could anyone be against that? Why would anyone want to deport people who just want to make an honest living?

The obvious first point is that illegal immigration is illegal. Hard-working, honest people don't violate our laws by crossing our borders illegally, staying here illegally, and using phony documents illegally.

More importantly, though, illegal immigration should be illegal. Letting in anyone who wants to work would amount to a policy of unlimited immigration. No country has such a policy. It would be a disaster, particularly in a country that people actually want to live in, like America. Almost everyone concedes that there must be some limit on immigration.

But why? Well, consider the alternative. What are the problems with unrestricted immigration? Terrorists, drug runners, and gang members could come into our country. Tens, perhaps hundreds of millions would flood in, artificially reducing American wages are costing us billions in social welfare payments. They would not assimilate to our culture but would overwhelm it, making our country like those from which they came.

For these problems to be avoided, there must be some limits on immigration. There must be some screening process to exclude those who should not be allowed into our country. These rules must be enforced. For these rules to have meaning, those who break them must be deported, and those who aid them with illegal documents and jobs must be punished.

The illegal alien might respond, "but I'm not a terrorist!" However, the millions who break our immigration laws make it harder to catch those are. If terrorists, drug runners, and gang members were the only people sneaking across our borders, they would be much easier to catch. Thus illegal aliens make terrorist attacks, drug addiction, and gang wars more likely.

The illegal alien might say, "I'm just here to work!" But there are no jobs that Americans won't do. Illegal aliens take jobs that Americans would have done for more money. Even if illegals don't intend to use government services, they still cost our schools and hospitals millions of dollars. Even if they don't cost us tax money, they make it easier for the millions who do to sneak in to this country.

Similarly, the illegal alien may not intend to cause cultural disintegration, but it happens anyway. Culture is what you do without thinking about it. The differences in the areas that have already become dominated by illegals are all too obvious. Furthermore, illegals make it easier for those who do want to retake the Southwest to come here. They also provide a more sympathetic audience for those who preach reconquista. This is true even when this is not their intent.

A helpful analogy is to compare illegal immigration to drunk driving. Drunk drivers don't want to kill anyone. However, they put everyone at greater risk through their actions. Illegal immigrants may not want to hurt anyone. But they cause harm in all the ways listed above. In both cases, what matters is not intentions, but results.

Illegal immigration is a crime, and illegal immigrants are criminals. As they should be.

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