By Onan Coca
We conservatives are often derided as anti-immigrant, when in reality, nothing could be further from the truth. Immigration is an important part of a nation’s growth and advancement. Our nation, in particular, is the greatest immigrant nation to ever exist; one of the most outstanding reasons for our greatness has been our open-armed policy toward immigrants.
That’s not to say that immigrants have always had a good time upon their arrival.
Throughout history we’ve experienced waves of discomfort with the “kinds” of people arriving on our shores. Irish Catholics in the mid to late 1800s were so disliked that an entire political party grew around the hope of stopping their arrival (the Know-Nothing Party). The Chinese were welcomed unwelcomingly in the late 1800s as well. The Chinese weren’t liked, but they were needed – how else would we get the cheap (and controllable) labor that would build the western railroads? Nobody was happy about the arrival of Europeans from Southern and Eastern Europe in the early 1900s either. And I’ve simply skipped over the arrival of thousands of Africans who were forced to migrate to our shores in the 1700 and 1800s.
My point is that immigration has always been a hot topic, and as in anything, there has always been disagreement about how to handle it.
As conservatives, our most basic problem with the current discussion on comprehensive immigration reform is two-fold.
First, we have been fighting the war on terror for over a decade, and we know that our intelligence community is extremely worried about how easy it is for illegal aliens to enter our country through our southern border. The thought process is, if poor Latin American migrant workers looking to make money can get into our country so easily – how much easier would it be for a terrorist hell-bent on our destruction to get in the same way? If we are to have immigration reform, we must make our borders more secure. If we are to have immigration reform, we must have a way to ensure that everyone who has arrived without our knowledge is not a danger to our society.
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