Jon E. Dougherty is a Missouri-based political science major, author, writer and columnist. Follow him on Twitter.
Political correctness, ushered into existence by the left-leaning media-generated culture kings and queens who fancy themselves guardians of the world’s feelings, is destroying every last vestige of common sense, debate and thoughtful disagreement in this country. Nowhere is this more evident than the issue of illegal immigration.
So politically “off-limits” is the subject that you won’t even hear anyone discuss it who is running for governor in the circus known as the California recall election.
California, mind you, is home to the highest concentration of illegal immigrants in the nation. Some say it has contributed mightily to the state’s $38 billion-plus budget deficit. Californians even passed a proposition banning welfare and aid to illegals (before a federal judge overturned it). Yet candidates aren’t discussing it. Wonder why?
Maybe it’s because many of those same politicians created the mess in the first place.
In the movie “Gangs of New York,” which is set in the early 1860s at the height of the Civil War, local politicians were depicted giving newly arrived Irish immigrants food and water. It wasn’t that they were particularly fond of my Irish ancestors, mind you. Rather, providing Irish newcomers with a bit of hospitality was openly portrayed as a way to secure future votes.
Now, fast-forward to 2003. Today’s self-serving politicians (local and federal alike) shower newly arriving Hispanics with all sorts of “gifts” provided by taxpayers. And they do it because they want their votes.
There are distinct differences between the political pandering in 1863 New York City and 2003 San Diego, Los Angeles, Tucson, Phoenix and all points north-north east. For one, America expected more of immigrants in the 19th century. Immigrants were expected to learn English (our language). They were expected to learn history (our culture). They were expected to assimilate (our society). Mostly, they were expected to arrive here legally (our laws).
But these days, we have “civil-rights” groups and federal judges outlawing attempts to force immigrants to learn English only.
We have “civil-rights” groups and teachers’ unions opposing attempts to teach immigrants American history.
We have “civil-rights” groups and lawmakers thwarting attempts to force immigrants to assimilate into our society.
It’s “bigoted” to require immigrants to speak and read English if they want to be here. It’s “mean-spirited” to defend our borders. It’s “selfish” to demand immigrants contribute. It’s “phobic” to want to keep out the worst of immigrants.
And almost no one with the authority seems to mind that millions of immigrants enter our country illegally every year. Many of them stay. So instead of running them out and insisting they come to America the right way, our leaders pander to them. It makes you wonder what part of “illegal” immigration they don’t understand.
In California, for instance, state law requires authorities to cooperate with federal officials in keeping out illegal immigrants. But many cities in the “Golden State” have actually, if not officially, become sanctuaries for them. Cops locally are ordered not to detain or arrest persons known to be in the country illegally.
Federal law prohibits illegal entry into the country. But too many big political donors need the cheap labor, in order to pay for their hefty campaign contributions, I suppose.
In other countries, troops are deployed to guarantee the sovereignty and integrity of national borders. In the U.S., however, that’s considered xenophobic – even while our leaders our mouthing “homeland security” and deploying our troops overseas to protect the sovereignty and integrity of other nations.
What part of “illegal immigration” do our politicians not understand?