Saturday, September 25, 2021
HomePatriot DispatchesGOP can affirm Rule of Law and define Amnesty down

GOP can affirm Rule of Law and define Amnesty down

Prohibition, border crossings, adultery and the Rule of Law in practice

The attacks against Governor Rick Perry’s support for in-state college tuition for illegals in Texas by his rivals for the Republican Party presidential nomination reveals a need for clarity on the issue of illegal immigration writ large.

Most conservatives, including yours truly, opposed the Bush-McCain amnesty plan in the Summer of 2007 because it failed to ensure border security before any amnesty for those non-felon illegals already here. We believe that it is inherent in nationhood that its people must control who may enter its country and under what circumstances for reasons of public health and safety, as well as economic concerns.

We can’t have another 20 million illegals enter at their whim. We should revise the late 1960’s legal immigration law changes that socialized our policy. And we must secure the border.

But what of those already here, and especially those that have been here illegally for many years?

Some conservatives oppose any amnesty, even after the border is secured. I am not in that camp. I have long agreed with Charles Krauthammer that amnesty on all but voting rights would be the best course AFTER we build an actual and/or virtual fence between us and failed nation of Mexico.

But the internal GOP debate between tea partiers, conservatives, moderates and elites as a seminal election approaches reminds that we also need to be clear on what policies we favor now, BEFORE the border is secured. The debate sparked by Perry’s entry into the race has revealed some lazy thinking on the issue to my mind, of which I had unknowingly contributed.

I now lean toward de facto amnesty on all but voting rights now and will explain why below. But I want to be clear that I think this is a close call and that I certainly respect the efforts of others on encouraging self-deportation through e-verify and other means. I also want to be clear that I am not about to aid and abet the Democratic Party’s open borders policy to gain voters for a victim-dependent state. Congress should pass a law prohibiting states from allowing non-U.S. citizens to vote in all elections.

The Rule of Law: Written or as enforced

Ken Burn’s new series on Prohibition that began last night on PBS and which concerns a disrespected law that turned otherwise law-abiding citizens into “criminals” seems to me instructive on the issue of illegal immigration in America since the first amnesty signed into law by President Ronald Reagan in 1986.

A society cannot abide large pluralities technically defined as criminals, because of the inherent definition of the word as entailing nefarious intent, or mens re. This civilizational rule obtains whether it concerns the seeking of economic liberty or merely a drink. Deputy Barney Fife’s incarceration of the whole town of Mayberry for jaywalking also comes to mind.

Yes, it is against the law to cross the border, much as adultery was always a crime that was never enforced. But when did Americans begin to clamor for enforcement of the former? (They never did for the latter, but I digress…) Only after 20 million moved in and then only after September 11, 2001.

The de facto rule of law before 911 was an open border and the vast majority of Americans acquiesced in that non-Rule of Law. It seems to me a little late and quite unfair to the point of being the equivalent to a Bill of Attainder or  Ex Post Facto law to now treat those that have invested many years of their lives in this Country as spies that sneaked across the Rio Grande to sabotage our infrastructure.

Shouldn’t arguments based on the Rule of Law refer to law that We the People insisted upon being enforced? I think so. Moreover, shouldn’t the party that reveres federalism be understanding of states that can’t deport foreigners but must deal with the actual population within their borders? Obviously.

Aiding and abetting magnets before 911

In-state tuition is not the magnet. It also isn’t a “benefit” or “subsidy”. Colleges aren’t losing money on the fees being paid by their own residents. Out of staters are paying a premium.

The magnet for the 20 million have been many-fold, and certainly we need to return to an immigration system that does not welcome wards of the state. The magnets have been the shining cities of opportunity across the Fruited Plain, coupled with a pre-911 complacent people grown so affluent they became addicted to abortion and small families.

I am quite aware of small towns, especially in North Carolina a few years ago, that were inundated by hoards of illegals not yet assimilated that disrupted pursuits of happiness. I am certain that in isolated places, illegals have taken jobs that natives would otherwise have taken. But given our birthrate and need for economic growth, I question the extent of claims of major economic dislocation. I am open to data proving same, and I favor a fence to control the future.

But most of the 20 million are here because most American citizens had no real objection until we feared the next 911. But of course, the first Mohammed Atta came in legally and the next could come in via Canada or the UK.

Rick Perry hasn’t defended himself well. It is not heartless to first look after one’s own. After all, God himself endorsed the nation-state after he felled the Tower of Babel. But I have come to question the utility of looking after our own by essentially punishing what we wrought through our actions and inactions, no matter what section of the U.S. Code we could point to when convenient.

I continue to respect those that disagree with me and will not eliminate support for candidates based on this issue. God knows we see the warts of all politicians on debate stages, in New Jersey and in the White House.

But I do think it would be best for the GOP and America to accept our immediate actual neighbors as such, and celebrate their pursuits of happiness everywhere but in voting booths.

Mike DeVine

Editor – Hillbilly Politics

Co-Founder and Editor – Political Daily

Atlanta Law & Politics columnist –  Examiner.com

“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson

More DeVine Gamecock rooster crowings at Modern ConservativeUnified Patriots,  and Conservative Outlooks. All Charlotte Observer and Atlanta Journal-Constitution op-eds archived at Townhall.com.

Mike gamecock DeVine
A trial lawyer for two decades in South Carolina; owner of Ati Vista LLC since 2002 now associated with Lupa Law Firm; VP & Counsel for Buddy Allen Roofing & Construction Inc. since 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia; and a freelance writer, DeVine was the conservative voice of the Charlotte Observer from 2006-8 and has been the owner of HillbillyPolitics.com since 2009. www.devinelawvista.com

18 COMMENTS

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18 COMMENTS

  1. I have always viewed immigrants and immigration as a national blessing.
    I fall into the camp of removing the benefits and most would go home. The ones who stayed would make us a better country since without handouts they would be forced to carry their own load. Then figure out a path that includes english proficiency and civics and a deadline for learning both.
    I agree with Perry on the futility of building a huge fence on the one hand but not on the in state tuition.
    I know what you mean about a state charging a premium on out-of-staters. I had to pay it myself in WV because though a native son my parents did not live in WV when I attended WVU. Nevermind that I attended WV schools 8 out of 13 years including my senior year.
    But I do question, if all TX schools do not have open admissions with unlimited enrollments, then how many native, legal Texans were turned away from TX schools because enrollment was closed due to student populations inflated with illegals?

    • The problem I have with the just remove the benefits and they will self deport is that is what Pete Wilson tried to do in California in the 1990’s. Instead of self deport they left the California GOP in droves and turned a reliable red state into a safe blue state. I agree with gamecock that states should be required by federal law to prohibit illegals from voting, and this must be enforced. The legal hispanics will support a law like this.
      In Indiana I worked with a blond-haired blue-eyed Mexican. He was not an illegal, and he carried the documents to prove it. He and I had lunch together many times, and he told me the anger about illegals should be directed at the US Congress and the federal government for not enforcing law. He told me that it angers legal hispanics in the US a lot when a city cop walks into a bar after a fight and only asks the brown-skinned brown-eyed patrons for ID. He, as a blond-haired blue-eyed patron is given a pass and not asked for ID. There are problems with the theory that they are going to self deport if we just treat them harshly.

      • I agree with making it illegal to vote for illegals.
        Just saying if you are here for a handout and there are no handouts then you probably go home.
        Or you work. I am one of those that believe productive work always adds value to the nation no matter who does it.

        On the other hand, this doesn’t mean I am for illegal immigration.
        I suggested long ago we allow local police access to an ICE database of legal green card holders and arrest authority for illegals.

        If they check immigration status and find an illegal, let them incarcerate them until ICE comes to pick them up. And let the local govt bill 2 or 3 times the cost of incarceration to the federal government. Make catching illegals profitable for state and local government combined with no handouts and they will self deport.

        BUT

        In the case of folks with long-term residence, never on welfare and maybe even citizen children I would probably go along with some kind of path to at least residency without voting rights. And maybe citizenship.
        Only after the handouts stop and real deterrents like giving local police arrest authority for immigration violations is a reality.

        It really is a helluva question. Since our current law gives anchor babies citizenship. Do we toss the parents and keep the kids or what?
        The anchor baby nonsense has to stop.

  2. Well Gamecock I agree up to a point, that being the issue of assimilation.
    If somebody came here illegally, BUT is trying hard to assimilate, i.e. learning to use English in reading and writing and accepting the ‘culture’ of America “as it is”, (or at least as it ‘should be’), then yes indeed Welcome Amigo!
    On the other hand, enclaves of various ‘ethnicities’ that refuse to assimilate and instead start demanding that WE support THEIR language/culture, insisting on having official publications in THEIR language, demanding that our teachers teach their kids in their native tongue, no.

    If you come to this ‘Land of Opportunity’ yet think we need to convert to your culture all I can say is Go Home! We don’t need you.

    • The biggest assimilation problem in this country emanates from Mayflower descendants called liberal Democrats, especially in academia, that teach anti-American values. A high percentage of the young native borns are not assimilated! And at least most of the illegals are Christians. Yes, we have had so much illegal immigration so fast that we do have assimilation problems, but I don’t think these problems are long-term except in California.

  3. All the Alabama legislature had to do is say some words and voila! Overcrowding and poor student-teacher ratios in the public schools abated. A well-thought out campaign of the benefits of voluntary repatriation at local, state and national levels could be the answer to those who say “Well, we can’t just deport 15 million people!”

  4. I’ll go out on a limb. Some of you may not want me back. But if you’ve seen my moniker here before, you know I am no statist or Lib. Some things can only be understood from a local perspective. Sorry, conservatives in Kansas and Minnesota, you may not be able to follow me on this. Texas is the only state in the Union with a for real, honest to God 1250 mile long border with a *real* foreign country. Back to the days of the Spanish Empire, Texas has been economically tied to her Mexican sister states Tamaulipas, Coahuila and Nuevo Leon. (NOT the restof Mexico, though, nor Mexico City) Since NAFTA, that legitimate trade has gone exponential. Its one of the big engines driving Texas prosperity. While the media focuses on drug wars, truth is the regular Mexican econonmy has been doing relatively *better* (as has Canada’s) than the US’ (something else Obama would rather you not know!). But Rick Perry does know,and treats the Mexican border states like the sisters they are. It’s good policy and has paid off handsomely for Texas. Favorable tuition deals are part of that, and are used mostly in the Valley (check your maps) not upstate at SMU, Rice or UT-Austin. Now, Rick Perry also should have known he is the greatest threat running to the mainstream/RINO/Lib Dem amalgamation, and that they would come at him full bore from the get-go. He and his time must get their act together and regain initiative.

    • All true re Texas, but my arguments for non-voting amnesty even before we secure the border is based on Yankee Judeo-Christian values. We as a people acquiesced in the mass migration after Reagan signed the last amnesty bill in 1986 that game amnesty to 3 million. It is unfair to now, after so many have pursued the American dream and established lives here in all 50 states, to now call them criminals.

      • That’s fine, I concur to the extent (having lived on the border three years for work) I have always thought some kind of geographically phased-zone guest worker program, with different levels of assimilation, would work just fine. Problemis as we all know, the current non enforced chaos is what an evil cabal of certain businesses, and Marxist one worlders seeking to erode US authority, want. The people stuck in the middle are the working middle class.

  5. More interesting factoids if you’ve never been there (the Texas- Mexican border).
    1. When Santa Ana suspended the 1824 Mexican Constitution and marched north in 1836 to quell the Texas rebellion, he was also coming to invade and put in line (via mass executions,mostly) Monterrey, Nuevo Laredo, San Antonio de Bexar – some of his northern states had also jumped at the chance to rebel against Mexico City, with Texas.
    2. The Rio Grande Valley has exploded in economic development – it may be one of the few SMSAs in the US that technically never went into recession the last 3 years.
    3. Unlike AZ, CA and the NM desert border strips, the Tex-Mx Valley on both sides of the Rio Grande is heavily populated with good-sized cities. English and Spanish are both spoken freely and fluently and on both sides of the border. Very similar to Alsace Lorraine in Europe, with Texas as France in that example. Rich Mexicans come over and buy lots of real estate and Land Rovers and shop the malls in Texas. Texans fill their houses with beautiful stone tile worked by the world’s experts from just over the river.
    4. The largest migratory group into the Valley is…retirees from the Midwest. They are called “snowbirds” by the locals, and they stay the winter-spring if not longer. The tropical climate is a real draw.
    5. Partly because of the above, Texas has so much dealings with foreign countries including Mexico, that her Secretary of State is the only such state officer in the Union that functions as a kind of state Secretary of State for foreign affairs and relations. The state can just never get away from all the reminders, it was once sovereign and had its own business to conduct in the world
    .6. The drug lords are there,in Mexico, and yes they are very bad. The revolutions that tend to happen over there periodically, are worse. Miscalculating the place, as Washington invariably does, is a great way to get another one brewing. As I said, this is all kind of hard to see from the perspective of the upper Great Plains, Pacific Coast, or Deep South – or New York City.

  6. Initially I thought the idea of disallowing voting was a great concept. But it won’t fly for long. I see the other side’s argument shaping up along the lines of ‘now they’ve come out of the shadows, but are only second-class citizens without the vote. This is America, all men are created equal, they deserve to be able to vote (Democrat).’ You KNOW that’s how they work!

    Twenty years ago, nearly to the day, I listened to a briefing from the top enlisted dude in the Canadian Defense Forces, as a student at the USAF Senior NCO Academy. When he ran out of official patter, he just looked at the 200+ of us in the auditorium and said “Watch out! Next you’ll be getting the queers too!” All of us were ROTFLMAO then, but look where we are today under the damning mantle of ‘fairness’.

    • Yes, second class citizenship is a problem, but so is the notion that 20 million will self deport or be deported. In a perfect world, I would oppose the former and I do oppose the latter. I suspect that a large portion of those granted non-voting amnesty will apply for citizenship and that with border security we would greatly reduce the second class population over time.

  1. I have always viewed immigrants and immigration as a national blessing.
    I fall into the camp of removing the benefits and most would go home. The ones who stayed would make us a better country since without handouts they would be forced to carry their own load. Then figure out a path that includes english proficiency and civics and a deadline for learning both.
    I agree with Perry on the futility of building a huge fence on the one hand but not on the in state tuition.
    I know what you mean about a state charging a premium on out-of-staters. I had to pay it myself in WV because though a native son my parents did not live in WV when I attended WVU. Nevermind that I attended WV schools 8 out of 13 years including my senior year.
    But I do question, if all TX schools do not have open admissions with unlimited enrollments, then how many native, legal Texans were turned away from TX schools because enrollment was closed due to student populations inflated with illegals?

    • The problem I have with the just remove the benefits and they will self deport is that is what Pete Wilson tried to do in California in the 1990’s. Instead of self deport they left the California GOP in droves and turned a reliable red state into a safe blue state. I agree with gamecock that states should be required by federal law to prohibit illegals from voting, and this must be enforced. The legal hispanics will support a law like this.
      In Indiana I worked with a blond-haired blue-eyed Mexican. He was not an illegal, and he carried the documents to prove it. He and I had lunch together many times, and he told me the anger about illegals should be directed at the US Congress and the federal government for not enforcing law. He told me that it angers legal hispanics in the US a lot when a city cop walks into a bar after a fight and only asks the brown-skinned brown-eyed patrons for ID. He, as a blond-haired blue-eyed patron is given a pass and not asked for ID. There are problems with the theory that they are going to self deport if we just treat them harshly.

      • I agree with making it illegal to vote for illegals.
        Just saying if you are here for a handout and there are no handouts then you probably go home.
        Or you work. I am one of those that believe productive work always adds value to the nation no matter who does it.

        On the other hand, this doesn’t mean I am for illegal immigration.
        I suggested long ago we allow local police access to an ICE database of legal green card holders and arrest authority for illegals.

        If they check immigration status and find an illegal, let them incarcerate them until ICE comes to pick them up. And let the local govt bill 2 or 3 times the cost of incarceration to the federal government. Make catching illegals profitable for state and local government combined with no handouts and they will self deport.

        BUT

        In the case of folks with long-term residence, never on welfare and maybe even citizen children I would probably go along with some kind of path to at least residency without voting rights. And maybe citizenship.
        Only after the handouts stop and real deterrents like giving local police arrest authority for immigration violations is a reality.

        It really is a helluva question. Since our current law gives anchor babies citizenship. Do we toss the parents and keep the kids or what?
        The anchor baby nonsense has to stop.

  2. Well Gamecock I agree up to a point, that being the issue of assimilation.
    If somebody came here illegally, BUT is trying hard to assimilate, i.e. learning to use English in reading and writing and accepting the ‘culture’ of America “as it is”, (or at least as it ‘should be’), then yes indeed Welcome Amigo!
    On the other hand, enclaves of various ‘ethnicities’ that refuse to assimilate and instead start demanding that WE support THEIR language/culture, insisting on having official publications in THEIR language, demanding that our teachers teach their kids in their native tongue, no.

    If you come to this ‘Land of Opportunity’ yet think we need to convert to your culture all I can say is Go Home! We don’t need you.

    • The biggest assimilation problem in this country emanates from Mayflower descendants called liberal Democrats, especially in academia, that teach anti-American values. A high percentage of the young native borns are not assimilated! And at least most of the illegals are Christians. Yes, we have had so much illegal immigration so fast that we do have assimilation problems, but I don’t think these problems are long-term except in California.

  3. All the Alabama legislature had to do is say some words and voila! Overcrowding and poor student-teacher ratios in the public schools abated. A well-thought out campaign of the benefits of voluntary repatriation at local, state and national levels could be the answer to those who say “Well, we can’t just deport 15 million people!”

  4. I’ll go out on a limb. Some of you may not want me back. But if you’ve seen my moniker here before, you know I am no statist or Lib. Some things can only be understood from a local perspective. Sorry, conservatives in Kansas and Minnesota, you may not be able to follow me on this. Texas is the only state in the Union with a for real, honest to God 1250 mile long border with a *real* foreign country. Back to the days of the Spanish Empire, Texas has been economically tied to her Mexican sister states Tamaulipas, Coahuila and Nuevo Leon. (NOT the restof Mexico, though, nor Mexico City) Since NAFTA, that legitimate trade has gone exponential. Its one of the big engines driving Texas prosperity. While the media focuses on drug wars, truth is the regular Mexican econonmy has been doing relatively *better* (as has Canada’s) than the US’ (something else Obama would rather you not know!). But Rick Perry does know,and treats the Mexican border states like the sisters they are. It’s good policy and has paid off handsomely for Texas. Favorable tuition deals are part of that, and are used mostly in the Valley (check your maps) not upstate at SMU, Rice or UT-Austin. Now, Rick Perry also should have known he is the greatest threat running to the mainstream/RINO/Lib Dem amalgamation, and that they would come at him full bore from the get-go. He and his time must get their act together and regain initiative.

    • All true re Texas, but my arguments for non-voting amnesty even before we secure the border is based on Yankee Judeo-Christian values. We as a people acquiesced in the mass migration after Reagan signed the last amnesty bill in 1986 that game amnesty to 3 million. It is unfair to now, after so many have pursued the American dream and established lives here in all 50 states, to now call them criminals.

      • That’s fine, I concur to the extent (having lived on the border three years for work) I have always thought some kind of geographically phased-zone guest worker program, with different levels of assimilation, would work just fine. Problemis as we all know, the current non enforced chaos is what an evil cabal of certain businesses, and Marxist one worlders seeking to erode US authority, want. The people stuck in the middle are the working middle class.

  5. More interesting factoids if you’ve never been there (the Texas- Mexican border).
    1. When Santa Ana suspended the 1824 Mexican Constitution and marched north in 1836 to quell the Texas rebellion, he was also coming to invade and put in line (via mass executions,mostly) Monterrey, Nuevo Laredo, San Antonio de Bexar – some of his northern states had also jumped at the chance to rebel against Mexico City, with Texas.
    2. The Rio Grande Valley has exploded in economic development – it may be one of the few SMSAs in the US that technically never went into recession the last 3 years.
    3. Unlike AZ, CA and the NM desert border strips, the Tex-Mx Valley on both sides of the Rio Grande is heavily populated with good-sized cities. English and Spanish are both spoken freely and fluently and on both sides of the border. Very similar to Alsace Lorraine in Europe, with Texas as France in that example. Rich Mexicans come over and buy lots of real estate and Land Rovers and shop the malls in Texas. Texans fill their houses with beautiful stone tile worked by the world’s experts from just over the river.
    4. The largest migratory group into the Valley is…retirees from the Midwest. They are called “snowbirds” by the locals, and they stay the winter-spring if not longer. The tropical climate is a real draw.
    5. Partly because of the above, Texas has so much dealings with foreign countries including Mexico, that her Secretary of State is the only such state officer in the Union that functions as a kind of state Secretary of State for foreign affairs and relations. The state can just never get away from all the reminders, it was once sovereign and had its own business to conduct in the world
    .6. The drug lords are there,in Mexico, and yes they are very bad. The revolutions that tend to happen over there periodically, are worse. Miscalculating the place, as Washington invariably does, is a great way to get another one brewing. As I said, this is all kind of hard to see from the perspective of the upper Great Plains, Pacific Coast, or Deep South – or New York City.

  6. Initially I thought the idea of disallowing voting was a great concept. But it won’t fly for long. I see the other side’s argument shaping up along the lines of ‘now they’ve come out of the shadows, but are only second-class citizens without the vote. This is America, all men are created equal, they deserve to be able to vote (Democrat).’ You KNOW that’s how they work!

    Twenty years ago, nearly to the day, I listened to a briefing from the top enlisted dude in the Canadian Defense Forces, as a student at the USAF Senior NCO Academy. When he ran out of official patter, he just looked at the 200+ of us in the auditorium and said “Watch out! Next you’ll be getting the queers too!” All of us were ROTFLMAO then, but look where we are today under the damning mantle of ‘fairness’.

    • Yes, second class citizenship is a problem, but so is the notion that 20 million will self deport or be deported. In a perfect world, I would oppose the former and I do oppose the latter. I suspect that a large portion of those granted non-voting amnesty will apply for citizenship and that with border security we would greatly reduce the second class population over time.

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