In the wake of this week's debate on immigration, I am starting to wonder if there's a bit of a marketing job going on.
It feels like one side is saying that the other side is "anti-immigration."
But I wonder if the other side is really "anti-immigrant" overall OR are they "anti-ILLEGAL immigration?"
I read a Facebook post from someone earlier this week who wrote:
"My family and I came to America on tourist visas and overstayed. Like the vast majority of undocumented immigrants, we came because we loved the idea of America, we loved America's promise, we loved what America stood for: opportunity, fairness, justice. I did not recognize the America I know and love in what I heard tonight."
The comment struck me as very odd and potentially contradictory.
He wrote that he loves that America stands for fairness. Yet it sounds like his family took advantage of the system and got things that others ,who couldn't do what they did, were not able to obtain.
I didn't understand how that is fair.
It didn't seem like equal justice.
My sense (and I could be wrong) is that the notion of fairness described in the post is what is at the root of the immigration issue.
If America is a country of laws, justice, and fairness (in theory), why should people where one of the first activities was a violation of the law, somehow get an advantage over people who are following the rules, laws, and procedures and 'waiting in line' outside of the country?
Doesn't that seem unfair?
I'm all for immigration. I'm the grandchild of immigrants. It's what America was built on and it's what keeps the country fresh in many way.s
I'd like to do what we can to bring in a balance of people who can help make us better because of their skills and those who really need to be helped from bad situations.
I'd like to do what we can to keep people who want to harm us out of the country.
And we have to be reasonable about the simple fact that there are people who are already here. Mass deportation isn't the answer.
Still, I'd like it to be consistent with our ideals of "justice for all."
Maybe I'm just naive and idealistic.
I just wonder if I'm in the majority or minority on this issue.