The Big Problem With the Amnesty Bill

I'm not excited about the new amnesty bill heading to the House, for reasons of:

  • Flooding the job market with relatively unskilled, uneducated competition for unemployed Americans

  • The new "immigrants" - really, those who were so self-centered as to break the law to enable themselves to bypass normal immigration laws - will be permitted to avail themselves of all kinds of services, as long as they have a kid. No, the illegal will TECHNICALLY not be eligible for welfare and other benefits. However, the kid will - and guess who will be collecting that money on behalf of the young citizen?

  • It continues to encourage uncontrolled entry into the USA.

  • Border control is NOT mandatory. It is "nice IF the administration feels like doing it, but failure to impose will not affect the status of the newly Democratic voter".

  • NO requirement that the newly amnestied learn English, acquaint themselves with our customs, laws, culture, or norms, or pay back for any benefits they have already received. God forbid that they have to follow the same rules as the taxpayers. Crimes are ignored, including use of ID, drunken driving, and gang activity.

But, other than that, there are major problems, as shown in today's National Review post. What John Fonte calls "patriotic integration" is ignored.

Alexander’s “patriotic integration” proposals were incorporated into both the 2006 and 2007 immigration bills. They called for the “patriotic integration of prospective citizens into the American way of life by providing civics, history, and English . . . with a special emphasis on attachment to the principles of the Constitution of the United States, the heroes of American history (including military heroes) and the meaning of the Oath of Allegiance.”

Isn't that all retro nonsense?

No. How can we expect these new citizens to begin thinking of themselves as Americans, unless we purposefully teach them what that means? Without some effort to bring them into our culture, they will remain separate.

That way lays tribalism, a concept that keeps permanent divisions between the sub-groups. In other countries, they have tribal groups that NEVER integrate - in Japan (even after generations living in the country, Koreans are NOT accepted), the Mideast (Shia and Sunni, but also Kurds, Christians, and Jews), and even France (the Basques, historically, but more recently, Algerians and other Muslims).

This has generally not been the case in America. Only a few small groups are separate - the Amish and other groups that marry along religious lines. After 1 or 2 generations, most immigrants start "mixing it up", producing the typical American mix.

Most of us have some idea of our family heritage. Over time, it gets more muddled, and only a few distinct customs differentiate us from our neighbors.

Regardless of the degree of intermarriage in a given family, it was always expected that the individuals would be taught basic American law, custom, and political structure. They would know the basic history of our country, and the individuals that were responsible for it.

Isn't that history exclusionist?

No. Everyone can be a part of it - most minority groups contributed in their own way. But, I'm against making things up. An example of that is the new push to teach children that Muslims were involved in America from the first.

Well, yes, they were involved in early history - but I want to maintain my right to point out that, at that time, that included such things as the earliest use of Marines in a foreign war - against the Barbary Pirates. Other than that, nope, not until around the 20th century.

Does their lack of inclusion in early American History indicate that they aren't a part of America today?

No, any more than pointing out that no Asians signed the Declaration of Independence or Constitution. They just didn't have sufficient numbers here, at that time.

That's OK. LOTS of Americans are latecomers to the American Experience. Doesn't make them less of an American. Being here early doesn't make anyone more American.

What makes you an American is that you buy into those concepts of freedom, self-government, pursuit of happiness, and all that stuff. You can walk off the plane, learn about them, and say, "Yeah, I agree" - and become an American in your heart (and, eventually, in reality, once you fulfill all of those requirements of residency, learning about our culture and laws, and paperwork).

Try that in most of the world - can't be done. There, it's all about the bloodlines.

Here, we accept you, no matter what your color, religion, or accent.

Does that mean that EVERYONE will love you? No. A few will never accept you, or your kids.

But, for almost all of us, Ted Cruz, Bobby Jindal, or any other immigrant, and their descendants are Americans.


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