Immigration is Not the Most Important Issue

I keep hearing that it’s “unconstitutional” to not let believers in Islam into the country.

I don’t understand. Since when did immigration become a constitutional right?

I’m not suggesting immigration is a bad thing. For an economically and politically free country, immigration is a great thing.

No rational, free people would ever wish to deny others the ability of entry. America was once an almost entirely rational, free place.

Now? Not so much.

Over time, America has become an entitlement state, a fiscally bankrupt and politically corrupt one; and our economy barely grows. Nothing like it once did.

Donald Trump would do well to focus more on deregulating and privatizing the economy, and less on immigration. It would get to the real causes of our problems.

In the era of (mostly) unhampered capitalism, after the Civil War and before World War I, the rich got richer and the poor got richer. Innovation reigned. The standard of living improved dramatically.

Today, it’s different. The rich usually stay rich; the middle class shrinks; and the poor grow in numbers as the government stretches its arm of dependence with an unimaginably high national debt.

In such a restricted, confusing and dysfunctional environment, people naturally become less trusting, less welcoming, less generous.

But even if we were still an entirely free country, does this make entry into the country an automatic right?

It seems that way. Because it seems that everyone from Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to Jeb Bush and Dick Cheney believe that immigration is an automatic right, something the United States has a moral obligation to grant, on principle and almost unconditionally.

They might deny this assumption in other contexts. But when blasting Donald Trump, they sure all seem to think this way.

Granted, these same Republicans say we should not allow entry in the case of Syrian refugees. Why restrict or deny entry to Syrian refugees based on religion, while granting it to anyone else who’s Muslim? No answer.

At least the Democrats and progressives are consistent. They want absolute and unconditional entry for everyone. In fact, to hear them talk, you’d think they prefer letting in people from high risk zones where Islamic totalitarianism and ideology flourish. It’s almost as if they want terrorists in America, so they can prove their politically correct credentials. Or, who knows: Maybe, deep down, they hate America and are kind of on the side of its destroyers, in a subconscious and twisted way.

Another thing I don’t understand: Not letting Muslims into the United States, some say, is a violation of their “religious freedom.”

“Freedom of religion is a fundamental constitutional principle. It’s a founding principle of this country,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said to reporters after emerging from a closed-door meeting with the Republican National Committee.

But what does “religious freedom” mean?

To an Amish person, or to a Hasidic Jew, religious freedom means simply to be left alone. To a socially conservative Catholic or Baptist, religious freedom means being left alone, but also outlawing abortion, stem-cell research and gay marriage. To a militant Muslim—the only kind who ever speaks up, it seems—religious freedom means the right to impose totalitarian Sharia law on everyone…or else off with their heads!

Religious freedom clearly means different things to different people. That’s why it cannot be a standard of law.

Paul Ryan speaks as if denying someone entry to the United States because they may hold an ideological view that requires homicidal martyrdom is a self-evident denial of their “religious freedom.” How so?

The only proper or conceivable standard of law is individual rights. This means nobody gets to initiate force against anyone. Ever.

It’s a simple and seemingly unreachable standard. But America, early in its history, and particularly after outlawing slavery, came close to that standard. Damn close.

I’m not convinced that any single candidate understands this – nor even cares. That’s what makes me so afraid for our future, and even for our present.

America needs to wake up; and fast.

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