Monday, May 25, 2009

Abortion, Immigration Reform and the Rule of Law

I had an interesting conversation with a group of friends last evening. Two were Republicans. Two were Democrats. Two were non-partisans. The subject of Abortion came up. The two Republicans were strongly against abortion. They said they did not believe in abortion and wanted it outlawed. I said I too did not believe in abortion and throughout my life never had an abortion. Everyone around the table nodded and agreed to the same. However, I did support a woman having the ability to make her own choices. The non-partisans agreed. The Republicans did not. They said they thought it was murder, from the time of conception. I asked, "What about rape. Do you think a woman should have a choice if she becomes pregnant after she is raped? I cannot and will not mandate a woman's decision for her, a decision she makes based on her own circumstances." One Republican faltered saying, "I still don't believe in it." My second Democrat said, "Listen to what she is saying. You don't have to believe in it for you, but you just can't restrict other people's choices." The table started nodding. Then the second Republican said, "But I still don't believe in it. I believe in the rule of law." I responded, "But it is the rule of law." Republican response, "It is the rule of law today, but the law should be changed."

I smiled to myself. We went back to playing cards. In my mind I thought about all of the groups that protest against abortion, in front of clinics, at doctors' offices, in cities across the nation. Most say they are strong, Christian Conservatives. A few extremists in their group advocate violence against the doctors and workers within the clinics. They all have their reasons for opposing the current law, yet they say they support the rule of law.

Then I thought about Immigration. How many of us PROs believe in the rule of law, yet, as the Republican/Conservatives believe(about abortion) we who support Comprehensive Immigration Reform believe the current immigration laws are "the rule of law today, but the law should be changed."

Prior to my card night trip, I read a great article by my friend Marisa on Latina Lista. The article is titled: Princeton sociologist proves federal government responsible for high undocumented population Dr. Douglas Massey is a renowned Sociologist who spoke before Congress about the history of Immigration into the U.S. over the last 27 years.

In a nutshell, the professor said that due to the strict enforcement of the Mexican border from 1986 forward, the billions spent by the U.S. in enforcement measures, the risks and the costs became higher for border crossing. Therefore, there has been a steep decline in return migration and not an increase in entry from Mexico. This has resulted in the undocumented population ballooning during the 1990s and made Hispanics the nation’s largest minority a decade before demographers had predicted. If return migration to Mexico had remained at it’s pre 1986 levels, we would have had nearly 2 million fewer undocumented Mexicans settling between 1980 and 2005. In other words, those here were too afraid to go back and hunkered down and stayed. This is the reason Mexico dwarfs all other countries as a contributor to the unauthorized population.

The Professor closes with this summary:
These data clearly indicate that Mexican immigration is not and has never been out of control. It rises and falls with labor demand and if legitimate avenues for entry are available, migrants enter legally. The massive militarization of the border and resumption of mass deportations occurred despite the fact that rates of undocumented migration were falling and the perverse consequence was that these actions lowered the rate of return migration among those already here.
To solve our serious immigration problems, we need to undertake a program of legalization for those already resident in the country, and especially for the more than three million people who entered the country as minors and are guilty of no sin except obeying their parents. We also need to provide for the legal entry of Mexicans by increasing the number of permanent resident visas and guest worker permits to levels consistent with the needs of an integrated North American economy.
Unfortunately the current immigration crisis is very much one of our own making, reflecting bad policy choices in the past; but fortunately this means that with better policy choices we have the power to resolve the dilemma moving forward.
Given Dr. Massey's historical summary and the recommendations for Comprehensive Immigration Reform, it is logical that Congress proceeds with his recommendations. It is clear the current laws should be changed and updated to support legalization of those here and correct any bad policy currently in existence.


ultima said...

Professor Massey wrote "These data clearly indicate that Mexican immigration is not and has never been out of control." He doesn't say what criteria he used to reach this unwarranted conclusion. Without such criteria anyone could say it is or is not out of control. No doubt there is a certain amount of ebb and flow as economic conditions dictate. However, I believe that the explosion in the number of illegal aliens since the 1986 amnesty, ballooning from 1-2 million to 12-20 million, is prima facie evidence that illegal immigration is out of control. Neolib sociologists are the last ones I would ask to make a judgment about this. Professor Massey could well spend some time reviewing this video and thinking about the long term consequences of illegal aliens and the current levels of legal immigration before he tries to foist his sociological propaganda on us.

I would welcome immigration reform that would make it easier for illegals to return to their homelands. Frankly, I don't know why any U.S. Border Patrol agent want to take on this extra workload. If illegal entry is considered a minor offense, than surely returning to one's homeland is an even lesser one.

ultima said...

Dee wrote, "However, I did support a woman having the ability to make her own choices."

How does your priest feel about your position? Must you confess to holding this view every week?

I am a Republican and have no religious conflicts of conscience. I believe in choice moderated by a heavy dose of education and the ready availability of tubal ligations and vasectomies at nominal cost. Abortion should never be the birth control method of choice.

ultima said...

Dee wrote, "Then I thought about Immigration. How many of us PROs believe in the rule of law, yet, as the Republican/Conservatives believe(about abortion) we who support Comprehensive Immigration Reform believe the current immigration laws are "the rule of law today, but the law should be changed."

Roe v. Wade will never be changed nor should it be but more should be done to relieve the necessity for unlimited abortions. Everyone who feels otherwise should be required to witness two or three abortions, especially the late term variety. I agree with Obama on this -- we should be looking for some middle ground along the lines I have suggested -- education, freely available tubal ligations and vasectomies.

Most American citizens are living by the law as they advocate otherwise, if they do. Unfortunately, the anti-america, pro-illegals can't being themselves to do that. They continue to advocate for the illegals in spite of the law. Some even go so far as to violate the law themselves by aiding and abetting the illegals. I see a significant difference here.

If the video makes no other point, it is clear that cultures and civilizations can be destroyed by shortsighted immigration policies. All Americans might want to give a little more thought to that when they think about criticizing those of us who oppose illegal immigration and excessive legal immigration. Except to shallow minds, it should be clear that there is a very serious point here and that it has nothing to do with racism -- El Duque's favorite word.

Dee said...

How does my priest feel about my views? I do not know and probably never will. As I child I attended Catholic Mass every Sunday.I was educated in Catholic schools. I thank them and my parents for instilling Humanity and Compassion into my thoughts and deeds.

As an adult I do not attend Mass on a regular basis although I am grateful for their teachings. Through their teachings I know God created us with Free Will. As an adult, I formed my thoughts and ideas based on certain core beliefs. As an adult I believe in not restricting a Woman's Choice. My choice was never to have an abortion. My choice is also to never restrict another person's lawful freedom of choice.

However, I do agree with you. Every effort should be made to utilize birth control methods, especially condoms. I also agree with tubal ligations and vasectomies although the Catholic Church does not.

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