June 17, 2010
What the Illegal Alien Lobby Says Versus What They Really Mean
The illegal alien special interests are working overtime making their last ditch pitch for amnesty before mid-terms elections, robotically reciting how they want to "fix" our immigration problems. In today's media spin-cycle, consistency counts, repetition rules and the illegal alien lobby is true to form, all working from the same playbook, line by line, word for word. Whether it's the National Council for LaRaza, the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund, or America's Voice arguing for amnesty, you can rest assured that they will use any one, or any combination of, the phrases below:
"We need to fix our broken immigration system. We need a path to citizenship for undocumented workers so they can go to the back of the line, get right with the law, and implement an orderly flow of needed workers, and a policy which secures the borders."
For those in the know, of course, it's all nonsense — word play and empty promises. Fortunately, the code words can be deciphered and their true motives revealed with a minimal of effort:
Fix A Broken System: On its surface this sounds good, urgent and necessary, but as Plato said, "Everything that deceives is said to enchant." Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has been leading the amnesty lobby by repeating the phrase "we must fix a broken immigration system" and "we need 21st century laws." When they say the system is broken they actually mean illegal aliens face deportation, and that America is not admitting enough legal immigrants fast enough. The fact is illegal aliens aren't supposed to be in the United States — by definition they do not have legal status. As regards our level of legal immigration, America currently allows in more than one million people a year, more than any other industrialized country on the planet.
The bottom line is that the only thing broken about our immigration system is an unwillingness to impose sensible limitations and enforce the laws. Truth in labeling might suggest that their version of "fixing a broken system" should be read as "making a broken system worse."
Path to Citizenship: Euphemisms for amnesty wear thin quickly so the new phrase "path to citizenship" and "earned legalization" has also entered the lexicon. We already have a "path to citizenship" and it starts with applying for a green card and getting in line. "Earned legalization" is kind of crafty. It implies that as long as illegal aliens actually have to do something, no matter how inconsequential like paying a modest fine, it is not really amnesty. Beware of both phrases. Substitute the word "amnesty" and remind yourself it applies to 13 million illegal aliens and the context and consequences become abundantly clear.
Go to the Back of the Line:To most people, going to the back of the line would mean returning home, visiting the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate, filling out the necessary forms, and then waiting for a reply. What amnesty advocates mean by going to the back of the line is that we create a brand new line for those who have broken the law right here in this country.
Get Right with the Law:This beguiling phrase is meant to imply that that amnesty recipients will follow the rule of law. If illegal aliens have already broken the law, what assurance do we have they will follow the law now? This phrase also suggests that administratively converting 13 million people from illegal status to legal status "gets them right with the law." Accommodating law-breaking by simply rewriting the rules to fit the circumstances is one of the most insidious aspects of amnesty.
Undocumented Workers: Given the huge sums of money the special interests have, one would assume their high-paid consultants would have told them that this euphemism expired years ago. We all know it means illegal aliens, but amnesty advocates believe that using the adjective "undocumented" magically erases the illegality, while claiming they are "workers" suggests all are gainfully employed, which they're often not. And very few who do work pay taxes. The proper reference is "illegal aliens." "Illegal" means prohibited by law. Yes, entry without inspection into the U.S is prohibited. And "alien" is a term defined in 8 U.S.C. Section 1101 and used by legal professionals across the board including the United States Supreme Court. It's ok to say illegal aliens. You'll be in good company.
Orderly Flow of Workers: This is a phrase that by its own definition assumes we actually need more workers. It refers to our foreign guest worker program. In addition to the 1.2 million legal immigrants the U.S. admits each year, and the 13 million illegal aliens currently living here, the U.S. also brings in another one million foreign nationals through work visas year after year. With a national unemployment rate of 9.9 percent and 25 million Americans either unemployed or working part-time involuntarily, any endorsement of our massive foreign guest worker flow, or a suggestion that we should increase it, should be challenged on the grounds that it is imposing unfair competition for scarce jobs. Instead of "orderly flow of workers" the proper translation is "more foreign labor to take your job."
Secure the Border: They save the biggest and boldest claim for last. Amnesty advocates promise to secure the border for no other reason than to make their plans for massive amnesty more palatable. The special interests don't mean it and they don't want to do it. After all, they have stymied every single piece of immigration enforcement legislation in recent years and relentlessly pressured the Obama administration to systematically dismantle most existing immigration enforcement. But, they remember all too well that the amnesty bill of 2007 was shot down because Americans could see that the borders were not secure and that meaningful interior enforcement was nonexistent. The amnesty lobby may remember 2007, but we remember 1986 when, in exchange for roughly 3 million illegal aliens getting their amnesty, the American public was promised more enforcement. That grand bargain rewarded illegal aliens with citizenship while the American public got squat. Promised enforcement was simply a deceitful bargaining chip to advance an amnesty agenda. Their repeated claim that they want to secure the border rings hollow given their record of working against it.
There is immigration enforcement and then there is amnesty. One has nothing to do with the other and true immigration reformers know this. Revealing the motives of the illegal alien lobby is an ongoing responsibility because as Burke said, "a very great part of the mischiefs that vex this world arise from words."