What we know about immigration law


We’ve been studying the uproar around the new immigration law enacted in the State of Arizona. We’re not sure whether the law is Constitutional or not: that is for Constitutional scholars and judges to decide. But we are convinced that we are witnessing what the author of Nineteen Eighty-four, George Orwell, coined “doublethink”:

“Winston sank his arms to his sides and slowly refilled his lungs with air. His mind slid away into the labyrinthine world of doublethink. To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them…” (Orwell, New American Library, 1981, p35)

From this book, written in 1949, arose the term “doublespeak,” the idea that “…’two’ contradictory concepts juxtaposed against each other…create deep confusion in the hearer for the purpose of producing inaction and apathy.”

Because, Orwell proposed, if you are frightened, inactive, and apathetic you are easier to control and manipulate by those who believe they are stronger, more intelligent, have better credentials, and thus, are superior to you. This is always how totalitarian regimes establish themselves. And history has shown it requires a mighty effort by citizens to overthrow them, if they ever succeed.

Wikipedia‘s entry for Nineteen Eighty-four explains that the “protagonist Winston Smith is a civil servant responsible for perpetuating the Party’s propaganda by revising historical records to render the Party omniscient and always correct, yet his meager existence disillusions him into rebellion against Big Brother, which leads to his arrest, torture, and conversion.”

At Common American Journal we are libertarian in our views. Government has no business running your life: you are responsible for yourself and your family. Charity is not a government function. But the government is meant to defend the borders and generally protect you from others who would harm you. Over time in America, and with our tacit approval, things have become miserably reversed: the government does not protect citizens from crimes perpetrated by those who enter the country without permission, but protect the criminal (“illegal”) immigrant instead.

Nor are we “haters” here: on this blog we are either naturalized citizens, or American-born citizens who also enjoy dual citizenship because our family members came–legally–to this good country. So Alinsky’s ‘Rules for Radicals‘ won’t work here.

Our “Wordboss” is a naturalized American, who emigrated to the U.S. from a socialist country in the late 1990s. The “Boss” carefully followed the rules to enter, work, and remain in the country. After eight years, finger-printing, rigorous medical exams checking for communicable diseases, and a great deal of money paid to the U.S. government, this immigrant was granted the honor of becoming an American in a very moving and joyful ceremony with hundreds of other immigrants that day.

Knowing the process the way we do, we are mystified at the uproar in America that anyone suspected of being in our country illegally might have to “show papers.” This is not new. When “Wordboss” arrived in America a visa was in their possession at all times. Later, the visa was exchanged for a “green card” and it is carried like one’s driver’s license. In the event that “Wordboss” was cited for any illegal activity–speeding while driving–the green card had to be readily available as proof of legal residency. We believe the government of our country has the right and the duty to know when foreigners are intermingling with citizens. In no other country can you just “invite” yourself in without meeting resistance from the authorities there. Mexico is just one example of a nation that does not condone such a porous, open-borders attitude by foreigners hoping to gain entry.

We believe in the exceptional individuals who make this nation great whether they were born here or not. We ask that those wishing to live and work here enter with respect for our national sovereignty. And we ask that our government try exerting as much control over the country’s immigration policies and borders as it now does over our children and their education, our healthcare, our employment, our finances, our property, and even our food and water, thermostats, and light bulbs.

At Common American Journal we are not ready or willing to become the new Winston Smiths.

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