Republished from 2012

tipologia paso grande 1 trump wallWith President Donald Trump  and Congress moving forward on promises to Build That Wall, here are four crucial facts that Republicans and conservatives must keep in mind.

First, the reason so many immigrants come to this country illegally, especially from Mexico and Latin America, is that the federal government has failed for decades to provide an easy means for legal entry for those who want to come here to work.

Second, minor children were not responsible for their parents’ choice to bring them here illegally. Do those kids—many now adults with their own children—deserve to be penalized, their families broken up?

Third, the choice of most immigrants to come here illegally was morally right and should be applauded. In most cases, poor Latinos face two choices: 1) Stay in their own countries, wallowing in poverty, watching their families suffer, with little opportunity for prosperous, happy lives; or 2) Seek the best life possible for themselves and their loved ones by entering the United States illegally.

Poverty and lack of education and political connections make it impossible for many to secure legal permission to come to America. It would be morally contemptible self-sacrifice for such individuals to wait passively for years until bureaucracies give them the right pieces of legal paper. Sneaking across the border breaks an American law. But illegals don’t limit the liberty of others when they come here to offer their labor with willing employers.

Fourth, in the same circumstances as most illegals, most Republicans and conservatives would do exactly the same thing! In the spirit of America, they’d say, “To hell with idiot America lawmakers and paper-pushers. I’m coming here to make money!”

Yes, welfare state transfers muddy the issue. Yes, there’s a lot to sort out concerning those who have been here for decades. But Republicans and conservatives should get beyond denouncing “amnesty” and seek ways to welcome those who want to come here and stay in this country that was, after all, founded by immigrants.

Edward Hudgins

About The Author:

Edward Hudgins is research director at the Heartland Institute and former director of advocacy and senior scholar at The Atlas Society.

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