Thursday, January 10, 2019

Your Position Is Not Reasonable Just Because You Don't Shout (The Wall Is Immoral)

Admittedly, I'm in a mode where I'm simply expecting you to defend whatever you've already decided is true. And since the erstwhile defenders of immigrants in the Catholic Church are, for example, Fr. Martin and abortion-lovers, it's fairly easy to justify supporting Trump and his wall. As a syllogism, it goes like this:

I'm a good person;
I voted for Trump;
Therefore, Trump is a good person, too. (At least better than the Left)

Any sort of plausibly compassionate reason (like keeping out drug-dealers and killers) seemingly justifies the separation of families, the flagrant disruption of the asylum process, (in violation of international law) and the shutdown, which makes every one of these problems worse.

Meanwhile, what do we actually owe in justice to the people coming to our borders? It would seem that Catholics of a certain political persuasion think we owe them nothing at all. We can hurt them, even kill them, because they don't belong here, or so it goes. Or someone will say, "Don't you care about your own people?" Yes. "You just think we shouldn't have borders!" No. I don't think people become non-people when they commit a misdemeanor. Heck, I don't even think murderers become non-people! Aren't we Christians? We say anyone can receive mercy. Unless you're an illegal immigrant, it seems.

Most of the asylum-seekers are from Central America. The US involvement in Honduras actually helped cause the instability there. That should factor into the US response, one would think.

I might remind you that 2 children have died in custody of US border agents. Of dehydration. At what point are we defending immoral abstractions and twisted analogies? I'd say this is that point.

And speaking also as a political scientist and observer, you're not going to outlast Chuck Schumer. There's no leverage. Trump created the shutdown, took the responsibility, and, if this were a poker hand, he's holding nothing. As per usual.

My bottom line, in terms of principle here: One cannot justly impose conditions of "respect" for the US that the harried immigrant can't possibly meet before he settles here. You can't say, "Don't come here."

I have no idea if President Obama was being genuine in 2014, when he gave a speech on immigration. I watched that, instead of Trump. I'd have to say, I'd have taken that deal. Tortured analogies are apparently preferred to solving problems. You don't need to ask me if I lock my door.

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