There is no shortage of stories about crooks who prey on unsuspecting homeowners by swindling these hapless victims out of their money without delivering the repairs they promise. Sometimes home improvement contractors begin repairs that exacerbate the original problems. In other instances they simply take the deposit they demand in advance of beginning work and disappear.
Metaphorically, America is our home as is repeatedly noted in the beautiful song, “God Bless America.” Our nation has certainly fallen into disrepair.
Much of our infrastructure is crumbling. Tens of millions of Americans have given up looking for work, wages of most American workers has stagnated while costs have gone up. Heroin addiction is at an all time high and the threat of terror attacks looms on the horizon.
The candidates for the presidency are not unlike the home improvement contractors who seek to get the homeowner’s signature on the bottom of a contract and on receiving the check that they will demand, before they even begin work.
Political candidates seek our campaign contributions and our votes. Not unlike the homeowner who hires a contractor hoping he will fulfill his promises, we vote for candidates hoping that they will keep their promises.
For most Americans, their homes are the most valuable possession they own. It is central to their lives.
The well being of the United States is the most important issue for all Americans. It is also central to their lives and the lives of their children.
The multiple failures of the immigration system must be effectively addressed if we are to get our “nation’s house” in order. It impacts nearly every challenge and threat and therefore the solution to fixing the broken immigration system must insure national security, the equivalent of the foundation of a building. This system must function effectively to protect the safety and wellbeing of our nation and our citizens.
Any candidate who says that the “fix” for the immigration system is to provide lawful status to millions of illegal aliens, possibly a multiple of the 12 million we continually hear about, who trespassed on our nation and entered surreptitiously is either a fool or a liar. Either way, any candidate who claims that this is the way to address the failings of the immigration system should immediately be considered unsuitable.
From a national security standpoint, there would be no way to interview these millions of illegal aliens and no way to conduct field investigations to make certain that they are not lying on their applications.
It wouldn’t just make it easier for terrorists and criminals to game the system, enabling aliens to conceal material facts such as their true identities and backgrounds and falsely claim to have entered the United States within a specified required time frame. The amnesty enacted during the Reagan administration was supposed to involve just about one million illegal aliens. Ultimately more than 3.5 million gained lawful status. There was no way of knowing if this was attributable to a humongous miscalculation of the actual numbers present or if many of them simply entered after the law was enacted and lied about when, where, and how they entered the United States.
Furthermore, immigration fraud was identified by the 9/11 Commission (to which I provided testimony) as a major vulnerability to national security — a vulnerability exploited by the majority of terrorists the Commission studied, finding a clear nexus between multiple failures of the immigration system and the ability of terrorists to enter the United States and embed themselves as they went about their deadly preparations.
Consider this excerpt from Chapter 12 of the 9/11 Commission Report:
Before 9/11, no agency of the U.S. government systematically analyzed terrorists’ travel strategies. Had they done so, they could have discovered the ways in which the terrorist predecessors to al Qaeda had been systematically but detectably exploiting weaknesses in our border security since the early 1990s.
“…We also found that had the immigration system set a higher bar for determining whether individuals are who or what they claim to be-and ensuring routine consequences for violations-it could potentially have excluded, removed, or come into further contact with several hijackers who did not appear to meet the terms for admitting short-term visitors.33
Our investigation showed that two systemic weaknesses came together in our border system’s inability to contribute to an effective defense against the 9/11 attacks: a lack of well-developed counterterrorism measures as a part of border security and an immigration system not able to deliver on its basic commitments, much less support counterterrorism. These weaknesses have been reduced but are far from being overcome.
That report was published roughly a dozen years ago. Under the Obama administration the effective enforcement of our immigration laws has ended. Our borders offer scant protection against smugglers — this is easily demonstrated by considering the fact that heroin has never been in greater demand yet the price of heroin has never been lower.
From a criminal standpoint, aliens who evade the inspections process at ports of entry know that they belong to one of more categories of excludible aliens. These grounds for exclusion can be found in Title 8 U.S. Code § 1182 – Inadmissible aliens, and includes aliens with dangerous communicable diseases, who suffer extreme mental illness and are prone to violence or are sex offenders, criminals, fugitives from justice, are gang members, spies, or terrorists or would likely become a public charge or are likely to seek unlawful employment.
Economically, providing illegal aliens with lawful status will give them at least an equal standing in the labor pool of beleaguered American and lawful immigrant workers and lead to wage suppression for all workers as the labor pool continued to overflow. Open borders advocates and some of the candidates as well as many of the candidates invoke the issue of compassion to justify a massive legalization program. How is America showing compassion for its own citizens by failing to enforce our immigration laws?
Additionally, if the United States provided tens of millions of illegal aliens with lawful status, many will seek to bring their wives and their children into the United States. Immediately the number of aliens we could be dealing with would skyrocket. Additionally, once these aliens acquire lawful status might seek to become citizens — whereupon they could legally apply to have their parents and all of their siblings and their siblings’ nuclear families granted lawful immigration status. In many Third World countries it is not unusual for families to have large numbers of children.
As a thought — while it is reasonable for a U.S. citizen to be able to petition to have his or her spouses and children legally immigrate along with his parents, as is currently the case, there is no reason that adult siblings and their nuclear family should be given green cards as is currently permitted.
Any massive program that would provide lawful status for unknown millions of illegal aliens would set off an immigration chain reaction that would be nothing short of catastrophic for the United States.
Politicians who claim that our nation has a shortage of high-tech STEM professionals should talk to the tens of thousands of American programmers and other highly talented and experienced professionals and ask them about how they were fired and all too often, required to train their foreign worker replacements if wanted to receive their severance packages.
They should speak with the tens of thousands of American college graduates who are encumbered by huge student loans and although they have the necessary education and degrees are unable to secure a job for which they trained. Alternatively, they could speak with Senator Jeff Sessions who has been extremely vocal on this issue.
A final thought — one of the key arguments for getting the illegal aliens out of the “shadows” is that we will finally know who they are and this will make America safer. I previously noted how the lack of ability to determine the true identities of these aliens would create a massive national security problem. There is another issue and one never discussed — the abject lack of available resources to hunt down the illegal aliens who pose a threat to national security or public safety and know that they are the subject of criminal arrest warrants in the United States or abroad and would not voluntarily come forward. In that deadly game of “hide and seek” — they would continue to hide and no one would seek them.
Any “home improvement plan” for America that includes increasing the number of visas for foreign high-tech workers and/or a massive legalization program for potentially tens of millions of illegal aliens would lead to nothing short of a building collapse on a national scale!