Sunday, March 26, 2006

Mass Protests supporting illegal entry

Over the past few days there have been protests regarding new immigration laws, specifically one that would make it felony to illegally enter this country. Some of those protests have seen support numbering in the thousands. My take on it?

Big deal. So what?

First off, just what are these people protesting? The law at the heart of the protests and demands does not make a new classification of crime. It does not, as is constantly cited by so-called “immigrants rights” groups, “criminalize” immigration. There is nothing in the law that makes something that’s legal today illegal tomorrow. What it does is raise the classification on an existing crime to a felony level, permitting the application of law enforcement assets that currently cannot act upon the crime. And that, really, is what the protests are all about. It’s not that any of those people (who have bothered to educate themselves on the matter) are suggesting that illegal entry isn’t or shouldn’t be a crime. It’s that they understand very well that the current classification allows for a rather anemic law enforcement response. Raising it to a felony would put a more serious law enforcement threat onto their radar screens and they want to re-frame this debate so as to hide that essential fact.

Protests organized to keep our nation from effectively enforcing our laws do not impress me much. My stance on illegal entry and immigration - and those are 2 very separate and distinct concepts - are well documented right here on this blog. I approve of the latter when it’s done legally and I disapprove of the former with no reservations. All the sign-carrying in the world won’t change that. If these thousands of people want to make sure that neither they nor anyone they know run afoul of our immigrations law, then they would be better off putting down the signs and helping themselves and others out in complying with the law.