Guest Opinion Editorial by Douglas A. Solomon
President Trump won a partial victory when the Supreme Court reinstated some of his travel ban barring travel from nations with high jihadist activity.
The court made the right decision. The Constitution does NOT grant ANY right to foreigners to either visit or immigrate here.
And as Daniel Horowitz details in Conservative Review, the Supreme Court itself has said it has no jurisdiction over executive or legislative action in the area of immigration.
Any infringement by the judicial branch undermines American sovereignty by granting foreigners veto power over the consent of the people as expressed by their elected representatives.
Open borders and amnesty supporters decry any attempt to secure the border or enforce our immigration laws as “racist” and a betrayal of our heritage of welcoming “the huddled masses yearning to be free” as embodied by the Statue of Liberty.
The left trots out the time-worn truism that we are a “nation of immigrants” who have contributed to America the wonderful gift of “diversity.”
It is true we have a rich history of welcoming successive waves of immigrants from different lands to our shores.
But as Horowitz Freedom Center Shillman Fellow Bruce Thornton details in “Immigration Without Assimilation: A Toxic Brew,” the left “seldom acknowledge[s] that in the past these differences led to conflict and strife…that the ‘diversity’ championed as wholly positive in reality includes cultural traits and behaviors that are inimical to the American political and social order.”
The left also fails to acknowledge the role immigration’s kissing cousin – assimilation – plays in ensuring American unity.
Past immigrants were required to adapt themselves to American society by adopting American principles and ideals as embodied in our founding documents as well as learning the language they were written in.
The left has discarded the concept of assimilation in favor of “multiculturalism” by such measures as providing government services in multiple languages (Bergen County, N.J., currently provides sample ballots in THREE languages).
And furthermore, according to Thornton, immigrants are now “encouraged to celebrate and prefer the cultures from whose failures and injustices they have fled to the one that has given them greater freedom and opportunity.”
Open borders advocates consider assimilation as “ethnocide” as Thornton puts, it but they miss “the significance of the ‘melting pot’ metaphor.
When copper and tin are fused together to make bronze neither metal disappears, but together create something new that partakes of the qualities of each metal.”
Assimilation doesn’t mean immigrants have to completely discard their native culture, just whatever conflicts with American principles, as well as accept the primacy of American culture in mainstream society.
Assimilation is vital for the continuation of America because, as Thornton says, “a coherent national identity requires a unifying common culture of political principles, virtues, traditions and ideals that in the public square trump all others… without that sense of a common identity, it becomes more difficult to band together to fight the nation’s enemies….As history teaches us, no amount of wealth or military power can substitute for lost national cohesion and morale.”
While we have a noble tradition of welcoming immigrants, a tradition is not equivalent to a law. The Statue of Liberty does not have the force of law. The Constitution does.
As President Clinton stated in his 1995 State of the Union speech, “We are a nation of immigrants, but we are also a nation of laws” and that to reward those who have violated those laws over those who have come here legally is unfair.
The open borders lobby relishes in telling us the original settlers from Europe were “illegal immigrants” in the eyes of the natives.
So what specific immigration statutes were they violating? Since there were no statutes to violate, the settlers could not be considered illegal. And the point is moot now anyway. We cannot base our sovereignty or security on what happened 400 years ago.
Our hospitality does not obligate us to accept anyone and everyone, particularly those who believe where they came from is better than where they came to or those who believe it is their divine duty to wage war on us. (Just because a person is hospitable does not mean they have to open the door to someone who knocks at 2 in the morning.)
Our tradition does not in any way abridge our complete and total right as a sovereign nation to set the parameters of who may come and when.
Any abridgment of that right is a betrayal of the consent of the governed and of the government’s obligation to protect its citizens.
Ironically the same people who tout our history of immigration simultaneously scorn the notion of American exceptionalism.
But what other nation has the history the United States does in welcoming people from other lands and successfully integrating them into American society? And with respect to refugees why does the responsibility fall primarily to the United States (and Europe) to accept them?
Douglas A. Solomon is a free-lance writer living in northern New Jersey. He has a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in political science.