Immigration

This is neither astronomy nor Catholicism, but being the grandson of (Polish) immigrants – my father’s mother and father came over, literally, on the boat, separately – the issues and events of the past week have struck home with me.

In general, I am as pro-immigration as I can be, and I think it is true that immigrants of all nationalities have served to constantly revitilize this nation. They have constantly kept this nation productive, strong and innovative even as they struggle to assimilate.

I fully recognize that this has never been an easy or even rewarding task for the immigrants themselves. My grandfather toiled in the steel mills and my grandmother in the vegetable garden so that their sons could thrive here, and their daughters marry and have families of their own. Several of those sons served in the military, one died in Korea, and one, my father, went to college. The sisters lived to become great grandmothers themselves, and so proved that my grandparents toil was not in vain, for the family survives.

But the key to this all was their willingness, their desire, to assimilate. And even then, success (however it’s defined) doesn’t come for generation and it’s never truly guarenteed.

Victor Davis Hansen writes:

[T]here is still a solution to the immigration problem: It involves supporting any practice that leads to the assimilation of legal Mexican immigrants into the American mainstream – and opposing everything that does not.

And I agree. There isn’t much desire to assimilate being demonstrated when Mexican flags are being waved in the streets of L.A. We may very well need to reexamine and liberalize our laws concerning immigrants from Mexico, and it’s probably to our advantage to do so (um… are we listening, Congress? Anyone home???). But we cannot tolerate illegals who are both prone to being abused (by unscrupulous employers) and to abuse others (MS-13 is not a small problem in this area). I don’t see much desire to assimilate when Mexican flags are being waved in the streets of L.A.

We must treat those who are here fairly, as we are supposed to in our Judeo-Christian tradition. That does not include condoning, promoting or abetting illegal activities.

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