Amnesty! Ouch, it hurts to say it. 12 million people who didn’t follow the rules are now allowed in this country and English is a second language. The borders are still open and border agents are still being overwhelmed. How did we let it get this far? Oh yeah, we did NOTHING!
That is how the current debate is going in Washington and around the country. It seems we are damned if we do and damned if we don’t! Locally, Mayor Lou from Hazelton,PA has tried to do something but he was called a racist because he must have been talking only about 1 ethnic group. Better yet, he was told it wasn’t his territory to enforce or enact immigration standards. Nationally, Bush has tried, McCain has tried(together w/ Dems) but still we are facing a huge crisis because no one can agree. Eventually, we will have to face facts, 12 million people cannot be shipped on planes,trains or automobiles back to their homeland. Eventually,some sort of amnesty deal will have to happen. But it does not have to be a horrible thing, it can be good for America. How?
First, we close the borders before amnesty takes place. We have to do this no matter what or any plan will fail. Follow the legal paths to get in and a WELCOME TO THE USA sign will greet you upon entry. Stop the backwards argument about “what about the people following legal paths now? “. That’s an appeasement argument made to get votes. Legal paths exist and should be enforced starting today. When the borders are closed there is no argument about how you come to the United States.
Second, it can unite Americans to finally embrace English as a national language. A debate a couple hundred years in the making, we can but aside our idiotic convictions that people lose who they are when they lose their language. Families will still practice their cultural traditions but Americans can finally stop buying T-shirts that say “Why the hell should I press 1 for English?” and alienating whole segments of the population we pass on the street.
Third, Americans can once again celebrate their patriotism without being called a racist. There was a time when if you entered the country you had to know the Pledge of Allegiance and a rudimentary history of the USA. Now we live in a time when practicing patriotism is equivalent to racism. America can only survive as long as its people know her history and practices. July 4 is a pretty important date here in the states. May 5, not so much. Flying the flag should be the rule not the exception. And go ahead fly the Italian,Mexican, German, etc.. flag too, just under the American flag because we should be Americans first, nationalists second.
Fourth, Americans will be able to embrace the future without a sense of dread. America was built on an idea, that’s it, nothing more. The founders and settlers of America moved forward with this idea through all challenges because they embraced what was ahead. They had their debates and they moved on with their lives with a clear purpose and one national goal. To be sure there were times when this didn’t work out so well and times when the debate was swept under the rug for a later generation (IE the Civil War can be traced back to inaction on the issue of slavery by the founders). But for the most part the idea that America would only last if we worked together as one nation united, trumped all other ideas about individuality in the sea of diversity that America promised. Today, there seems to be no sense of future because we mired in debates about who belongs and who doesn’t. What is right and what is wrong. Who will we offend and who will we appease. The future will come, we can’t stop it. How we look forward to the future largely determines its outcome.
As Americans we only need to focus on something and we can do it as a nation. Amnesty may not seem the best solution, but if we do it correctly, America can become stronger at home and abroad.