Americans Are Dreamers Too

Americans on the political Left in America are very concerned for the dreams of people who have come to America illegally. They are especially concerned for the dreams of those who were smuggled into America illegally as children. They have a special name for them, they call them “Dreamers.”

It is truly sad for these people who were brought to America very young and who grew up in America. Most probably have considerably less ties to their parent’s native country than their parents. They were too  young for me to consider them criminals, but someone who brought them was a criminal, a person who deliberately broke U.S. law to be here.

I use the word “illegal” because I want to stress that at the root of this problem there is always a crime.

Those on the Left would like to abolish the laws that make it a crime to enter the U.S. at will without any control. They would like to abolish ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). They would like for it to be legal for anyone who can get to the U.S. border to cross over into the U.S. without any checks on their health, criminal background, or likely ability to be employed and not become an immediate burden on U.S. taxpayers.

What would be the likely consequences of enacting “open borders,” allowing anyone who wanted to come to America and could somehow manage to get here? What would be the  consequences to  the dreams of all the Americans and their children, who are already here legally?

Let’s do a little math. The population density of Mexico City is calculated to be 15,600 people per square mile. If you have ever been to Mexico City you might have noticed that a large part of it is a literal slum compared to the standards many Americans are used to.

Mexico City
Mexico City, high rise buildings, freeways, and slums. Is this the future of America?

According to the U.S. Census Bureau 62.7% of the U.S. population lives in cities on 3.5% of the land in the U.S. That 3.5% comes to about 123,616 square miles so the calculated average population density in those cities is 1,657 persons per square mile. It is considerably higher in some of the larger cities and less so in smaller cities, but that is the overall average. It a heck of a lot less than 15,600 per square mile in Mexico City.

Considering that the vast majority of people who will come to America legally, or illegally will live in those cities, how many people would need to come to America to make our cities like Mexico City in the picture above? According to my calculations a little over 500 million.

What would the political consequences be if that many poor and downtrodden people came to America? Obviously the  Democratic Party would have an enormous advantage. All these people would need to be on many forms of assistance, perhaps for a long time. They would look to the Democrats to guarantee that and the elite of the Democratic Party would be glad to accommodate them. A few Republicans might get elected in the hinterlands but they would be as powerless as Republicans are currently in California (only less so).

The real motivation of the elite politicians is political power. Period. How you live (in “flyover country”) is of little importance to them. As long as they can be at the top of the heap as elected politicians they don’t really care how those on the bottom of the heap live.

Want proof of that? Look at cities like Detroit and Chicago in the U.S. that have been run by Democratic politicians for generations. Look at the crime and poverty in the inner cities run by Democrats. Look at the lives of black Americans living in those inner cities and still voting Democratic.

Do I think 500 million immigrants are likely? I have no idea but we do know that many millions have come to America illegally facing many real hazards including Mexican criminals  and the harsh and dangerous landscapes of the southwest border where more than a few have died. The Border Patrol find their bodies all the time.

So what if we now advertise you can walk in openly and legally and probably get immediate government assistance? 500 million people is about 6.5% of the world’s total population. How many poor people around the world would sell everything they own to come here if they could, and especially if they were guaranteed assistance and benefits when they arrived?

But even if not 500 million, what would 50 million or 100 million or 200 million do? At some point there would be enough to guarantee the Democrats could run things into the ground all over America the same way they have run cities like Detroit into the ground. How many remember that Ronald Reagan was a Republican governor of California at one time? That is one state that clearly shows what millions of illegal immigrants can do to change the political landscape.

So how about the dreams of Americans then? How about American Dreamers that would like to go to college and have the good life? The Democrats would probably want more “diversity” in American colleges so a lot more kids from immigrant backgrounds would almost certainly be getting more of those slots for higher education. Democrats would be telling your kids they ought to “check their privilege” when they don’t get into a good college, or maybe any college.

Are you willing to give up your dreams, and your children’s dreams to all the Dreamers in the world who would like to come here and start reaping all the benefits (many that you will have to pay for in taxes)?

Think on it. Is it too selfish to want our kids to have a chance for their dreams, the American Dreamers? As Americans we need to push our politicians hard to solve the problems with illegal immigration. If not our children will often be dreaming in vain.

We may not send all these kids back who were brought to America illegally but we really need to turn off the spigot of continued illegal immigration. The future of American Dreamers depends on it.

 

Universal Background Checks Revisited

I am a long time NRA member and I would support universal background checks for all firearms purchases if it was done the right way. My idea of the “right way” should be acceptable to most gun owners and I would hope it would also be supported by many non-gunowners concerned about firearms ending up in the wrong hands.

For those who may not be familiar with current firearms laws in the United States, almost all firearms sales through licensed dealers must be approved through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). One exception that I know of is that in Texas if you have a license to carry a firearm (concealed carry permit) the dealer can accept that without going through NICS. A person in Texas with a license to carry has already undergone a far more extensive background check than is done by NICS.

Universal background check was used to buy this gun
The S&W model handgun I can carry in Texas because I have a license

The problem in the eyes of many is the sale of firearms between private individuals that do not go through the NICS system. It is debatable just how problematic these sales really are and how much they really contribute to crime and gun violence in the U.S. Nevertheless I would like to suggest a system that could make universal backgrounds checks a reality for all legal sales.

One problem many gun owners see with most proposals for universal background checks is the temptation of government to create a database of gun owners that could be possibly used in the future to implement massive firearms confiscation (like what happened in Australia, so don’t tell gun owners they are being overly paranoid). The system I propose would help protect against that possibility.

Why not do a NICS background check on every American when they get a driver’s license or a government id? If the check passed then put a code on the back of the driver’s license indicating the individual can legally buy a firearm.

Now when you go into a store and want to buy a firearm you present your driver’s license and the dealer turns it over and looks at the back to confirm you have already been checked. If I, as a private individual, want to sell a firearm then I ask the purchaser to show me his or her driver’s license. Simple as that. (Note that this also helps me not violate Federal law which prohibits me from selling a firearm to someone who is not a resident of my state.)

The police conducting occasional “sting operations” to find people who don’t check the license in private sales could lead to a high degree of compliance among citizens who have no criminal intent. For those with criminal intentions laws are pretty useless. That is why we have prisons.

The basic idea is that the check is done routinely for almost everyone. When NICS gets a request all they know is that someone is applying for a driver’s license or id. They have no idea if the person will use that license in the future to buy a firearm.

Sometimes people do things that should cancel their right to buy a firearm. Not a big problem with this system. Take a away their license or id and give them a new one without the enabling code. Again, a very simple procedure.

Also obviously there should be strong provisions for a person to challenge the determination that takes away their right to buy firearms. Rights should not be suspended arbitrarily but only when based on objective and well defined criteria. There must be due process of law.

There are probably details in this plan for universal background checks that I haven’t thought of, but I do think the basic premise is sound. The most important part of such a plan is that it could appeal to a lot of people, both those who own firearms and those who do not.

 

Party Like It’s 1776 In America!

Recently a New Jersey High School principal apologized for “party like it’s 1776” on prom tickets. The principal wrote:

“I especially apologize to our African American students, who I have let down by not initially recognizing the inappropriateness of this wording.” Fox News

Party like it’s 1776

The facts do not support the idea that modern Americans should be ashamed of the founding of their country, nor should they be ashamed of the fact that slavery was still an existing institution in the new country, the founding of which is associated with the year 1776 and the Declaration of Independence.

Thomas Sowell summed up the impulse that drives many modern racists trying to cash in on racism when he wrote:

“Those who mine history for sins are not searching for truth but for opportunities to denigrate their own society, or for grievances that can be cashed in today, at the expense of people who were not even born when the sins of the past were committed.” Thomas Sowell: Poisoning present by distorting slavery’s past

To hear many today you would think that slavery was invented by white Americans and the sin of slavery in America somehow negates the great virtues of America in particular, and Western Civilization in general. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Although we cannot know with absolute certainty when human slavery was invented we can be fairly certain from the evidence that it was practiced at least from the beginning of the Neolithic age well over 10,000 years ago.

In centuries since people of every human race have practiced slavery, and been enslaved. Probably through the whole of human history as many Caucasians have been enslaved as people of African descent – see White Slavery and Slavery on Wikipedia. The very word “slave” comes from the name of the Slavic people of Europe who were a source of slaves to the Muslim empire of the Middle Ages.

It is true that slavery was still being practiced in America at its founding, but America was not unique in that respect – slavery was common throughout the world at that time in many places. Only a fraction of Africans exported as slaves went to North America. Many more went to South America and Islamic countries of the Middle East.

What makes America different is that it was part of the Western Civilization that by the 18th century was starting to think of ending slavery and in the end did end it, at least in the parts controlled by it. Quoting Thomas Sowell again:

“Of all the tragic facts about the history of slavery, the most astonishing to an American today is that, although slavery was a worldwide institution for thousands of years, nowhere in the world was slavery a controversial issue prior to the 18th century. People of every race and color were enslaved – and enslaved others. White people were still being bought and sold as slaves in the Ottoman Empire, decades after American blacks were freed.”

“Everyone hated the idea of being a slave but few had any qualms about enslaving others. Slavery was just not an issue, not even among intellectuals, much less among political leaders, until the 18th century – and then it was an issue only in Western civilization. Among those who turned against slavery in the 18th century were George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and other American leaders. You could research all of the 18th century Africa or Asia or the Middle East without finding any comparable rejection of slavery there. But who is singled out for scathing criticism today? American leaders of the 18th century.”

“Deciding that slavery was wrong was much easier than deciding what to do with millions of people from another continent, of another race, and without any historical preparation for living as free citizens in a society like that of the United States, where they were 20 percent of the population.”

“It is clear from the private correspondence of Washington, Jefferson, and many others that their moral rejection of slavery was unambiguous, but the practical question of what to do now had them baffled. That would remain so for more than half a century.”

That question was finally answered by a war in which one life was lost [620,000 Civil War casualties] for every six people freed [3.9 million].

The Thomas Sowell Reader

Americans of all colors should be proud of America and of 1776. Go ahead and party like it’s 1776!

Was America perfect at its founding? No. Was it a step in the right direction? Absolutely!

History records the evils that men and women have done. It also records their difficult progress, step by step, to eliminate evil. In that story, the story of America is one of progress in that direction. It was not a story without error, or without evils, but it was a story of great progress, some of the greatest.

Men like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and others were slave owners in their lifetime, but their acts and their intellectual contributions certainly were key in setting the foundations for the elimination of slavery in America.

No American should ever apologize for 1776 to anyone. America inherited slavery from the past and among other countries in the West, especially Great Britain, America fought to abolish it. Black American slaves were not freed soon after 1776, but the fact is that 1776 was instrumental in getting to the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 and the final freeing of slaves in 1865.

Americans are not proud of the history of slavery in America, but they are justifiably proud of their country’s achievements in ending it, and the great sacrifices they made to do so.

Yes, let’s party like it’s 1776.