Reclaiming the Terms, Part 2: Immigrant
The immigration issues have not been in the news lately. But they will come back eventually. They always come back, until the issue will be resolved to everyone’s satisfaction. Thus, even though I got to this issue only now, it is useful to touch upon. This is a continuation of an idea that started this blog: a desire to reclaim the terminology of the English language. The large part of the following first appeared as a comment and then on front page of Bill Faith’s original blog. I’d like to have this all on my blog as well.
one that immigrates: as a: a person who comes to a country to take up permanent residence b: a plant or animal that becomes established in an area where it was previously unknown
— immigrant adjective
However, in my view this definition omits a uniquely American meaning of the word "immigrant": someone who comes to a new country, learns the language of a new country, which is English in the case of USA, assimilate and become part of the new country. I personally resent when people marching and waving other country’s flags are called "immigrants" to this country. That is because I am myself a naturalized American, i. e. an immigrant. Those people waving Mexican flags and, as they say in Russian, pumping their right (kachat’ prava), are not immigrants. They are unassimilated migrants at best, and foreign invaders at worst, their legal status notwithstanding. Thus, we come to the core of the problem as I see it. The problem, in my opinion, is not "illegal immigration", as it is commonly called. The problem is unassimilated migration. The legal status of those migrants is absolutely irrelevant. I bet the majority of those people participating in so-called pro-immigrant demonstrations were in fact legal residents or citizens, many of them perhaps born and raised in this country. If you were illegal, would you risk attracting attention to yourself by going to such demonstration? Yet they cannot be called "Americans". As a country, we failed to assimilate certain segment of newcomers. We did it by allowing the Left to declare them a protected minority and pander to them. Why do we keep hearing that if you speak Spanish, you’ll get a better job? Better job doing what? Selling tacos in San Isidro? Every time I go to a polling place, there are ballots available in Spanish. Don’t you have to speak English in order to cast an informed vote? I am always tempted to demand a ballot in Russian. I actually did it once, just for laughs. The people at the polling place explained to me that there are not enough Russian-speaking immigrants, but if I want ballots in Russian, I need to write to San Diego Registrar of Voters and ask for them. The worst part of it is that had I demanded a ballot in Russian hard enough, I would probably get it. And that is really sad. And by the way, they do have ballots in Russian in Brighton Beach, which I resent just as much as the Spanish ballots. I can understand older people not being able to learn English. But people in their 20s and 30s? My wife, as a nurse, had patients who were disappointed, to say the least, when she could not speak Spanish with them. And they were themselves, or had family members who were young enough and have been in this country long enough to learn the language. Yet, they never did.
The Left made it even worse. They managed to brainwash the younger generation, whose parents came to this country to seek better life for their children, into hating this country. The leftist teachers distorted history, and now these young people do not see themselves as Americans, but identify with some other group that was supposedly wronged by America. Yet they were often born and raised in this country. To further illustrate the irrelevance of the legal status to this much deeper problem, who would you prefer: one of those kids waving Mexican flags and dumping on this country, or someone who sneaked across the border at the age of, let’s say, 17, and a year later, out of appreciation for America, using fake ID, enlisted into the Marine Corps and put his life on the line for this country? I would definitely prefer such an "illegal" Marine. In fact, I would give him US Citizenship. This is just a hypothetical, but I think it illustrates the point. And no, I am not excusing the illegal crossing of the border, I am just saying that it is irrelevant to the issue of loyalty and assimilation, which is much more important in the time of war.
So, now we have a problem. There is a segment of the population that is not loyal, and often openly hostile to this country. You can call them "5th column". How can we solve it? First of all, the bleeding has to be stopped. The border has to be secured. It does not necessarily mean a wall, but most definitely means some sort of border troops, similar to what the Soviets had. National Guard can play this role. There was never a wall around the Soviet Union. But there was a ploughed strip of land all around, where the footsteps were always visible, and there were border military patrols. The border was secure. By the way, as a side note, the Russians have now illegal migration problem on the Chinese border. This is not really new: back in the 60s and 70s the Chinese Government would send civilians across the border. The border dispute there is probably about 150 years old and it did at times escalated into an open border warfare. My dad once on a business trip ran into a guy who used to be a helicopter pilot for the Soviet Air Force. He told my dad that they were taken to hospitals treating Soviet soldiers mutilated by the Chinese and then given assignments to strafe those Chinese attempting to cross the border and destroy border villages. Back then it worked to stop the Chinese infiltration. But I don’t think they would do it now, so they do have a problem.
But back to our problem. It is possible to secure the border. Then the immigration process has to be streamlined. Ideally, the whole INS, or whatever it is called now, should be replaced, but this is just wishful thinking. Any kind of guest worker program or work visas should be eliminated and replaced with just Green Cards. So, for example, if some employer is willing to sponsor someone to come and work in this country, that person should get a Green Card instead of H1B Visa. There should be strings attached: if that person does not state his or her desire to immigrate and become an American, the Green Card should not be given, and that person should not be allowed to come to this country. Why? Because the temporary condition for that person that prevents assimilation should be eliminated. After 5 years, that person should be allowed and reminded to apply for Citizenship. A year should be given for that. Then another reminder should be sent, stating that if the Citizenship application is not filled up by the end of another year, that person will be deported and not allowed to come back ever, or for at least 10 years. If that person is caught in the country illegally, the prison sentence should be extremely stiff, like 10 years. You see, my idea is essentially that America should be for Americans, both old and new, native-born and naturalized. Dual Citizenships could be allowed, but only with friendly countries. The alliances come and go, so some friendly countries might become hostile. Should that happen, those holding dual citizenship with those formerly friendly countries should be specifically asked at that time where their loyalties lie. And if they choose that other country, they should be sent there.
So, if this is ever implemented, we will never have people who live here, but who will by definition never assimilate. The only people living in the country would be either loyal Americans or those who are waiting to become loyal Americans. So, what do we do with the people that are now illegally in the country? Well, after the border is secure, and it is actually easier to come to this country legally, than illegally, those who are already here can be given an amnesty. Why? Because the only alternative to it is to round them up, men, women and children, including the kids who were born in this country, and throw them out. Besides this being a logistical nightmare, I don’t think any of us are going to like what we see, if this is done. Thus, anything other than a complete legalization will still leave an unassimilated chunk of population. Any other idea, like requiring people to go to a country of origin and apply for Green Cards will not work: they are already here, they do not have a lot of money, and anything they would have to do to go back would cause tremendous disruption to their lives. Besides, even if we give them a promise that they will automatically get Green Cards in their country of origin, still they would not feel that they have any guarantees. So, they would just stay, and the problem will never be solved. And that is just because we don’t want to reward their law-breaking of entering the country illegally. Do we really want to keep a permanent 5th column in the country just for that? The goal should be not just an orderly immigration, but also a thorough assimilation of immigrants, the way it was done 100 years ago. So, what’s left? The criminal background check. That is a joke. You can only check criminal backgrounds of those who come from friendly Western countries, and there are not many of those. (Mexico is not a friendly Western country. It might not be hostile, but it is also not Western.) Instead, immigrants committing crimes should be designated as "foreign criminals", somewhat similar to spies. Now, that of course should apply only to premeditated crimes, not DUIs. They should be given extremely stiff sentences, like 20 years, and then deported. Perhaps, this should even include naturalized citizens. And citizens involved in Islamo-Fascist terrorism should be charged with treason. The punishment for treason during wartime is death.
Thus, here is my solution to the current immigration problem. We can call it "America for Americans". It does not stop immigration, but demands that every single immigrant assimilates and becomes a loyal American. What do you think? Did I solve "unassimilated migration" problem?
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