What do we do with 12 million who didn’t follow the rules?

Dan McLaughlin on RedState took on the idea of amnesty and what it means versus how the word is being used. It is a loaded term in the debate about illegal immigration. Even the immigration debate is confused by relationships with Mexico, folks who haven’t got over the Mexican American war, issues of the indigents, labor force complications, and other such things.

The issue is cited as one reason for the recent election outcome. Hardliners were not able to get their way and even in Arizona lost what was otherwise considered to be a safe seat.

Dan describes two kinds of amnesty and then says “there are three main reasons why governments may rationally choose to offer an amnesty for violators of some particular type of law.” He winds up with the idea that

“A final thought along those lines; I’m not an expert on the ins and outs of all the pending bills. But the idea that we should treat citizenship as a thing of value that could be sold is one thing; the idea that we should sell it for $1,000 is ludicrous. … The fact is, if we are letting illegal aliens buy their way into citizenship mainly on the theory that they will become sufficiently productive members of society to be worth looking the other way at how they got here, we should treat that citizenship as a valuable asset, not a discount appliance.”

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