on compassion

Kleinheider opines to the Claudia Nunez case:

You show me an illegal immigrant facing deportation and I’ll show you sad story. They all have one and they should all go back to the country of their origin. We have established rules. We need to hold to them. Not just when they plow into someone mother on Briley Parkway – all the time.

Last night, as we sat around discussing the case, the sentiment seemed to be “who could possibly argue for splitting this family and deporting Claudia?” I knew that when the argument was made, it would be via the “rule of law” argument. I expected it to be Coble, though, and not Kleinheider. So, I’ll open by quoting Katherine, who says it well enough:

While I support the rule of law, I also believe that justice untempered by mercy is no justice at all.

The ridiculousness of the Nunez case provides two, distinct opportunities:

  • To shed some light on the ridiculousness of our current immigration law (which is only getting worse), and provide the impetus for change.
  • To prevent a terrible, preventable, tragedy from befalling Claudia Nunez and her family.

But before I get to that, let me fisk the hell out of AC’s post:

Because compassion is part of the problem. It is the compassion of us all that the business community counts on to continue to get their cheap labor.

No. Nice red herring, but no. “Compassion” is not the problem. It’s not “compassion” that provides cheap labor. The “cheap” labor is provided by one main thing: restrictive immigration policy that is not enforced, resulting in a large non-legal population that enters the workforce without access to labor law and other forms or legal recourse for abuse. Open up our economic borders, legitimize those that are already here (feel free to fine them, to preserve the “rule of law”), and this problem goes away. This has nothing to do with compassion. That’s pure economics.

It is compassion that Democrats count on to get their cheap votes. There are all sorts interests clamoring for compassion. They want stories like these to get out so that we shall remain weak.

Right. Uhh.. If we let this mother remain in the country to raise her kids, we’ll be weak. Got it.

You want compassion? Have compassion for the natives. Have compassion for those whose health care costs have risen do to immigrants using the emergency room as their primary care physician. Have compassion for those whose jobs have been lost and wages depressed.

False dichotomy here. I do weep for those affected adversely by immigration, and I assure you, it works both ways. This is what happens when you have a stratified labor market with an underprivileged, exploited underclass of workers. And, as far as “immigrants using the emergency room as their primary care physician”, that statement needs to be stricken from the post. That’s not an immigration problem. That’s an American problem. Illegal immigrants are not the only ones being screwed by a lack of preventative health care. But hey, why fix our country’s failed markets when we can blame it on the Mexicans instead?

The need for compassion is overstated. We take in more legal immigrants than any country in the world per capita and we have been quite lax for some time on illegal immigration. We have been about as compassionate as we can gonna get.

Evidence please. Specifically: evidence that demonstrates that increased immigration is an economic problem (absent restrictive, interventionist immigration law as exists in our country). Immigration is not a problem. Immigration is economics in action – it’s the movement of labor from one place to another. We should welcome it.

This argument of blind adherence to the “rule of law” ignores the fact that we as a society make laws. We don’t live in a theocracy and our laws aren’t pre-ordained. We have the power to isolate and purge injustice from our society wherever it’s found – including in our own law. Especially in our own law. Arguing “because it’s illegal” as a defense of any action is an exercise in circular logic that deflects any real, rational reasoning on the issue. Blind defense of authority is a cowardly act.