Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Respect life

Rick Hinshaw, who writes the Respect Life column in The Long Island Catholic, the newspaper of the diocese of Rockville Center, writes about immigration:
We don’t need immigration restrictionists demonizing people for trying to provide for their families, nor do we need immigration supporters labeling as inherently sinful anyone who disagrees with them. And we certainly don’t need politicians on both sides fanning the flames of anger and resentment rather than engaging the issue on its merits.

We are called as Catholics to welcome the stranger, to uphold the dignity of the human person, and to not “unjustly look down upon” the “foreign laborer,” in the words of Vatican II. I believe we are also called as Americans to uphold our nation’s proud heritage as a refuge for the poor and oppressed. I fail to see why we should begrudge today’s immigrants the same opportunities our own ancestors had, to come here and build a better life for themselves and their families.

Many supporters of stronger border enforcement insist that they do not begrudge today’s immigrants that opportunity — “as long as they come here legally, like our ancestors did.”
However, argues syndicated columnist Linda Chavez, most of today’s immigrants are coming here the same way our ancestors did.

“Until the 1920s,” Ms. Chavez points out, “people who wanted to immigrate simply showed up at U.S. ports, or in the case of Mexicans and Canadians, just walked across the border.” It’s just that what was legal for them we have today made illegal.

And yet…

The rest of the article is here.