Thanksgiving atheist theology »« Herman Cain: putting the fun back in fundamentalist

Newt goes there

Newt Gingrich is being roundly criticized or praised this morning for purportedly showing a heart on immigration. One never knows with Newt, a pretty face or a stack of cash is all it takes for him to break every vow he’s ever made. But there are advantages and disadvantages in what he seems to be proposing on one of the Teaparty’s hot-button issues:

(NYT Blogs) — “I don’t see how the party that says it’s the party of the family is going to adopt an immigration policy which destroys families that have been here a quarter century,” Mr. Gingrich said during the debate. “And I’m prepared to take the heat for saying let’s be humane in enforcing the law without giving them citizenship, but by finding a way to create legality so that they are not separated from their families.”

Oh, the humanity! In fairness Gingrich is right, but I don’t trust his motives and any trust he had in general got pissed away on affair number three years ago. The problem is there are millions of US citizens born of illegal immigrant parents. They’re all ages, and some are way too young to live on their own. Deport their parents and those kids end up in massive government-run orphanages or worse, which denies them their civil rights. Unconstitutional big government ethnic cleansing, quite a conundrum legally and morally. If Gingrich is hinting at th e existence of that reality, so far unrequited by the foreign hating conservative and religious base he exploits, good for him.

What worries me is his quick caveat added later that they “won’t be citizens”. That suggests the parents would quite literally be official second class residents without the same rights, privileges, and responsibilities the rest of us have. In conservaspeak that’s all pig latin for don’t vote, can’t sue, can’t complain, work for less than minimum wage. It conveniently removes the objection wealthy conservatives have to immigrants being deported, i.e., they work cheap, but neuters them politically. It may well represent the next attempt by the GOP to divide and conquer an otherwise politically libelous demographic. That two-tiered system also treads uncomfortably close to state-sanctioned slavery

Comments

  1. Yoritomo says

    Are you saying there’s nothing between full citicenship and state-sanctioned slavery? Do you argue that the status of “legal permanent resident, non-citizen” should be abolished altogether? I’d say such a status is precisely what we should aim for, of course with the possibility of full citicenship at a later time. I don’t see why wages for legal permanent residents would be any lower than for citizens, or why they should be unable to complain or sue.

  2. d cwilson says

    That two-tiered system also treads uncomfortably close to state-sanctioned slavery

    I’m sure that the republican candidates and their corporate overlords are perfectly comfortable with that.

  3. leftwingfox says

    Are you saying there’s nothing between full citicenship and state-sanctioned slavery?

    More that the natural economic incentives inevitably push second-class citizens towards the latter end of the spectrum.

  4. marcus says

    I’m with Yoritomo @ 1. I fully support a regulated guest worker/ “landed immigrant” (road to citizenship) solution to the problem of illegal immigration. But we have to find a middle ground that respects the humanity and civil rights of immigrants (whatever their background or ethnicity.)and at the same time allows for the enforcement of common-sense immigration law. Otherwise it is just an open-door free-for-all which isn’t fair to the people who actually are citizens. (Whatever their background or ethnicity.)

  5. Crommunist says

    I came here to say what Yoritomo said. I have friends (and a father) who came to Canada as ‘landed immigrants’ and who didn’t achieve citizen status for many years. They are the proudest Canadians I know. Immediate citizenship may be worthwhile – I don’t know what the counterarguments are; however, there’s abundant precedent for a ‘halfway’ solution that doesn’t rob people of their human rights.

  6. leftwingfox says

    Immediate citizenship may be worthwhile – I don’t know what the counterarguments are; however, there’s abundant precedent for a ‘halfway’ solution that doesn’t rob people of their human rights.

    I think the ultimate question is whether his “without giving them citizenship” line means “No citizenship now, but a path to citizenship later” or “No citizenship ever”. The former is the sort of thing republicans have been losing their shit over for months now, the latter has some major rights issues in the way such systems are typically practiced.

  7. says

    I don’t think there’s a decent solution to it. I can’t think of a single solution, outside of full citizenship, where someone with unsavory interests and lots of money can’t corrupt the shit out of any solution attempted and fuck over a bunch of powerless residents and non residents, no matter how well intentioned that solution may be.

    This morning when this was written I was thinking Newt may have hit on a great way to divide the demographic. But watching the wingnuts froth at the mouth over it, no solution of any kind will happen if the GOP has a shred of power to obstruct.

  8. Yoritomo says

    I still don’t see why residents should be powerless. And do you really think full citizenship is a miracle cure against being fucked over by people with unsavory interests and lots of money? I doubt that, too.

Leave a Reply