As a nation we currently host 12 million residents whose very presence here is illegal, but whose departure would result in hardship and instability. While the remedy will be as complex as the problem, the solution is found at the source of the predicament.
Most immigrants come to America seeking the “unalienable rights” secured by our Republic. But the very principle that draws illegal immigrants across our borders becomes the basis for holding them accountable and the justification for keeping them out.
America is founded upon the rule of law — a tradition of holding the actions of our government to the objective standard of fundamental moral law. This legal ordering not only preexists, but transcends government. Because it is not bestowed by the state, it cannot be applied or complied with selectively. And just as the law is not subject to the will of the majority, it cannot be suspended in its application to the individual, regardless of the alternative or consequence.
While this irony is troubling, it does not make our course impossible or self-defeating. Like most Americans, I am not an expert on immigration policy. But I am certain that any law Congress passes must be measured against and ultimately sustain America’s greatest virtue — its foundation in the rule of law.
Therefore, it seems obvious that our borders must be immediately sealed and all immigrants required to enter our country legally. We are at war with an enemy that has demonstrated a commitment and ability to breach our borders and kill our citizens. Furthermore, it is naive to view illegal immigration as a victimless crime. Those who impose themselves on an already strained system cause hardship for legal citizens who utilize public resources.