Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently made headlines and riled Democrats and their media lackeys by sending two airplanes full of Persons Here Illegally from Florida to Martha’s Vineyard.
DeSantis was harshly criticized for using the migrants as “political pawns.” Apparently, he figured he should send them to where wealthy progressives frolic, basking in their own decadence while paying lip service to the huddled masses yearning to be free, but not actually rolling up their sleeves to do anything to help them.
The PHIs were subsequently moved to a military base on nearby Cape Cod. But considering they’re here trespassing illegally, why wouldn’t they be sent back to their home countries?
A lot of people don’t understand that the United States is private property. Once you’re inside legally, you have a right to move about from state to state, or even to leave. The same holds true for a sports stadium. You can walk to the concession stand or the souvenir store. But you need a ticket to get inside in the first place. Same with the United States.
Should there be compassion for our fellow human beings in other countries whose lives are in danger because of war, natural disaster or extreme poverty? Of course. But here’s where asylum is abused.
First of all, in order for asylum to be granted, a person has to have a well-founded fear of persecution. In other words, it’s not enough to say, “My country is run by a ruthless dictator.” The asylum applicant must be a specific target (for example, someone who tried to overthrow the government or a close friend or relative thereof).
Second, that individual should apply for asylum in the closest country where the danger does not exist. Instead, asylum applicants forum shop and, not surprisingly, most choose the U.S. as their forever destination.
Following that logic, only citizens of Canada and Mexico should be entitled to list the U.S. as their first choice to obtain asylum, and they’d have no reason to because both of those countries’ governments are stable.
What’s happening now is like a starving homeless person being led to a warm, safe shelter and insisting on being taken to a five-star hotel.
In my book “Stop Calling Them ‘Immigrants’” I pointed out that as a kid in New York City in the 1970s, I was surrounded mostly by Democrats. Neighbors, teachers, parents’ friends, just about everyone. But if I had asked them what they thought of porous borders and sanctuary cities, they would have found the notion utterly absurd.
That’s how far we’ve devolved on the issue of immigration in only a few decades.
For most of the 20th century, differences between Democrats and Republicans mostly boiled down to the size of government: how much taxation there should be and what problems are best handled by government versus the private sector.
But the sheer insanity of shuffling around people who crossed our borders illegally as if they’re hotel guests affected by a double-booking error and still need a room is astounding.
DeSantis may be accused of grandstanding and posturing so as to position himself for a presidential run in 2024. Whatever his motives, the result is that he is raising national awareness of the immigration problem — because Americans in most states have only seen droves of PHIs on TV; they haven’t lived among them.
Will denizens of wealthy neighborhoods feel that being empathetic toward the PHI transients is a way of “giving back” for their own good fortune? Of course, and that is admirable in terms of human decency.
However, as the buses and airplanes keep arriving, surely they’ll realize that, much like a boat sent to rescue passengers of a sinking ship has limited capacity, so does the United States.
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