Advertisement
 
Sunday, February 14, 2016
Amsterdam, NY ,

 

Advertisement

The question of amnesty

Monday, February 18, 2013 - Updated: 5:09 PM

The more complex and important the debate, the more likely a single word can sway public opinion, which in turn exerts irresistible pressure on members of Congress who face the voters again soon enough.

So no matter how much we might agree that the nation's immigration system is a broken mess in desperate need of reform, one word swells into a Jabba-the-Hut barrier to sensible advancement: amnesty.

It has become almost tiresome to argue over the definition. Supporters will point to fact upon fact to show that comprehensive reform is anything but amnesty. Instead of granting guilt-free citizenship, plan after plan requires illegal immigrants to pass background checks, pay fines and back taxes, learn English and start their path to legalization at the back of the line.

Opponents shake their heads and dig in: "They broke the law, didn't they? Secure the border, and enforce the laws we already have."

Everyone remains stuck in an angry place that precludes progress toward a smarter, fairer system. It needn't be this way, and we're optimistic -- for the first time in years -- that reasonable people of good intention can push the debate beyond a single nettlesome word.

Opponents remain stung by memories of the 1986 Simpson-Mazzoli Act, which effectively legalized 3 million illegal immigrants but never provided the promised enforcement and border security. That truly was amnesty, and it's no surprise that it led to more, not fewer, illegal crossings over the years.

Opponents would have a point today if the Senate framework or President Barack Obama's similar plan were as feckless. Instead, their goals are to make legality a stronger inducement than illegality and finally put the amnesty argument in the shadows, where it belongs.

-- The Dallas Morning News

     

Comments made about this article - 0 Total

Comment on this article

Advertisement
Subscribe to The Recorder

 

The Recorder Sports Schedule

Most Popular

    Area high school sports calendar
    Saturday, February 13, 2016

    Four face charges after fights at school
    Wednesday, February 10, 2016

    Concerns spark resignations
    Tuesday, February 09, 2016

    Officials express concern wage hike will hurt business
    Monday, February 08, 2016

    Donations lining up to help develop park in East End
    Monday, February 08, 2016

    Family begins endowment to help Make-A-Wish kids
    Monday, February 08, 2016

    Fonda, Fultonville face a deficit in the sewer budget
    Tuesday, February 09, 2016

    GASD narrows superintendent field to three
    Friday, February 12, 2016

    Council plans to sell some foreclosures separately
    Wednesday, February 10, 2016

    Gloversville man charged with murdering his wife
    Thursday, February 11, 2016

Advertisement

Copyright © McClary Media, Inc.

Privacy Policies: The Recorder

Contact Us

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook