By now the world has seen the video: A little girl asked Mrs. Obama why the president was “taking everybody away that doesn’t have papers.”
“That’s something that we have to work on, right? To make sure that people can be here with the right kind of papers,” Mrs. Obama said.
“But my mom doesn’t have any papers,” the student said. In an interview conducted after the event, the 7-year old girl told a reporter: “I’m a big girl and I don’t want to be left with nothing. I could almost die.”
The right believes the law is sacred. The left believes people are sacred. Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas believe in “original intent.” Ruth Bader Ginsburg says the both world and the Constitution have changed markedly. The right feels law changes are Congress’s domain. The left feels Congress often violates the Constitution, which is the reason for the Supreme Court.
And while those august ladies and gentlemen debate arcane passages and footnotes and what Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison et al “really meant” in 1787, and whether or not those intentions apply to today’s world, and while Arizona will expend a great deal of time, money and effort to increase deportations, a little girl, an American citizen, worries that her mother may be deported.
And I wonder, why do we choose to hunt down and deport undocumented immigrants? Do undocumented immigrants cause more problems, commit more crimes, take more jobs, than documented immigrants from the same country? Why is gaining documentation so difficult? Does the many-year’s wait add to our wealth or security? Would America be a better, safer, wealthier, more productive place if we could get rid of undocumented immigrants?
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell