A Rebuttal to the SBC on Immigration and the Gospel, Part I I
On the Political Consequences of Immigration
In my previous post I dealt primarily with the economic consequences of immigration. I would like to continue by highlighting the political problems caused by the continuing high levels of immigration.
In his book “Who Are We?: The Challenges to America’s National Identity”, legendary political scientist Samuel Huntington has done yeoman work pointing out the worrying features of current immigration policy. He writes: "Mexican immigration differs from past immigration and most other contemporary immigration due to a combination of six factors: contiguity, scale, illegality, regional concentration [in the American Southwest], persistence, and historical presence... Demographically, socially, and culturally, the reconquista (re-conquest) of the Southwest United States by Mexican immigrants is well underway."
If Huntington is correct the SBC has officially acquiesced to Reconquista and endorsed the transformation of the American nation with its call to amnesty. In so doing it is merely following the example established by our political leaders.
In the 1990s, Bill Clinton embraced the coming demographic revolution: "We want to become a multiracial, multiethnic society. This will arguably be the third great revolution.... to prove that we literally can live without ... having a dominant European culture."
Shortly after these comments, Clinton headed west to exult in the fact that California's white folks were soon to lose their majority status: "Within the next three years here in California, no single race or ethnic group will make up a majority of the state's population. ... A half century from now, there will be no majority race in America."
Running to secure the GOP nomination in 2000, George W. Bush also welcomed the reconstitution of the United States. Mr. Bush said:
America has one national creed, but many accents. We are now one of the largest Spanish-speaking nations in the world. We're a major source of Latin music, journalism, and culture. Just go to Miami, or San Antonio, Los Angeles, Chicago, or West New York, New Jersey... and close your eyes and listen. You could just as easily be in Santo Domingo or Santiago, or San Miguel de Allende. For years our nation has debated this change - some have praised it and others have resented it. By nominating me, my party has made a choice to welcome the new America.
Who exactly gave these hombres the right to create a "new America," and what might it look like from a political standpoint, if it survives at all? Alexander Hamilton said that “the safety of the Republic depends essentially on the energy of a common national sentiment…The influx of foreigners must, therefore, tend to…corrupt the national spirit…” As the old saying goes, in politics demography is destiny.
The demographic tsunami unleashed by 45 years of mass immigration will distort and change American political life in at least five ways. First, traditional political institutions and especially parties and their campaign tactics will compete for this new bloc of voters. Such is the nature of democratic polities and importing a new class of voters will reshape the way politics is conducted. Our parties and institutions will adapt to the demands, interests, and values of immigrants by abandoning issues and constituencies they have supported in the past.
A second long-term possibility is that immigrants may import new demands and interests that cannot be met by existing political institutions. The likelihood is that they will create new political vehicles to pursue their goals, further polarizing and fracturing the electorate along racial lines, which is a recipe for continued conflict. According to a Zogby poll, some 58% of Mexicans think that the American southwest belongs to Mexico. One might assume that Republican and Democrat politicians will resist such claims. In such an event, it would not be terribly surprising to see new parties form that are more amenable to be shaped by the forces of polarization and disunity.
Third, mass immigration is likely to create a backlash, creating further racial and ethnic polarization in the country. Our political elites actually relish such an outcome as it provides justification for further meddling in the lives of citizens. The management of racial and ethnic strife is bread and butter for the state and unchecked borders become a means of creating chaos to be “solved” by statist means.
The late Sam Francis coined the term "Anarcho-Tyranny" which he defined as "both anarchy (the failure of the state to enforce the laws) and, at the same time, tyranny—the enforcement of laws by the state for oppressive purposes; the criminalization of the law-abiding and innocent through exorbitant taxation, bureaucratic regulation, the invasion of privacy, and the engineering of social institutions, such as the family and local schools; the imposition of thought control through 'sensitivity training' and multiculturalist curricula, 'hate crime' laws, gun-control laws that punish or disarm otherwise law-abiding citizens but have no impact on violent criminals who get guns illegally, and a vast labyrinth of other measures. In a word, anarcho-tyranny."
Francis elaborates on immigration as part-and-parcel of this strategy:
The most obvious sign of what would normally be called anarchy is the immigration invasion. By some serious estimates, no fewer than 11-to-13-million illegal aliens now live in the United States, most of them from Mexico or Central America. The Mexican government actively encourages this invasion and, as the press recently reported, even provides to its own citizens a guidebook on how to carry it out. Our government does nothing serious to stop the invasion, to apprehend the invaders, or to deter the aggression that the Mexican state is perpetrating. The invaders—as residents of Arizona, where some 40 percent of illegal aliens enter the country, constantly complain—threaten the lives, safety, and property of law-abiding American citizens; depress wages; gobble welfare; and constitute a new underclass that is an object of demagogic political manipulation by both American and Mexican politicians. (The illegals in this country cannot legally vote, though that does not necessarily stop them, but they remain voters in Mexico, and Mexican politicians now routinely campaign for their votes inside the United States.) The federal government invaded Iraq, although Iraq never harmed or threatened us, but it does virtually nothing to resist the massive invasion (and eventually the conquest) of its own country and the deliberate violation of its own laws by Mexico.
Fourth, the Republican Party is finished. Peter Brimelow and Ed Rubestein have been arguing since at least 1997 that mass immigration would leave the GOP as a minority party, in spite of their best efforts to "reach out" to Hispanic voters. Large blocs of immigrant voters have typically become aligned with the party supporting big government (though that would describe both parties presently in the United States). Given the biblical limitations placed on civil government Christians ought to be concerned by the prospect of adding millions of potential voters who would likely use the state as a means of redistributing resources, i.e., theft by ballot box.
Finally, mass immigration will shift political power from the heartland to the coasts. Some seventy-five percent of immigrants settle in just six states. Between 1990 and 2000, California lost nearly a million white residents, yet the population of the state increased dramatically due to immigration. California picked up five House seats as a result of reapportionment. Texas, New York, and Florida also picked up seats while Michigan, Mississippi, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin each lost one seat and Colorado and Kentucky both failed to gain a seat that they otherwise would have had there been no immigration after 1990.
Immigration Undermines Social Trust
Mass immigration also dramatically undermines covenantal thinking by exalting the individual at the expense of family, community and nation. Individuals leave behind their community and desert their homeland rather than working to improve it. They move to a different place and by their presence in large numbers necessarily transform it culturally, economically and politically. Who benefits? Perhaps the immigrant himself and possibly those individuals acquiring whatever service he may provide. But community, the ties of natural affection that are produced by commonality are completely undermined.
Research by the influential political scientist Robert Putnam, of Bowling Alone fame, shows that the more diverse a community is the less likely its inhabitants are to trust anyone.
In the face of diversity people tend to "hunker down" and surround themselves entirely with the familiar. "We act like turtles. The effect of diversity is worse than had been imagined. And it’s not just that we don’t trust people who are not like us. In diverse communities, we don’t trust people who do look like us," Putnam says.
Putnam adjusted his data for distinctions in class, income, and other variables but still reached the "shocking" conclusion that untrammeled ethnic diversity is a breeding ground of distrust that spreads like an aggressive cancer, destroying the body politic. "They don’t trust the local mayor, they don’t trust the local paper, they don’t trust other people and they don’t trust institutions," said Prof Putnam. "The only thing there’s more of is protest marches and TV watching."
Putnam found that trust was lowest in Los Angeles, that heaven on earth for mulitcultists everywhere, but that his findings were also applicable in South Dakota.
Mass immigration also undermines the free market, which necessarily exists as part of social framework. While that framework needs a system of law to protect property rights, enforce contracts, prosecute practitioners of fraud, etc., it is also dependent on a rudimentary level of trust among the populace. If that trust is undermined, the foundation supporting the entire edifice crumbles, with the state being the institution forcefully putting the house back together.
A classical liberal like John Stuart Mill knew that free institutions are "next to impossible in a country made up of different nationalities." But speaking of immigration, Putnam says "that immigration materially benefited both the 'importing' and 'exporting' societies, and that trends have 'been socially constructed, and can be socially reconstructed.'"
The state exists for three primary purposes: 1) to protect human life made in the image of God (Gen. 9:6); 2) to serve as a minister of justice defending the law abiding from lawbreakers (Rom. 13:3-4); and 3) to provide for a peaceful, orderly society (I Tim. 1:1-2). As it relates to immigration is the state fulfilling its charge before God?
In his essay, Dr. Moore makes one brief reference to Romans 13, a primary scriptural text dealing with the role and authority of civil government. Moore quite curtly dismisses those wacky simpletons who assume illegal immigration should be treated as…well….illegal. Moore writes, “It is easy to lash out at undocumented immigrants as ‘law-breakers,’ and to cite Romans 13 as reason to simply call for deportation and retribution. But this issue is far more complicated than that.” Indeed, I hope that I’ve shown it is MUCH more complicated than that.
Does the magistrate not have a duty to protect his people from dissolution and destruction through demographic invasion? Are Americans under some moral and legal obligation to obliterate themselves or be "socially reconstructed"? Are nationhood and nationality gifts from God? If so, is it right and proper to destroy them by appealing to the universal ethical claims of Christianity? I'm waiting for someone from the SBC to answer.
Next time: Jesus was an illegal immigrant, and other logical fallacies and a brief dissection of Dr. Moore's faulty interpretation and application of the law of the stranger...and much more fun!