Compassion Uber Alles

Last week WRKO’s John DePetro (now my favorite talk show host) had “Illegal Thursday,” where he had two illegal aliens who would like to attend Massachusetts state-run colleges at the in-state tuition level. These two people explained that they had come to the US as children, gone to schools here, graduated, and been accepted into colleges — but couldn’t afford to attend.

This morning, Boston Glob Columnist Adrian Walker opined about it, in a piece called “Degrees of Separation.” She hits on all the usual pro-illegal-alien claptrap, which in this case includes the “they didn’t choose to come here as children, so it’s not their fault” bit.

Folks might want to step back a bit, or turn away. This could get messy.

First of all, the “don’t blame them for their parents’ misdeeds” argument is getting old. It occurs to me that it is the exact opposite of the “slavery reparations” arguments — those who descended from slave-owners are being punished for their ancestor’s misdeeds. Also, while it is true that the children aren’t responsible for their coming here, from the instant they turn 18 they are responsible for their own actions, and the ongoing violations of the law.

Next up, Mr. Walker says that the beneficiaries of this move would be only about 400 students a year. Others have actually read the bill, and have spotted loopholes that could open up the state’s colleges to a flood of applicants, all demanding their “right” to subsidized tuition.

And even if it is just 400, let’s run the numbers: the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition is about $9,000/year. That works out to $3.6 million dollars a year — hardly chump change.

Mr. Walker also bemoans the fact that it can take up to ten years for an illegal alien to follow the process to become a legal resident. Apparently he endorses short-circuiting that process when the illegal aliens can come up with a suitably pathetic sob story, and to hell with those who actually do follow the rules.

Mr. Walker does an admirable job summing up my position, and that of his opponents:

The opposition has much more to so with the sense that undocumented immigrants don’t deserve the benefits of citizenship. Within the State House, that is coupled with not wanting to open the door to the immigration issues that could follow, such as drivers’ licenses for the undocumented.

But he tries to dismiss them with a simplistic play for emotions:

The trouble with this argument is that immigration is a fact of life, and it isn’t going anywhere. Children should not be punished for their parents’ failures to pursue citizenship, and they should not be consigned to the bottom of the economic ladder — exactly the effect of shutting them out of college. Someone who has lived in Massachusetts since she was 6 is, for all practical purposes, a resident.

No, sir, not for “all practical purposes.” IT’s simply a question of whether or not you believe in the law, and believe in enforcing the law, and if you believe in pissing all over those who do follow the established processes whenever someone manages to make you feel bad. If you don’t like the way the law works, you work to change it — you do NOT simply ignore it. That is the idfference between being a responsible citizen, and being a soft-hearted, soft-headed twit.

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