Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Guess Who Said This

Quick Quiz: Which prominent American politician said the following (I paraphrase):
[T]here are some areas that the federal government ... should address and address strongly. One of these areas is the problem of illegal immigration. After years of neglect, I will take a strong stand to stiffen the protection of our borders. I will increase border controls by 50 percent and increase inspections to prevent the hiring of illegal immigrants. I will also sign an executive order to deny federal contracts to businesses that hire illegal immigrants.

I want to be very clear about this: We are still a nation of immigrants; we should be proud of it. We should honor every legal immigrant here, working hard to become a new citizen. But we are also a nation of laws.
If you said Donald Trump give yourself an F. If you ascribed the passage to any Republican at all give yourself another F. The correct answer is President William Jefferson Clinton in his 1996 State of the Union address. You can see the video here.

It's funny that there was no apoplexy on the left when President Clinton promised to crack down on illegal immigration, but when Donald Trump, or anyone else for that matter, criticizes the Obama administration for not securing our border and allowing millions of illegal entrants into the country, progressives respond as though Trump had endorsed torturing puppies.

There's an interesting psychology at play in this double standard that can perhaps be summed up this way:

When a liberal Democrat says we need to enforce our immigration law he's principled. When a moderate Democrat says we need to enforce our immigration law she's practical. When a Republican says we need to enforce our immigration law he's a pig-headed bigot.

Or, to say the same thing, whether we agree with what's being proposed or done all depends on who it is who's proposing or doing it. This is, unfortunately, a kind of tribal thinking typical of adolescents and intellectual primitives, but it should have no place among those who lead our nation and influence its policy.