Op-Ed: Even a Century Ago, Americans Realized the Danger of Unchecked Immigration

Way back in 1913, American economist Frank Julian Warne, author of “The Immigrant Invasion,” issued a stern warning about the danger of unrestrained immigration. “Misplaced sympathy quite frequently leads to false reasoning, and false reasoning can quite easily result in national suicide.” First up, Warne acknowledged that “to the immigrant America owes much.”
“The immigrant has built our railroads, tunnelled our mountains and rivers, bridged our streams, felled our forests, mined our coal and iron and copper, erected our factories and industrial plants, built our skyscrapers, even our cities themselves, and in a score and more ways aided in our material development.”
Then he added, “But this debt to those that have come cannot be paid by admitting all the oppressed. … This is especially true when to continue immigration in its present huge volume is to risk losing much of that progress.” Regrettably, “misplaced sympathy” and “false reasoning” about the current illegal migration crisis at the southern border have figured prominently in the Biden presidency to date. Biden’s grievous mistakes Biden’s policy depravities include his abrupt and irresponsible cancellation of the border wall project, his turning a blind eye to child trafficking and his careless attitude toward the drug deaths that have skyrocketed thanks to the unimpeded drug trafficking across the porous border. In the month of June this year, 15,271 unaccompanied children crossed the border illegally. Migrant smuggling has become a massive and lucrative enterprise along the border. Additionally, there is the irony of President Joe Biden, unwilling to secure his own border, sending another $1 billion to Ukraine to be spent on, among other things, “coastal defense weapons” to secure the Ukrainian border. [firefly_poll] Is the USA no longer a self-respecting sovereign nation? One of the essential duties of any self-respecting nation is to exercise control over its borders and determine the numbers and kinds of people to whom temporary or permanent entry is granted. Regrettably, the Biden administration has facilitated the entry of over 3 million foreign illegals who have been dispersed across state borders without the consultation or permission of individual states. Warne may have been partly right when he wrote that unregulated migration is an invasion:
“The present-day immigration to the United States is not by organised armies coming to conquer by the sword. It is made up of detached individuals, or at most, of family or racial groups, afoot, the sword not only sheathed but also entirely discarded by those who have no idea of battling with arms for that which they come to seek.”
What is happening today may sometimes look like an invasion over land. But most illegal migrants are coming in a brave and legitimate search for a better life. There is something very wrong, nevertheless, with a government enabling massive illegal entry into a sovereign country and allowing the lawful protective measures in place to be overwhelmed or evaded. In allowing these illegalities and evasions to continue unabated, the real scandal is that the Biden administration is guilty of betraying its own country and its laws. The “sympathy” argument Warne understood clearly what is still true today: that those who favor the further restriction of immigration must overcome a very powerful argument.
“The sympathy argument comes partly from those immigrants who have succeeded here and who are familiar with the intolerable economic conditions from which they fled and by which their relatives and fellow countrymen are still oppressed. It comes also from the humanist who knows no political boundaries but would have all persecuted peoples come here and partake of the blessings of liberty and freedom.”
But we all know by now that the vast majority of migrants currently crossing the southern border illegally are economic immigrants, not genuine refugees or asylum seekers. The relevant question is how many migrants a country can successfully integrate within its existing infrastructure, economy and local communities. As Hugh Gordon affirms, “A country that does not enforce its borders gives up on the idea of being a country. For many on the Left, that’s the point.” Economic and social demolition a prerequisite for Build Back Better? It seems that the Biden administration’s radical Build Back Better policy actually requires the reckless demolition of the country as we know it. The left is intent on the willful destruction of the political stability and the Judeo-Christian-based moral integrity of the United States of America. Biden’s Marxist agenda can’t take a triumphant foothold until the U.S. social inheritance of civilized values is dismantled and the economy weakened. Francis Walker, writing in the Atlantic Monthly in June 1896, understood even back then the dangers of unrestricted immigration.
“For it is never to be forgotten that self-defence is the first law of nature and of nations. … Charity begins at home; and while the people of the United States have gladly offered an asylum to millions upon millions of the distressed and unfortunate of other lands and climes, they have no right to carry their hospitality one step beyond the line where American institutions, the American rate of wages, the American standard of living, are brought into serious peril. All the good the United States could do by offering indiscriminate hospitality … would not compensate for any permanent injury done to our Republic.”
Wise words! Let’s heed them. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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