It seems to lead the news every night, gobble up space on social media, and divide ethnically diverse communities. It even creates tension in institutions that should be in agreement, like churches. For the sake of argument, I am going to make the definition of immigration simple: anyone from anywhere who wants to move to or resettle in another country. What are the rights of the immigrants? Should they be allowed to come to America, Germany, France, or other country of their choice and say, "I'm here. You have to let me in." What are the rights of the receiving countries? Should they be allowed to choose who they wish to accept, and doing so rejecting others, into their country?
This debate seems to have no happy medium. And we seem to deliberately argue this issue on the extremes. Everyone potential immigrant is either a terrorist or a widow with three children. Those who argue for stricter immigration lawas inevitably roll out the terrorist or gang member who snuck across the Rio Grande to commit crimes. Those who argue for more relaxed immigration laws put up the sad mother with three children. These extremes do nothing to solve the problem and deliberately misframe the debate, largely for political reasons.
Let's avoid the political for a second, or forever. Both sides have a point. We should not have to take in the terrorist or criminal and we should have a system in place that ensures they cannot sneak in. We should, in a country with adundance, have compassion on the widow with three children. My position has always been that there is a workable solution, but politics keeps up from implementing it.
A strict vetting process is a good idea. The problem? The criminals and terrorists who bog it down. Unfortunately, the truly worthy of compassion and admission to the United States, or any other nation, have to wait in a longer line. But is there any other way?
A wall is a good idea. Why? Because it makes it harder for the less-than-honorable "immigrant" to sneak in. The downside is it also keeps the worthy immigrant out.
The sensible solution really is simple. Secure the border. Increase the efficiency and speed of the vetting process. Remove the illegal immigrants who broke the law. Reward the law-abiding immigrants with a quicker transition and give them access to the American dream. Stop using the discussion as a political weapon. That seems to me a good compromise. How hard is that?