Skip to comments.Arizona immigration law shows need for reform, Archbishop Chaput writes
Posted on 05/05/2010 7:05:37 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
(CNA/EWTN News).- Arizonas new immigration law has some flaws but shows the brokenness of the immigration system, Archbishop of Denver Charles J. Chaput has said. Urging Congress to act, he noted the dangers and wrongs of both illegal immigration and the response to it.
Writing in the May 5 edition of the Denver Catholic Register, the archbishop said Americans have a right to safety and to have solvent public institutions, but that cannot come at the cost of immigrants basic human rights.
Discussing the controversy about the Arizona state law, he advised Catholics to listen first to the leaders of the Arizona Catholic community.
They know the situation there best, he said, adding that their leadership should set the tone for our own response.
Illegal immigration is wrong and dangerous for everyone involved, he asserted. There is nothing good about people risking their lives to enter the U.S., and there is nothing good about Americans not knowing who crosses their borders, especially in an age of terrorism, drugs and organized violent crime.
There is also nothing good about people living in the shadows, or families being separated, or decent people being deported and having to start their lives all over again, sometimes in a country that they no longer -- or never did -- know.
Although flawed, Archbishop Chaput continued, the Arizona law unintentionally accomplishes the good of bringing immigration reform and its human issues to the forefront of the national discussion.
Noting issues like deportation of breadwinners, the division of families, and the anxiety of non-citizen children who grew up in the U.S., the archbishop declared:
Our current immigration system is now obviously broken. Congress needs to act.
He warned that no credible immigration reform will take place if the effort becomes an exercise in partisan maneuvering.
Both of our major political parties got our country into our current immigration mess. Both parties bear responsibility for fixing it. Neither will solve it alone, he explained.
Archbishop Chaput said that the recent debate over national healthcare and its deeply flawed legislation compromised confidence in some key federal lawmakers. In his view, Congress now faces an equally difficult task. This will require a transparency, patience, spirit of compromise and bipartisanship rarely seen in Washington in the best of seasons, he said.
If the immigration debate divides along parties or becomes entangled with very different and unnecessary issues like same-sex relationships, the archbishop warned, real people will suffer.
He encouraged people to remember that America was built by immigrants, who are a blessing for American society in its economy, culture and religious and moral life.
The American Catholic community has a long history of welcoming immigrants and helping them integrate into, and enrich, our nations life, his Denver Catholic Register column finished. Here in Colorado, the Church will continue that work with all of her energy.
Arizona's bishops -- including Bishops Kicanas, Wall and Phoenix Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted -- opposed the bill as it came through the Legislature. On April 26, Bishop Kicanas on his diocesan website called for the USCCB general counsel to review the legislation with an eye toward having the conference join friend-of-the-court briefs in support of overturning it.At America, the National Catholic Weekly:
Along with Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted of Phoenix and Bishop James S. Wall of Gallup, N.M., whose diocese includes parts of northern Arizona, Bishop Kicanas had called for a veto of the bill and for a more comprehensive approach at the federal level to solve immigration problemsIllegal immigration is wrong and dangerous for everyone involved, he asserted. There is nothing good about people risking their lives to enter the U.S., and there is nothing good about Americans not knowing who crosses their borders, especially in an age of terrorism, drugs and organized violent crime....Although flawed, Archbishop Chaput continued, the Arizona law unintentionally accomplishes the good of bringing immigration reform and its human issues to the forefront of the national discussion....Our current immigration system is now obviously broken. Congress needs to act.
“...but that cannot come at the cost of immigrants basic human rights.”
Archbishop should acknowledge that the new AZ law DOES NOT threaten “basic human rightst”!
We don’t need “reform.” What we need is to enforce the laws already on the books. Since the federal government won’t enforce the laws, Arizona had to.
It’s very simple. These folks are here illegally. When you do something against the law, you get punished. Why is that so difficult to understand?
the bishop REALLY needs THIS old priest’s book! :
This guy’s the King of Wafflers. “Bad for people to risk lives crossing border”, “Bad for Americans who don”t know who’s crossing border”...duh!
“Congress needs to act”
...been there, done that. They had years of opportunity! AZ was committing suicide NOT doing what they did!
Denver Quisling Ping
The credo upon which this country was founded states;
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
Tell me how Archbishop Chaput's statement differs from that.
The reasons behind these views needs to be discussed thoroughly.
Very good, and you are right.
There is nothing more useless and counter productive than someone that makes vague complaints about people trying to productively address a real but difficult problem, but is unwilling to put forth any alternative.
The Arizona law does not place any additional requirements on Immigrants than they already face under Federal law. Apparently the "human right" that the Bishop is trying to protect is the right to ignore international borders, and have immigrants ignore any immigration laws that might prevent them from living in the United States.
I am a strong proponent of legal immigration. I believe we should increase quotas for legal immigration AFTER we become more effective at enforcing our immigration laws.
I believe in leniency for otherwise law abiding illegal immigrants in the form of a limited time offer of not prohibiting them from applying to immigrate legally after they have been sent home.
But first we need to start upholding our laws.
Yes, that will cause hardship for people who have broken our laws. While I do believe in trying to be compassionate as reasonably possible, the responsibility for breaking those laws and the consequences fall upon those that broke them. The last amnesty made matters worse. We can't just keep letting people break the law and then granting amnesties for them which reward those that break the law.
That is not right. It's not fair. It's not moral.
The church is supposed to be about repentance and forgiveness. But it is also important that God doesn't forgive the unrepentant.
Send illegal immigrants home, and then give them a fair chance of applying to enter legally. Fair meaning the same opportunity as anyone else with their skills and in a similar situation.
It doesn't mean some kind of communist enforcement of equal opportunity.
Would you be denying your neighbor's kid their human rights if you refused to let them use your car, when you allow your own child to do so? Are they not equal?
Mexico is a country where there are far less opportunities for the poor. I would love for that to change considering that Mexico is not a poor country, and is home to of the worlds richest men, if not the worlds richest man.
However, the pursuit of happiness doesn't just mean material wealth.
Our Constitution, which is the document that defines the United States of America unquestionably treats citizens differently than immigrants. It also charges the Federal government with the responsibility of protecting our borders.
America is a wonderful country, but we simply cannot take everyone in the world that might want to come here.
When our country was founded there was great opportunity, but there was also not a huge government supported safety net. People had the opportunity to succeed or fail based on their own merits, but the government did not try to force some kind of mandated equal opportunity on people coming here.
Those with skills and strong work ethics mostly succeeded. Those without often failed, and in many cases starved as the result.
In that kind of harsh reality unchecked immigration works well.
In today's reality, those that cannot contribute more resources than they consume, become an increasing burden on our society, and in reality we can only bear so much.
Because of the Earned Income Tax Credit, even federal income taxes work as a form of welfare to the poor. People who make little not only don't contribute toward paying for the government services they receive, they actually get back more than they paid.
Workers do not have to be completely dead weight to be a drain on the productive. We have become a country where the majority votes for representatives will give them benefits paid for by those who earn more.
If all men are created equally, why are we not taxed equally? If not by equal amounts, or by excise taxes that are the same regardless of who buys the goods, at least an equal percentage of income.
Chaput isn't a proponent of equality. He has a warped view of compassion in which he wants the government to force us to help everyone regardless of if it is reasonable or practical.
The real solution to the problem of Mexico's lack of opportunity must occur in Mexico, and despite the deluded views of some liberal portions of the church, socialism won't solve those problems. You can't make people productive and self sufficient by continually giving people what they need.
I'm NOT saying that many immigrants from Mexico won't become, self sufficient and productive, and even make large contributions to our society. Some obviously will, and since we simply cannot take everyone, we need to give preference to those who show a higher likelihood to be productive.
Maybe if other countries start losing a lot of their best people, they will be forced to create more opportunities for those people at home. It might even give those people a greater chance at Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness at home.
....Chaput isn't a proponent of equality. He has a warped view of compassion in which he wants the government to force us to help everyone regardless of if it is reasonable or practical.
All great points.
They just need to stay in their own country and exercise their human rights there.