I believe most people, even my open-borders libertarian friends, would not say that everyone on the planet had a right to live in the U.S. That being the case suggests there will be conditions that a person must meet to live in the U.S. Then the question emerges: Who gets to set those conditions? Should it be the United Nations, the European Union, the Japanese Diet or the Moscow City Duma? I can't be absolutely sure, but I believe that most Americans would recoil at the suggestion that somebody other than Americans should be allowed to set the conditions for people to live in the U.S.Cartoon Credit: Michael Ramirez.
What those conditions should be is one thing and whether a person has a right to ignore them is another. People become illegal immigrants in one of three ways: entering without authorization or inspection; staying beyond the authorized period after legal entry; or by violating the terms of legal entry. Most of those who risk prosecution under Arizona's new law fit the first category — entering without authorization or inspection.
Probably, the overwhelming majority of Mexican illegal immigrants are hardworking, honest and otherwise law-abiding members of the communities in which they reside. It would surely be a heart-wrenching scenario for such a person to be stopped for a driving infraction, have his illegal immigrant status discovered and face deportation proceedings. Regardless of the hardship suffered, being in the U.S. without authorization is a crime.
RELATED: At NYT, "Immigration Law in Arizona Reveals G.O.P. Divisions" (via Memeorandum). Putting the newspaper's leftist spin aside, I'm surprised that Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell opposes the Arizona law. Jan Brewer and Sarah Palin have formed a winning team on the issue, and it can only be local open-borders constituencies pulling those normally-reliable GOP stalwarts to the left. (Also interesting is the discussion of California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman, who's been hammered by Steve Poizner on the issue. Whitman's flip-flopping illustrates perfectly how she'll be a Schwarzennegger clone if elected --- a likely scenario, dreadfully so.)