Saturday, October 10, 2009
Do you ever wish you understood the question of immigration better? Do you want to understand why it is the right of all law-abiding people to immigrate to the United States and why it is the right of all American employers to be allowed to employ an immigrant if they so desire? Do you feel conflicted about the right to immigrate to this great country regardless of your wealth and education versus the need to screen out criminals and how we can do this? The article Immigration and Individualism by Craig Biddle at The Objective Standard lays down the philosophical ground for why open immigration is moral and of benefit to America.
...Foreigners have a right to move to America, and Americans have a right to hire, contract, and associate with them by mutual consent. A government that prohibits or limits immigration thereby initiates force against would-be immigrants—and against those Americans who want to associate with them—and thus violates the rights of both parties. The principle of individual rights forbids this prohibition and mandates open immigration.
Individuals possess rights not by virtue of their geographic location or national origin or genetic lineage, but by nature of the fact that in order to live they must be free to act on their basic means of living: their judgment. This principle, in conjunction with the fact that rights can be violated only by means of physical force, gives rise to the need for a government—an institution with a monopoly on the use of physical force in a given geographic area—the proper purpose of which is to protect individual rights. A government serves this function by banning the use of physical force from social relations—and by using retaliatory force as necessary against those who initiate (or threaten to initiate) force. But a government has a moral right to use force only in retaliation and only against those who initiate its use; it has no moral right to initiate force against anyone—citizen or non-citizen, within or without its border—for any reason.
America's border is not properly a barrier for the purpose of keeping foreigners out; it is properly a boundary designating the area in which the U.S. government must protect rights. Rights-respecting foreigners who want to cross that boundary in order to enjoy the relative freedom and abundant opportunity in America have a moral right to do so. Likewise, American citizens who want to associate with foreigners in rights-respecting ways—whether through friendship, romance, recreation, or commerce—have a moral right to do so. And Americans who do not want to associate with foreigners have a moral right not to associate with them. But no one—including the government—has a moral right to prevent anyone from acting on his judgment
To prohibit a person from immigrating to the U.S. is to violate his right to act on his judgment; it is to retard his ability to live a life proper to man; it is to commit a moral crime. (READ AT CAPMAG)