Closing the Border Is a Pro-life Issue

March 05, 2024 00:30:46
Closing the Border Is a Pro-life Issue
Crisis Point
Closing the Border Is a Pro-life Issue

Mar 05 2024 | 00:30:46

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Hosted By

Eric Sammons

Show Notes

Many Catholics— and most Church leaders— support a more open border policy in the United States. But is that truly the most pro-life position?
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Episode Transcript

[00:00:14] Many Catholics and most church leaders support a more open border policy in the United States. But is that truly the most pro life position? That's what we're going to talk about today on crisis. Hello, I'm Eric Sim is your host and the inner chief of Crisis magazine. Before we get started, just want to encourage people to smash that like, button, subscribe to the channel, let other people know about it. We really do appreciate when you do that. It lets other people know about the show, and it tells the algorithm that people like me. They really like me. Also, you can follow us on social media at Crisismag at all the various social media channels. Subscribe to our email newsletter. Just go to crisismagazine.com, enter your email address on the page, and you'll get an email every day with our articles right in your inbox. Okay, so first of all, before I get started, really, I've had some frustrations with the video stream of this podcast where it drops and it doesn't give a great connection a lot, and I'm not sure why. I've done a lot of research trying to figure out reason is my connection here is great. In my office, I never have any other problems except for when I'm streaming here. I try a lot of stuff. I'm trying a different setup using actually different equipment, and we'll see if the whole thing goes down in flames or if it's actually going to work. And if anybody actually can see or hear this right now, maybe I'm just talking into the ether. Who knows? Maybe drop it in the chat that there are people actually watching right now. Okay, so the topic is, I titled this closing the border is a pro life issue. [00:01:49] Now, I will admit that I don't like to engage typically in clickbait, but I did this time. It was a purposely provocative title because of the fact that I hate it when people say all the time, so and so is a pro life issue. You know, this is a pro life issue. That's a pro life issue. The most egregious offender of that is Father James Martin, and he does this for everything. Anything that's his pet Project is a pro life issue. It doesn't matter what it is. If he's against jaywalking, being against jaywalking is a pro life issue. It doesn't matter what it is. And I actually wrote an article for catholic vote a few years ago, kind of explaining that that whole language is not very good. [00:02:33] Just trying to call everything a pro life issue. So do I really think closing the border is a pro life issue. [00:02:41] Not really. Not in the way that a lot of people use it. However, I do think it's the right stand to have, and it is the one that protects the most life. Like, I like to have pro life. The term really restricted to abortion, being against abortion, being against euthanasia, and really nothing else. But the fact is that lies will be saved if we close the border. Lies will be saved. Close the border. So you could say it's a pro life issue. Now, this is something I've come to a different conclusion. I used to have for many years, I was what you could call open ish borders, what I mean, but I wasn't like, full open borders. I knew we had to have some restrictions, but I generally followed the leadership of the church, of the Catholic Church, and the idea that in general, the borders should allow, we should be more open than many Republicans wanted it to be. [00:03:39] I supported the work of catholic charities in helping the immigrants who came here and things of that. [00:03:46] Yeah, in general, I was supportive of it. I even remember when I worked diocese down in Florida, helping out with immigrants who I knew were not here legally, just kind of getting started and stuff like that. So like I said, I was an openish border guy. I was more towards what most people consider the Democrat view than the republican view. But the truth is I came out not because I was a Democrat, I've never been a Democrat my whole life, but more from a libertarian standpoint. Like, in general, most libertarians are pro open borders or more open borders. And there's a lot of philosophical reasons, but mostly has to do with the fact that the state shouldn't have power almost at all, so they should not restrict who comes in and out of the country. [00:04:38] But you can see from this, I did not come to this idea of open border, close being open border or closed borders because of being a Republican or anything like that. I haven't been a Republican in years, and it definitely wasn't Trump. In fact, in 2016, when that was his big campaign, was build the wall, that was his campaign issue, the premier issue that got him elected. Frankly, I post that. I did not support him on that, and I didn't vote for Trump in 2016. Now, I wouldn't say that's the main reason I didn't vote for him, but it was a factor in why I didn't vote for him. And the truth is, I still don't like Donald Trump, and I still might not vote for him this year. I'm not voting for Biden or the Democrat, but the point is that I've come around, though, now to basically have probably an even more strict view of immigration than even Donald Trump has. I honestly think that at this point right now, we should basically shut down the border. We should make it so that almost nobody can get in. I mean, let's get a sense of our current situation. I'm going to put this up on the screen. This article I got from Daily Wire. [00:05:50] It says, upon taking office, President Joe Biden acted immediately to implement policies described by the Brookings Institute as the most progressive any president. [00:06:00] On Biden's very first day in office, he halted deportations, suspended the remain in Mexico policy for asylum seekers, and stopped construction of the border wall. He then signed executive orders reversing Trump's immigration policies. Biden also ended the title 42 policy employed by the Trump administration during the pandemic to turn migrants away for health reasons. The Biden administration then reinstated the catch and release policy, allowing the vast majority of illegals who cross the board to be released into the United States by September 2021. They announced illegal immigrants will no longer be deported simply for being in the United States illegally. Additionally, according to some reports, the Biden administration worked with Mexico's immigration service to facilitate illegal immigrant border crossings. Even if you don't take that last part, because that doesn't sound like it's completely verified, everything else clearly. He opened the are at if you're an illegal immigrant and you're not going to be deported, and you basically shut down all these ways that you can keep people out, it's going to have an effect. And sure enough, it did. Continuing with this article, the end result, predictably, has been catastrophic. The number of illegal aliens crossing the border skyrocketing on Biden's watch. During the Trump administration, US border Patrol encounters of illegals at the southern border fluctuated with 303,619 apprehensions 2017, and then basically 400,000 in 2018, 850 in 2019, 400,000 2020. So we have anywhere from about 300,000 to about 850,000 in each of those four years after Biden dismantled much of the Trump's border policies, the migrants encountered at our southern border exploded in 2021 to over 1.6 million, beating the previous record set in 2000. 2022 encounters of illegals at the boar blew away the previous year's record, with a total of 2.4 million illegals. And 2023 is yet another record, with a total of over 3.2 million illegal alien encounters nationwide. Now, my guess is that I'm pretty sure they're not saying this is the number of people who actually entered. They're saying, this is the number of ones that we know of, that we had encounters with, so to speak, in the language they use. [00:08:23] So what we're seeing here is, though, just a massive influx of illegal immigrants. It's massive. And I also want to put this in context. While this is happening, we are spending literally billions of dollars to defend the ukrainian border, a border on the other side of the world. We are fighting tooth and nail to defend with our resources, our money, yet at the same time, our border is completely porous and allowing millions to come in. [00:08:57] Now I want to kind of address this, why it is now I'm very much pro closed borders, and I used to be open borders, but why we should. And as a Catholic, why I think this. Why I think this is something that is just common sense, but also a catholic sense that Catholics should at least want to shut down the border as much as possible, if not maybe completely, but a lot more than it is now, obviously. First, I think it's important. Let's go ahead and go to the catechism, because I know it's very common for Catholics to, especially church leaders, to talk about immigration as if the only compassionate response, the only catholic response is basically to welcome the migrant. They will give a couple of Bible verses and just basically say, okay, our doors need to be open. Doors our borders need to be open. What does the catechism actually say in paragraph 22 41? It talks about immigration. It says, the more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent that they are able to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin. [00:10:04] Public authorities should see to it that the natural right is respected, that places a guest under the protection of those who receive him. [00:10:12] Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may take the exercise of the right to immigrate, subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants duties towards their country of adoption. Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens. Okay, there's a lot here, but let's just kind of hit some of the high points. First of all, this is a very balanced statement, and it makes sense that it's balanced because there is no catholic teaching, an absolute moral teaching, when it comes to immigration. Like, for example, when it comes to abortion. I've talked about this on the podcast before. There's absolutes here in the sense that absolutely abortion is always wrong. There are no exceptions to it. Something like immigration doesn't have those absolutes in the sense that it's always right or always wrong for somebody to immigrate from one nation to another, for a nation to accept them or not accept them, it depends on lots of factors which are clear in this. First of all, it says the prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent that they are able, to welcome the foreigner. And so to the extent that they are able is obviously a subjective thing. That is a prudential decision that is up to the nation. They have to determine, okay, are we able to accept more foreigners or are we not? So that's the first thing we see, is, yes, the more prosperous nations are obliged to welcome the foreigner, but only to the extent they're able. Consider, I mean, just the absurd situation where we just say, okay, everybody in the world, all 7 billion, or wherever it is, comes to America in one day. Clearly that's not possible. So the church is not saying, you just welcome everybody with no exceptions, with no rules at all. And it does say that for the sake of the common good, public authorities can restrict immigration for the sake of the common good. Obviously, if a country can't bring in all these people without it harming the citizens, maybe even the immigrants themselves, then they don't have to accept all of them. So we see the catechism does have a pretty balanced view here. I also notice at the end it talks about the obligation of immigrants because it says, like, the last thing it says is to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens. We have a situation in America where essentially, when you come to this country, you are now supported by the welfare state. And there's so many examples. This catholic charities actually practices most of this. They get government funding to do most of this. And so what happens is they're not assisting in carrying the civic burdens. They're actually adding to the civic burdens. And so we see that the catechism is making clear that's not what it's foreseeing. It's talking about. It talks about immigrants coming to the country. Isn't the idea that it just burdens the country even more, the citizens of the country? I also wouldn't note that at the top, it said the more prosperous nations are obliged. Now everybody, I think, would just automatically assume that that means America at the top of the list, because aren't we the most prosperous nation in the world? [00:13:37] I question if that's true. Even, I mean, if you think about the fact that our country is in incredible debt. I mean, we're just swimming in debt. If we were a household and you had the same percentages of debt and obligations and income and all that, we would not be considered prosperous. We would be considered bankrupt, we would be in dire straits and would not be able to help anybody if that was the case. Of course, we don't have a money printer just to print out some more money to try and make it all better in the short term. So I would argue that it's even possible we're not in that category of prosperous, more prosperous nations anymore, or at least we're going in that direction. [00:14:16] So ultimately, though, what we see is countries can restrict immigration for the common good. And that's important to remember that immigration is not a natural right, meaning nobody has an absolute natural right to immigrate to any country they choose. I do not have a right to immigrate to China or to England or to Argentina or anywhere like that. I don't have that right. All those countries can turn me down without committing a sin or doing something immoral. And so that's the first thing, because entry into a country, it does mean certain obligations of that country towards the person. And so therefore it's a positive action by the country. So there is no natural right. That's very important to remember. [00:15:05] And I think the analogy of a household works here as well. [00:15:11] I'm a father, husband and father. I have kids, my house. [00:15:16] If a dozen homeless people come to my house and they want to stay with me, I am not obliged morally to have to take them in. Now, this is going to sound cold blooded. It's going to sound like I'm not being a very good Catholic when I say this, but it's the reality. And I think everybody who's listening, anybody who isn't ideologically refusing to hear what I'm saying, would agree they'd do the same thing. Because I have priorities as a husband and father. My first priority is to my family, to protect them, to raise them, to provide for them. That's my first obligation as a catholic father. [00:15:55] I then have obligations beyond that. I have obligations to my community. I have obligations to my parish. I have obligations to my neighbors and my extended family. But those flow out of. And they're kind of concentric circles that are further away from me. Like my obligation to my country is actually less, in a way, than my obligation to my neighborhood. [00:16:17] So in other words, if something terrible happens in Utah, I don't have to do anything to help that out. I don't have to send money, but if my next door neighbor, something awful happens out, I don't have to help them, but I have a greater burden to help them. Something happens to one of my kids, I have the greatest burden to help them out. And so therefore, when, like twelve homeless people show up, I don't have to help them. Now, if I can, they come to me. I should try to help them, like find them somewhere to live or something like that. Find them services that will help them, but I don't have to take them into my house. That's just not an obligation I have. And it's the same thing when it comes to a country. They do not have to take anybody in. It's not an obligation that they have to take anybody in at all. [00:17:07] And so I think that the fact is that we have to remember that in the catholic world, this is so much just kind of waved aside, like, oh, you're just not being compassionate, you're not being loving. And the other big thing that said is, oh, you're being racist. [00:17:24] You're being racist. Well, if it's twelve homeless people from England, which is the land of my ancestors, come to me, I'm turning them down just as much as if they're coming from the Sudan or from Latin America. Race has nothing to do with it. We all know that racist is the term used just to try and shut down the argument. In fact, I would argue if you have not yet been called racist and you're in the public square, you're doing it wrong, because that means you're making a good argument that they cannot overcome. And so they're just going to throw that word at you, hoping you'll shut up. Well, we're not going to shut up. It's not racist to basically be like, no, we're not obligated to take care of the entire world. [00:18:07] And so I'd also argue that the obligations and the ability, I should say, of a country to accept immigrants, it goes in seasons, often. You'll see, I just saw us today from a bishop today. They'll talk about how we're a nation of immigrants. And it's true. Almost everybody in this country came from another country. [00:18:29] At one point in their ancestry, they came from another country. It's not like any of us had 1000 years ago, our people were here, except for, obviously, Native Americans. [00:18:39] But the fact is, that doesn't mean that our borders should always be the exact same openness. Like it should open, sometimes open 50% and always be like, that. No, that's not the way it works. Because there are seasons, because, again, as the catechism said, to the extent that they are able, to the extent a country is able, our country in the 19th century was much more able to bring in immigrants than it is in the 21st century. That's just a reality. I mean, just think about just physically, there was the entire west that was basically empty in the 19th century. We had plenty of land for them to go on. No problems as far as building that. [00:19:21] We were building infrastructure, getting the trains out there, all that stuff. Now, though, that's not the case. And we see this whenever, for example, a border state like Texas takes immigrants and takes them to a blue city, which I think is a great idea, and all of a sudden, they're like, we can't handle more people. What are you talking about? So there's seasons of immigration as well, in which a country can take. It might be true in 100 years due to technological advances, other changes, things like that, that we could take another influx of immigrants, but the fact is our systems just simply can't handle it. Part of that is because our government has gotten so big and so in debt, and it supports everybody. In the 19th century, you came here from another country. Guess what? [00:20:05] You figured out a way to support yourself real quick. There was no welfare system to take care of you. Yes, the churches would help on some level, but that was limited compared to today. Now you just come here, and you can just get supported by the government. That wasn't the case in the 19th century. So if in 100 years, all of a sudden we've abolished the welfare state, hopefully. And other things happen, yeah, maybe we could take more immigrants in then, but that's not what's going on today. So we have to recognize that idea of these seasons of immigration a country has. [00:20:37] And I do want to make clear. [00:20:41] Okay, actually, let me move on to the next point. The next point is the security issue. And I think this is a real issue that we have to take consideration. Look at what's happening in Europe with the influx of so many people from muslim countries. So many Muslims are coming, and it's a real security issue. Now, I'm not claiming every muslim is a terrorist, but I am claiming that there is a terrorist streak within Islam, in modern Islam, at least. And so you're more likely to have a terrorist. I mean, the reality is, if you have 10,000 Muslims versus 10,000 Catholics, there's a higher percentage of likely terrorists in the muslim camp than in the catholic camp. And yeah, that's politically incorrect. They'll get me shot down, be called a racist, I don't care. It's just a reality. [00:21:29] And the fact is, when you open up the borders and we're having these millions and millions of people coming in, you can't tell me every single one of them is a good actor. Yes, there are some people who are legitimately trying to support their family, legitimately trying to make a better life for themselves. I get that. [00:21:45] But the fact is we have millions and millions of people just pouring in with no background checks on them at all. [00:21:51] You're going to get bad actors. In fact, you're going to get a lot of bad actors. It attracts bad actors. [00:21:58] If bad actors know if we can get in here and take advantage of system and wreak havoc and do all our bad things, they're going to do it. It's like a big neon sign saying, please come, bad actors, please come to our country and do your worst. [00:22:16] So it's a real security threat that we have with the open borders. And this is where I think it becomes very much a pro life issue. [00:22:26] The purpose of a military is one thing and one thing only. Protect the country. [00:22:33] Protect the country. Yet it's not to expand the country. It's not to be the world's cop. It's not to help other countries. It's to protect our country. That is the one job of the military. Yet our military is spread throughout the world engaging in conflicts that we have no business being involved in protecting other countries borders. And yet they're not even on our own border, not any significant amount to really stop the flood. In fact, we're trying to make it so there's less and less of them on the border. On our own border. This is something that is just one of these things. There's certain things today that if you take a step back and just look at objectively, they're just absurd. And this is one of them. The idea that we have the strongest military in the world and we don't even use it to protect our own borders, but yet we go all around the world trying to protect other countries borders. [00:23:33] It's just absurd if you think about it. But because we're neglecting our duties to protect our own country, lives are in danger. The fact of the matter is that this is a real security issue that we have to take into consideration and have to realize that our military, if it's going to be stationed anywhere, it should be stationed on our borders, not the borders of other countries, not in other meant I'm a radical on this. I think that every single us military member should be brought home. I don't think we should have bases anywhere in the world. But even if you're not that radical, you got to agree that the primary focus of our men and women in the military should be, there shouldn't be women in the military, as an aside, but that's the way it is right now. Our men and women in the military should be protecting our country, physically protecting our country by being on our borders and preventing people from coming over. I mean, not only are we not doing that, but we're literally having the federal government trying to stop a state from protecting its border. And this is another issue that's kind of a side issue, but it's very much related to the immigration issue, is a state's right to defend its own border. [00:24:51] The idea that Texas does not have the right to defend its own border because the federal government tells them not to is also mean. The governor of Texas, his duty is to protect one of them is to protect the people of Texas. So if he sees a means in which the Texas is going to be harmed and he's just told no, you aren't allowed to do anything about that, that's ludicrous. And so states obviously should have the right to protect their borders. [00:25:29] Now, I want to weigh in another aspect of this immigration debate that is often kind of delicately walked around because, again, we'll be called racist if we talk about it. I remember years ago reading some Pat Buchanan. I can't remember if it was a book or some articles or what it was. [00:25:49] And he wrote very strongly about the cultural aspects of mass and immigration. And I remember thinking at the time that I was kind of queasy about it. I kind of felt like it was quasi racist, what he was saying. Now, I love Pat Buchanan. I've always loved Pat Buchanan, but I did think that on this one, I think he's kind of pushing it. Well, call me a buchananite now, because I think he's absolutely right. Now, the first thing I want to state is that american culture is crap. I mean, let's be honest. It's degenerate. It's awful. I'm not defending that modern american culture. Yet at the same time, America and american culture is based upon ultimately on western civilization, on the great european civilizations that were founded by the Catholic Church, by Catholics, and were in conjunction with the Catholic Church, western civilization, which dates back, of course, even before medieval times, before the Catholic Church, to the great greek and roman cultures and things like, but basically western civilization as we know it is christian and it's very much in keeping with the Catholic Church. And so the fact is that by allowing massive immigration from other cultures in, we are weakening the foundations of western civilization. That's just the reality is we're weakening that. And so I do think that we have to recognize that allowing many, many members of islamic religion or other religions into this country can have a detrimental effect. Now, I will also be, if I'm being honest, allowing people from Latin America, catholic countries, I mean, if you let more of them in that are a catholic culture, that might be a good thing. So I'm not saying it's all bad, but I am saying that a country absolutely does have a right to protect its culture. And so it can be discriminatory in who it lets in. Because remember, we've been talking about illegal immigration here. There is legal immigration that if we close the border, basically what I'm saying is we're closing out all illegal immigration. We still could have some legal immigration, a very small amount, I think. I see no problem with being discriminatory towards certain cultures. I'm not saying certain races, but I am saying that, for example, if people from muslim countries in Middle east want to come here, we're less likely to receive them than somebody from a Germany or a France or an England or something like that, or a Spain. [00:28:31] I think that's legitimate because I think a country has the ability, the right to protect its culture. Because ultimately, although our culture has gotten so downhill in this country, ultimately its foundations are what we want to return to. [00:28:44] But because we've made it so weak, it's now susceptible to be overtaken by another culture, a non catholic culture, a non christian culture. And that's what I think, honestly, we have to avoid. We do everything we can to avoid. [00:28:58] Okay, so I think I'm going to basically wrap it up here. But I just want to reiterate the major points. And that is, according to the Catholic Church, a country does not have to have open borders. In fact, it makes it very clear for the common good and based upon its ability to handle immigrants, it can close its borders. It can close its borders completely. It can close its borders a little bit. A lot. It's a prudential decision. Do not be guilted into thinking, oh, I'm catholic, I have to be for open borders. That is not true. [00:29:28] And I do think that ultimately it's a pro life issue because it's a security threat. When you basically just say it's an open door. It's, again, the analogy of the household. If I just have an open door and I don't care who comes in or out of my house, it's a security threat. It's a security threat to my family. Nobody, any father who did that had a basically open door, unlocked doors, open windows. And let's say they lived in an area with lots of people around, stuff like that. [00:29:56] They're a terrible father. We'd all think that, well, a country that does that is a terribly run country. And so we really do have to rethink that and really work to close the border as much as possible. I think that's the pro life thing to do, is close the border, make very clear what are the requirements to enter into this country and then enforce them very strictly. I think that's kind of the path forward and what we're going to have to do. Okay, well, that's it for now. Again, closing the border, it's a pro life issue. So take that. Father James Martin until next time, everybody. God love.

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