When someone from another country becomes a U.S. citizen, no one objects that they then sponsor their spouse and minor children for legal residency. But then the chain begins. Ollie ollie oxen free parents; siblings, their spouses and children; and adult children, their spouses and children. Once these folks have citizenship or green cards, they can sponsor yet more family members.

That’s a mighty long chain, and it’s what has caused legal immigration numbers to quadruple from about 250,000 in the 1950s and 1960s to more than 1 million annually since 1990. Chain migration makes up two thirds of our legal immigration system.

There are a lot of reasons conservatives object to chain migration, not least of which is the more than 50 percent of new immigrants who go on social services within the first five years of being here. Chain migration is a significant part of why Donald Trump was elected: he’s against it.

The Left, on the other hand, thinks the term itself—chain migration—is the problem, i.e., politically incorrect (gag me) because it mentions “chains.” Give me a break. Is “daisy chain” racist now, too? What about a “chain letter?” “Chain of fools?” So, instead of chain migration, the Left calls it family reunification, and boy, do they milk it.

If you watch cable news, you’ve heard snarky talking heads saying things like, “I thought Republicans were all about family values and here they are wanting to interfere with family reunification.” Well, I can be just as snarky, and I say, “Since when are we responsible for reunifying families who have voluntarily opted to split up?” The only reason a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident wants to reunify with family members from the home country is that they left those family members in that home country to come here. Oh, well. Family reunification is wonderful in principle, but it’s not the only principle.

Since when are we responsible for protecting children from their parents’ poor judgments? If the bank forecloses on a house, the children don’t get to keep the loan because it wasn’t their fault their parents defaulted. If parents rob a store or assault another person, that judgment takes them to jail no matter the impact on their children. If parents chose to break the law and bring their minor children along with them when they illegally entered (or refused to leave) our country, it’s the parents’ fault not Uncle Sam’s.

I realize that most Americans think DACA recipients should be regularized, but I’m talking about principles. If we in our largesse wish to regularize DACA recipients, that’s a reflection of our national character. I resent the DACA recipients who demand regularization as if we owe them something. As if we’re the ones who put them in an untenable situation.

To DACA recipients: Protesting at Disneyland that you’re entitled to legalization is beyond the pale. If you’re ticked off about the situation you’re in, take it up with your parents. But don’t expect us to reward your parents for breaking our laws by rolling out the red carpet for the whole clan. That is the pale beyond the pale.

photo credit: marcoverch Silberschmuck vor weißem Hintergrund via photopin (license)

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