(originally launched into cyberspace on 08/18/2007)
Wow, did I ever hit a nerve with some people with that last e-mail,
about the bogus concept of "illegal immigration." A few people even
unsubscribed, which I always find interesting: at what point does
someone not want to HEAR opposing views? And why? Anyway, just in
case I wasn't clear enough, I'll jam the knife into that nerve
again, in a more detailed manner.
Let's use a specific scenario, instead of sloshing around vague
generalities: Juan is an American citizen (of Mexican ancestry) who
lives in El Paso, and owns a restaurant. His cousin, Carlos, lives
just across the river, in Mexico. Juan wants Carlos to come live in
his big house, and work at his restaurant. Carlos wants that too.
Question: Do you personally have the right to take a gun, go to
Juan's house, and tell Carlos that he CANNOT live in that house,
and CANNOT work in that restaurant?
Answer the question, at least to yourself, before you continue.
Once again, you can hide behind various "authority" mythology, like
"Constitutions" and "laws," but what it comes down to in reality is
that if you forcibly chased Carlos away, YOU are the one initiating
violence; YOU are the one oppressing someone who has done nothing
to harm you or anyone else; YOU are the bad guy. And if you ask
someone ELSE to do the thuggery for you (like "government"), you
are still the bad guy.
If you want to disagree with me, I welcome your comments, though I
make one request: prefaced your criticisms with a specific ANSWER
to the above question: Do YOU, yourself, without any assistance of
the cult of "authority" or "law," have the right to forcibly evict
Interestingly, those who think it's okay to use violence to keep
people from crossing the invisible line--including most of the
people who wrote e-mails to me disagreeing with my last message--
like to CHANGE the question, to try to justify their position.
"They come here and rob us!" Oh, really? Every one of them? Robbing
you is a crime, and you have the right to use force to stop someone
from doing that (and the right to hire someone else to do it). If
by "rob" us you mean accepting "government" goodies, that's bad
too, but no worse than the millions of Americans who do it. But
what if, like the hypothetical Carlos above, the person just wants
to come earn a living? Then what excuse is there for forcibly
Trouble is, real freedom can be really inconvenient, because it
means letting OTHER people be free, too. For example, it would be
rather inconvenient for me (and lots of you) if a thousand non-
English-speaking Mexicans moved into my neighborhood. I wouldn't
understand them, couldn't communicate with them, I would have very
little in common with most of them, and would probably have very
different political, religious, and other beliefs than they do.
Does that give me the right to FORCIBLY keep those people out?
In response to my last message, a couple people used the bogus
logic that is often used to try to defend drug prohibition: if you
don't want it forcibly combatted, you must LIKE it. That does not
follow. I think that frying your brain repeatedly is a really bad
idea. But I have no right to use FORCE to prevent you from doing
so. In case you're wondering, I've never used narcotics, or even
alcohol, so this isn't just a case of me wanting to be allow to get
wasted--it's a matter of principle. The same is true of
"immigration" issues: I wouldn't want my neighborhood overrun with
people completely unlike me, but I have no right to FORCIBLY stop
them from buying property here, or getting a job here.
Incidentally, a few people tried to blame my "extremist" view on
the "immigration" thing to my own treatment at the hands of
"government," or my imprisonment. I hate to deprive anyone of their
easy excuse to get out of thinking about things, but I have
believed this for years. As ALL of my "political" (or anti-
political) beliefs, it's simply a logical deduction based on the
radical idea that every individual owns himself, and no one owns
So many political discussions hide the stark reality under piles of
euphemisms, rhetoric, and authoritarian-speak. (The ultimate
intellectual cop-out is, "But it's the law!" So? ANYTHING can be
made into "law." That doesn't make it right.) When the
indoctrination and thought-mangling is stripped away, and the plain
truth is stated, it scares the heck out of people. While I got a
few rational disagreements in response to my last message, I got a
lot more emotional tantrums. Why? Because I took the discussion in
a direction they didn't WANT to think about.
So let's state in clear, literal terms what the two "sides" of the
discussion are advocating:
1) Some advocate that violence be used to stop people from crossing
an imaginary line, or to send people back over that imaginary line,
based upon where those people were born, and upon whether they have
the permission of politicians to cross that line.
2) Some (including me) say that such force is unjustified.
So, would YOU feel justified, without any authoritarian
intellectual crutches to hide behind ("law," "authority," etc.), in
pulling a gun on the single mother and her two-year-old son who
just waded across a river to try to escape the political and
economic mess of Mexico? If you would do that, then at least you
can consistently advocate that "government" do it. If not, then
you're being hypocritical, and using the myth of "authority" to do
things you know to be wrong.
And don't try the over-generalization and/or guilt-by-association
excuse. "A lot of them come over and commit crimes, and rob us, and
murder us!" So do Americans, but you won't hear anyone saying that
we should ALL be deported because we fit in a statistical category
that includes some bad people. If individual people commit actual
crimes--the kinds with victims, not the made-up "legislative" kind--
then using force to stop them is justified. But you don't have the
right to use violence against someone because you theorize that
they MIGHT do something bad if you don't. (Think how much you
protest when those in "government" treat YOU as "guilty until
I prefer to be around people like me (all two of them). Almost
everyone prefers to be with their own kind, though their "kind"
doesn't necessarily mean their race: it can mean a religion, a
cultural background, a philosophical outlook, etc. In every major
city, you can see that a LOT of people engage in voluntary
segregation. People are more comfortable when they live among like-
minded people, and there's nothing particularly evil about that.
And THAT is the tendency which politicians exploit via the
"immigration" debate. They want Americans to have the attitude that
this huge piece of dirt (defined by an absolutely arbitrary line)
is "OUR" country, and that those dang foreigners don't BELONG here.
(Never mind that if you go back a few generations, 99% of us are
"foreigners.") The fear--whether real or not--of your town being
overrun by people NOT LIKE YOU is used as a tool to get you to
support "government" power, via "immigration law." But, like EVERY
"problem"--real or imagined--which "government" pretends to fight
against, those in power have NO intention of fixing anything. They
merely milk the problem for all it's worth, to get YOU to give them
power. And a LOT of Americans fall for it, just as they fall for
the tyrants' fear-mongering about poverty, and health care, and
terrorism, and every other problem imaginable.
Sadly, most pro-freedom people even fall back on insisting that "we
NEED government to do THIS thing..." And so the precedent is set:
if the people are convinced that authoritarian control, and a
corresponding loss of individual freedom, is "necessary," then it's
okay. Of course, ANY increase in state power can be--and will be--
deemed "necessary" by those who seek the power. As a result, once
we accept one INCH of the idea that "government" violence is
legitimate where it's really "needed," we're on a one-way road to
totalitarianism. If, on the other hand, we take the "extreme" view
that either YOU AND I have the right and responsibility to fix a
problem, or NO ONE does, then freedom survives. Once you let ANY
problem--real or imagined--scare you into surrendering your
complete self-ownership over to some tyrant masquerading as a
savior, then you have lost the only principle that matters, and
when YOU find yourself at the receiving end of some fascist's
"necessary" oppression, you will have no right to complain.
(P.S. I oppose every politician's side of every dispute, as their
own power is ALWAYS their main--if not their only--priority. So
don't go trying to stick me in a political camp. The tyrants who
want "amnesty" for "illegals" want it so they can get more people
here to vote for them, and more people to tax. The other tyrants
want to scare the heck out of you, and get elected by promising to
combat "illegal" immigration. Whatever your personal opinions, if
you think ANY politician has YOUR interests at heart, you need to