Published at 10:09 on 15 September 2011
First, it bears pointing out that illegal immigration only became a big issue when Dubya’s popularity started flagging, as a result of the Iraq War going badly and the economy slipping into a slump, and that the professed concern about it was whipped up by the same crowd that advocated Dubya’s policies.
Second, it bears pointing out that about 90% of the rhetoric is about the illegal immigrants themselves (who have been rebranded simply “illegals;” presumably the extra word “immigrants” had too much danger of humanizing those the Right was trying to demonize). Only a tiny fraction is about the illegal employers who give them work, despite it being every bit as illegal to employ an illegal immigrant as it is to become one. (Why aren’t those employers being called “illegals,” too?) Remember that the next time one of the anti-immigrant crowd tries to claim they principally care about playing by the rules and obeying the law.
Finally, as Derrick Jensen has pointed out, this whole obsession with tightly regulating the human crossing of borders while ignoring all the harm from inanimate objects (i.e. finished goods, raw materials, and wastes) crossing borders shows just what a bunch of xenophobic hypocrites those who rant about “illegals” typically are. This is particularly the case when they add ecological pretenses to their ranting. Unless, that is, for some reason you find it reasonable to believe that it is mere coincidence that they only raise concerns that are inconvenient to those with the least power and privilege in society.