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Borderline insanity: Lies about the fence
Daily Inter Lake ^ | 29Oct06 | Frank Miele

Posted on 11/02/2006 4:54:16 PM PST by claudiustg

On Thursday, President Bush signed into law the so-called Secure Fence Act, which authorizes (but does not fund) 700 miles of double fencing between the United States and Mexico.

An earlier Homeland Security appropriations bill earmarked $1.2 billion for border security, so a down payment on the fence is available, but there is some question as to whether that money will or won’t be used for the fence, which would cover approximately one-third of our border with Mexico.

One thing is certain, however: The fence represents a great divide — not between Mexico and the United States, but between those who believe in self-defense and those who don’t. Remarkably, there is a question these days as to whether or not it is appropriate to maintain control over who is allowed into one’s own country.

The president of Mexico, Vicente Fox, says he doesn’t think it is right for the United States to keep Mexicans from entering our country illegally. He feels there is some unspecified human right that allows Mexicans to move north whenever they feel like it, although there is oddly enough no corresponding human right for Americans to move south when the migratory itch hits.

Fox feels there is something unseemly about the idea of a fence. He has called it an “embarrassment,” and said it is proof that “the United States does not see immigration as a subject that corresponds to both countries.”

Say what?

Apparently it is not an “embarrassment” for the Mexican government to instruct its citizens on how to break U.S. law, as routinely happens. And since when did immigration become an issue of concern to the countries that are losing their citizens? They don’t have any say in the matter whatsoever, and never have. The Irish government did not instruct the United States to accept Irish immigrants during the potato famine. The Vietnamese government did not instruct the United States to accept Vietnamese refugees during and after the Vietnam War.

Immigration is a privilege, which means that it must be granted. It is not earned. It is not guaranteed. It is not immutable. Every nation maintains control over who may enter its borders. This is prudent, wise and responsible.

Yet the president-elect of Mexico, Felipe Calderon, says the United States committed a “grave error” in planning to construct a fence, and he was one of many commentators who compared the border fence to the Berlin Wall.

So let’s do away with this odious comparison once and for all. It is the most common of several phony arguments against the border fence, most of which rely on emotional rhetoric in a blatant attempt to shame proponents of border security.

But despite the glib analogy, a border fence is simply not the Berlin Wall. There is a fundamental difference between building a wall to keep people out and building a wall to keep people in. If you don’t believe me, perhaps you should canvass the inmates at Deer Lodge and the millionaires at Iron Horse.

Likewise, there is a vast difference between the Berlin Wall, which was intended to prevent people from escaping their virtual imprisonment in a dreary economic gulag, and the proposed border fence between Mexico and the United States.

The United States is not building a fence to prevent its people from escaping to freedom, but rather to protect its citizens from a huge economic and political burden which could very well bankrupt us as a nation.

Second phony issue: You can’t keep people out with a fence.

Of course, you can’t keep people out with a fence! That’s because they are PEOPLE — you know, the most intelligent species on the planet, capable of reasoning and skulduggery, and even digging a tunnel.

But hey, you know what? You can’t keep bank robbers out of a bank either, but that doesn’t mean there is a bank in the world that doesn’t have security measures such as steel bars, armor, reinforced concrete and high-tech gadgetry including cameras, motion detectors, heat sensors, and stuff you and I never heard of.

Third phony issue: It’s too expensive to build a fence.

Who’s kidding who? We can afford to fight a war in Iraq for $400 billion, but we can’t afford to build a fence for $5 billion? The richest nation in the world, with the best technology and the greatest workers, can’t build a wall that’s 1951 miles long? That’s pretty pathetic when you recall that the ancient Chinese built a nearly 4,000-mile long wall to protect themselves from northern invaders. I wasn’t alive 2,700 years ago when that wall was started, but I doubt there were very many Chinese folks complaining about the emperor’s efforts to defend his people from an alien onslaught.

Fourth phony issue: If you are in favor of keeping non-citizens out of the United States, you must be a racist.

Because racism is so widely despised, this argument has replaced patriotism as the last refuge of the scoundrel. Whenever you are about to lose an argument based on the facts, you can quickly accuse your opponent of racism, fold your arms and glower. It doesn’t matter what your opponent says; you have won the argument ipso facto. And moreover, you are immune from being accused of “playing the race card.” You played the “racist card” and that is apparently a joker in the deck which can trump any other card whatsoever.

The fact is that culture, not race, is an important part of the border dispute. But that is the whole point of borders. They separate different populations which have their own unique identity. If we want to do away with the varieties of human culture through some sort of New World Order homogenization and re-education program, then it would make more sense to do away with the border between the United States and Canada first since we share much more heritage in common with Canada than with Mexico.

But as a student of anthropology, I can tell you that the more homogenized we become, the poorer we become as a people, as a race — the human race — and the less prepared we are to cope with the many varieties of chaos and calamity that have befallen us in the past and will befall us again in the future.

There is also nothing racist about wanting to protect one’s own culture. Otherwise the French would be called racists instead of lauded for their jealous husbandry of their considerable cultural treasure. Vive la difference! as they like to say over there.

Indeed liberal-minded proponents of diversity should take note. If you really believe in diversity, if you honestly value variety in human experience, then you should be able to see the importance of a fence. We may inevitably become one big global village, but anyone who has ever lived in a big city like New York can tell you that what makes it exciting and educational and valuable is that it is not all alike. When New York loses its Chinatown and its Little Italy and its Spanish Harlem and its other ethnic neighborhoods, then New York will be poorer.

The same goes for the community of nations — and one nation in particular, one cultural identity we should not allow to perish from this earth, is the American identity, which is the flowering of many traditions into a unique blossom of liberty, tolerance and diversity. If we surrender that identity, if we do not cherish it and protect it with all our might, then not only will we be poorer, but so will the whole world.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; US: Montana
KEYWORDS: aliens; border; fence
Common sense from Kalispell, Montana.
1 posted on 11/02/2006 4:54:19 PM PST by claudiustg
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To: claudiustg

According to Duncan Hunter (who is one of the authors of the legislation - has been heard telling Hugh Hewitt that THE FENCE IS ALREADY FUNDED.

So somebody's lying .. and I wouldn't bet on it being Hunter.

2 posted on 11/02/2006 4:56:30 PM PST by CyberAnt (Drive-By Media: Fake news, fake documents, fake polls)
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To: CyberAnt

---So somebody's lying .. ---

There are a lot of different stories out about funding. Do a search.

3 posted on 11/02/2006 5:13:23 PM PST by claudiustg (Iran delenda est.)
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To: claudiustg

Just get the fence built NOW.

4 posted on 11/02/2006 5:17:30 PM PST by jocko12
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To: claudiustg; CyberAnt
This may not shed much light on the subject, but here is some funding and timeline information:

Bush Signs Border Fence Bill

The measure Bush put into law Thursday [Border Security Fence, HR 6061] before heading for campaign stops in Iowa and Michigan offers no money for the fence project covering one-third of the 2,100-mile border.


... a homeland security spending measure the president signed earlier this month makes a $1.2 billion down payment on the project.


The money also can be used for access roads, vehicle barriers, lighting, high-tech equipment and other tools to secure the border.

Here is a partial timeline:

Speaker Previews Tomorrow's White House Signing of the 'Secure Fence Act'

Secure Fence Act of 2006 (H.R.6061)



Section 102(b) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-208; 8 U.S.C. 1103 note) is amended--

(1) in the subsection heading by striking `Near San Diego, California´; and

(2) by amending paragraph (1) to read as follows:


`(A) REINFORCED FENCING- In carrying out subsection (a), the Secretary of Homeland Security shall provide for least 2 layers of reinforced fencing, the installation of additional physical barriers, roads, lighting, cameras, and sensors--

`(i) extending from 10 miles west of the Tecate, California, port of entry to 10 miles east of the Tecate, California, port of entry;

`(ii) extending from 10 miles west of the Calexico, California, port of entry to 5 miles east of the Douglas, Arizona, port of entry;

`(iii) extending from 5 miles west of the Columbus, New Mexico, port of entry to 10 miles east of El Paso, Texas;

`(iv) extending from 5 miles northwest of the Del Rio, Texas, port of entry to 5 miles southeast of the Eagle Pass, Texas, port of entry; and

`(v) extending 15 miles northwest of the Laredo, Texas, port of entry to the Brownsville, Texas, port of entry.

`(B) PRIORITY AREAS- With respect to the border described--

`(i) in subparagraph (A)(ii), the Secretary shall ensure that an interlocking surveillance camera system is installed along such area by May 30, 2007, and that fence construction is completed by May 30, 2008; and

`(ii) in subparagraph (A)(v), the Secretary shall ensure that fence construction from 15 miles northwest of the Laredo, Texas, port of entry to 15 southeast of the Laredo, Texas, port of entry is completed by December 31, 2008.

`(C) EXCEPTION- If the topography of a specific area has an elevation grade that exceeds 10 percent, the Secretary may use other means to secure such area, including the use of surveillance and barrier tools..


5 posted on 11/02/2006 5:24:14 PM PST by DumpsterDiver
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To: claudiustg

"There is a fundamental difference between building a wall to keep people out and building a wall to keep people in. If you don’t believe me, perhaps you should canvass the inmates at Deer Lodge and the millionaires at Iron Horse..."

Great piece of writing!

6 posted on 11/02/2006 8:19:54 PM PST by concentric circles
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To: claudiustg

Build it high, and build it wide!!!

7 posted on 11/02/2006 8:23:05 PM PST by chaos_5
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