The debate over the issuing of drivers licenses to illegals, is just one part of a larger debate over the status of those folks who have entered the country illegally and now want to be allowed to stay-in essence, squatter's rights being elevated into a new form of civil rights. What's distressing to us, and we've done more to represent the rights of immigrant businesses than any other lobbying entity in NYC, is how proponents of the illegal cohort are so quick to label as racist any one who disagrees with their point-of-view.
A great deal of this has come out in the dispute over the actions of the Minutemen. The group, whose leader was violently bum rushed from a Columbia stage last year, advocates a citizen patrol of the US' southern border in order to stem the tide of illegals into the country. As far as we know, the group has not advocated any violence and yet they're characterized as a violent and racist vigilante organization. Which is what happens to almost anyone who disagrees with the concept of open borders.
What happens here, is that the narrative of the open borders movement features the use of the term, "anti-immigrant," in all contexts where opponents are objecting to policies involving illegal immigrants-thereby tendentiously blurring the distinction between those who struggled to come here legally, and those who purposefully skirted the country's laws. In a rhetorical nano-second, many of us who have fought for immigrants for years are turned into xenophobes and racists.
In addition, it should be pointed out that the fact that a great many people here illegally are also productive, doesn't take away from the realities of: (1) homeland security in an age of terrorism, and; (2) the large numbers of illegals engaged in criminal activity. Put simply, an open border-and those who deny they are open border advocates while opposing every proactive measure to close the border are just being dishonest-is an existential threat to the safety of all Americans.
It is also at the same time, a threat to the American national identity, since without an orderly immigration and assimilation process, our national identity will erode into meaninglessness-something that many of these open border advocates would welcome since they're not big fans of the American national identity in the first place (taking exception to the idea of what they call "American exceptionalism").
Which brings us to the Spitzer-driven drivers license issue, highlighted once again today in the NY Sun, and the NY Daily News. Underneath all of the mendacious public rhetoric lie the philosophical issues that we've outlined. We're more interested in creating a safe and orderly society, and this can't be done by the cavalier and open legitimization of those who've broken the laws to come here. The rule of law is vitiated when the state's chief executive moves, without any legislative mandate, to bestow the government's aura of legitimacy on people here illegally.