Byron York at the Washington Examiner had an eye-opening op-ed today, asking what America Micahel Gerson is living in. While I hadn’t read that particular piece on on the Washington Post, I’d read similar comments both from the chattering class as well as on various comment boards. To wit, concerning Arizona’s new immigration enforcement law: Americans just won’t put up with having the authorities ask for their ID on demand. To this, Mr. York says:
Which leads to the question: What America is Gerson living in? No, we are not confronted by actors with heavy German accents demanding our papers. We are instead confronted routinely by people of all stripes asking to see our driver’s license. When we board an airplane, we are asked to produce a government-issued photo ID, usually a driver’s license. When we make some credit- or debit-card purchases in department stores, we are asked to produce a driver’s license. When we enter many office buildings, both private and government, security guards often ask us to produce a driver’s license. When we go to doctors’ offices and hospitals, we are asked to produce a driver’s license. When we check into hotels, we are asked to produce a driver’s license. When we purchase some over-the-counter drugs, we are asked to produce a driver’s license. If we go to a bar or nightclub, anyone who looks at all young is asked to produce a driver’s license. And needless to say, if we have any encounter with police or other authorities, we are asked to produce a driver’s license.
Bingo. Read the rest for more insight and in retrospect, obvious points. While I respect — and to a certain point, agree — with the idea that people should be able to carry on their daily business without having to prove their identity on demand, this doesn’t really change things all that much. All the hyperventilating about racism or Nazism is flat out crazy or dishonest at worst, and incredibly misguided at best. Listen: if a particular law just happens to be broken by X color, enforcing that law isn’t racist, assuming that the law wasn’t created to go after X color to begin with. And these weren’t.
As I’ve said before multiple times: if you remove the hyperbole, lies, and self-interested politics from the issue, the immigration “problem” isn’t one at all. Let those that want to live and work in the United States in, as long as they’re not criminals or felons. We need to control the borders of our country, though, and know who we’re letting in. Anyone that balks at that requirement has ulterior motives.