Thoughts on Immigration
By David Henderson
I don’t have much to add to Bryan’s thoughts on conservative “overlordship” re immigration. But I do want to reply to some points that his commenters raised.
. Commenter Tom Dougherty argues that even though landlords, employers, and grocers are delighted to have immigrants as tenants, employees, and customers, respectively, competing native renters and employees are not and do see these immigrants as intruders. Tom may well be right about how they see immigrants, but that doesn’t mean that they see immigrants correctly. If I’m renting an apartment and someone else is competing for the same apartment, that person isn’t intruding. To say he is is to say that I have a right to rent that apartment. Whence comes that right? Moreover, the immigrant is no more an intruder in that situation than a native-born competitor is. Ditto with the employment relationship: no one has a right to a job.
. Tom Dougherty adds that university professors don’t have to compete with unskilled labor. True. But we do have to compete with skilled foreign academics, of whom there are many.
. ziel argues on Constitutional grounds. He writes:
In it [the Constitution] Congress is explicitly given the power to “establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization”. So it’s pretty clear that controlling who can become a citizen (and thus who is allowed to live in the country and under what conditions) is well within Congress’s powers.
He’s right that Congress has the power to set the rules for naturalization. This doesn’t mean that it has the power to set the rules for immigration. One can immigrate and not be a citizen, as was true of me for the years from 1977 to 1986. Indeed, my understanding–and I’m willing to be corrected–is that for at least the first few decades of this country, the state governments set their own rules for immigration.