Saturday, November 14, 2009

Lawrence Auster criticizes the Pope on immigration

Same old open-borders preaching from Pope John Paul III

The post links to this article: Pope, migration is opportunity: World Congress on Migrants opens in Vatican. Zenit has some more coverage--Migrants a Resource, Nothing to Fear, Says Pope:

The Pontiff contended that "genuine development always has a solidary nature" and globalization "can be a propitious occasion to promote integral development, but only if cultural differences are accepted as occasions for meeting and dialogue, and if the unequal distribution of world resources sparks a new awareness of the necessary solidarity that must unite the human family."

Benedict XVI called for "adequate answers to the great social changes under way, taking into account that there cannot be effective development if the meeting between peoples, the dialogue between cultures and respect for legitimate differences are not fostered."

"Migrations are an invitation to perceive clearly the unity of the human family, and the values of acceptance, hospitality and love of neighbor," he added.

The Pope reminded the faithful of the Church's invitation to "open their hearts to migrants and their families, knowing that [...] they constitute a resource that must be valued at the proper time for humanity's journey and its genuine development."

In his opening address, Archbishop Antonio Vegliò, president of the pontifical council that organized the conference, explained that among its objectives is addressing the reality of departure, transit and arrival, which goes across society and Christian communities.

"The present movements of peoples make it necessary to further knowledge," he said, "on topics such as the fundamental unity of the human race, freedom of religion and worship, universal fraternity, the universal destiny of the goods of this world, the right to liberty of movement, the centrality of the human person and the protection of his fundamental rights everywhere, as well as the reunification of families, an education that respects the native culture of migrants and, finally, the responsibility of political leaders to find stable solutions, in the socioeconomic field, which do not oblige citizens to emigrate."
Do we find here an instance of liberalism, with its assumption that societies are made up of rootless individuals who have no ties to anyone else? It appears not, though one could prematurely leap to that conclusion.

Does the exercise of charity require that we extend citizenship to immigrants? And does universal fraternity override the order of charity? Would one argue that migrants are in greater need of our charity than our fellow citizens, because of their needs are greater and they have much less? As for liberty of movement -- how much land does a political community need for itself? How much can it claim for future generations and expansion? The human family may be one, but how does one reconcile this fact with the "legitimate differences" that divide peoples and cultures? Cannot a host society demand that those who wish to become parts of it assimilate and adopt the host culture as their own? To do any less would seem to invite division which could lead to actual conflict.

What is to be done if immigrants refuse to assimilate? Can they be legitimately expelled from a community? Or can the children be educated against their parents' will? (Could this be done successfully without taking the children away from their families?) If they cannot be legitimately expelled, those who do not choose assimilation can be kept under resident alien status until their death, along with their children. But what about a demographic war? What if immigrants reproduce at a greater rate than that of the natives? Would one be so glib as to say that the natives deserve this, for practicing contraception? Or that this is what happens "naturally," with one people displacing another?

Can state education replace the moral formation provided by parents? If immigrant families do not educate their children as well as natives, then what is to be done once the results become manifest with rising crime, illegitimacy rate, and so on?\

In general, when people cannot lead or control themselves, should they be placed under the rule of another? Liberals are vehemently opposed to this, but what would they do if this was the only rational solution? (How many white liberals feel free to preach multiculturalism, tolerance, and a laissez-faire attitude towards moral education because they do not have to live next to non-whites?)

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