A Utah Reader Visits The Capitol And Thinks He's In An Armed Prison Camp
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08/19/06 - Saturday Forum: A West Virginia Reader Has Proof That Immigrants Drive Health Care Cost Crisis; etc.

From:  Craig Russell

In 1982, I visited Washington, D.C. for the first time. I traveled there again this April. The difference between my two visits is staggering.

Nearly twenty-five years ago, Washington was a beautiful, friendly city and the great Capitol our founders must have envisioned.

But earlier this year, I found an armed prison camp. Blockades, vehicle barriers, and Kevlar-covered security guards—some carrying automatic rifles—were everywhere.

Every building I entered—the Air & Space Museum, the Holocaust Museum, the House Office Building, the National Gallery of Art, the National Archives, and the Capitol—had a platoon of armed guards at the entrance. Most, if not all, had metal detectors.

Racial profiling? At the National Gallery of Art there was a guard who, for unknown reasons, followed me into five different rooms.

Midday, we decided to rest our feet by watching a movie at the National Archives.

Democracy Starts Here, which I walked out on, is a vapid multicultural lecture on the evils of racial profiling and past immigration policies. [Watch it online here.]

We converted our once beautiful nation's Capitol into a detention center. But why?

In the name of multiculturalism, that's why. In the name of being "a nation of immigrants," that's why. On behalf of greedy businessmen, that's really why.

The politically correct talk about all the sacrifice and risks immigrants take to get to America.

  • Risks? What surer bet is there than that coming to the United States will increase your wealth?

  • Risks? America is safer than any country immigrants are coming from—except for the parts of our country already dominated by immigrants.

  • Risks? Early immigrants took weeks to get here across a dangerous ocean aboard rickety sailing vessels. Half of the Mayflower's passengers didn't survive the first winter. One of my ancestors from that vessel was orphaned. Today's immigrants come here on the safest mode of transportation ever invented—airplanes. Their trip takes hours, not weeks.

  • Sacrifice? When early immigrants said "Good-bye" to their families in the Old World, it meant exactly that. There were no telegraphs, telephones, email, Internet or satellite TV. There were no $500 round-trip airplane tickets.

  • Sacrifice? When early immigrants got here they found few roads, schools, hospitals, or government welfare offices. They found no ready-made apartments or homes. Everything they needed they had to grow or build themselves.

The negative effects of immigration as reflected in economics, crime, politics and culture, are real.

Americans have the right to question those effects without being called racists, nativists, xenophobes, or bigots.

Russell's previous letter asking why lawyers make immigration policy is here.

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