|I wrote, "A person is presumed innocent until proven guilty." Brad replied, |
You are switching contexts, William. Denying entry to the 9/11 hijackers because they fit into a risk profile isn't the same as pronouncing them guilty...or incarcerating them. All right. Let's back up here. To the extent that any of the 9/11 hijackers were recognized as potential terrorists -- insofar as there was preliminary evidence to support this -- they could properly be denied entry. But you can't claim that they should have been denied entry simply because they were subsequently discovered to have been terrorists. Of course, denying someone entry isn't the same as incarcerating them. The point I was making is that you have to have at least some evidence that the prospective immigrant is not a peaceful individual before you can deny him entry, because denying a foreigner entry into the United States is an interference with his liberty, which in the absence of any evidence that he is physical threat, violates his rights.
I wrote, "Is it in Americans' rational self-interest to respect individual rights, including those of foreigners? Yes, because it's in our interest to be consistent practitioners of our moral and political principles."
You're making reference to rational self-interest while stripping it of any substantive meaning. You're attempting to deduce it from moral proclamations that you've already presupposed we are duty-bound to follow. It's a circular, dogmatic, rationalistic conception of self-interest. So what then is your concept of individual rights, since you apparently don't believe that they apply equally to each and every individual? As I understand the concept, individual rights serve to protect everyone's freedom to pursue his or her self-interest free from interference by others. They allow people to interact freely with each other and trade value for value, across states, across countries and across continents.
In practice, what you are prescribing is altruism and globalism. You are saying all nations must welcome all comers, regardless of whether the citizens of those nations value all comers. I'm saying that if a U.S. employer wants to hire a teacher from Uganda, he doesn't need the approval of everyone else in the country to do so. The Ugandan has the right, as an individual, to travel to the U.S. and accept the job offer.
What is the point of having sovereign nations at all? The logic of your universal human rights argument suggests the need for a single global government to make sure no nation puts up any immigration restrictions. No, it doesn't, and I wouldn't want a single global government; the ones we have are bad enough. What is the point of having a sovereign nation? Quoting Jefferson in The Declaration of Independence, "To secure these rights, governments are instituted among men." "To secure these rights" does not mean to violate them. It does not mean that the government can do whatever it chooses to its own citizens or the citizens of other countries -- that it can prevent people from entering or leaving the country at its arbitrary discretion. Sovereignty does not give the government carte blanche when its raison d'etre is simply to protect the individual sovereignty of the citizens under its jurisdiction.
Islamists are intent on invading Western Europe in a demographic conquest with the objective of destroying Western values. Brussels is already nearly 50% Muslim, and the whole country of France is heading that way fast. Your concern is not with securing Western values, but in making sure Islamic migration is fully accomodated by every last country in Europe. It is what the jihadists, the anarchists, the radical left, and every other member of the anti-West, anti-reason coalition desire. It is not what self-respecting people who value their own freedom and culture desire. Failing to put up defenses against a slow-motion invasion from hostile populations of Muslims is tantamount to being a pacifist in the face of an enemy who is killing you. It is suicidal. The problem here is unlimited democracy, not freedom of immigration. Muslims don't have a right to vote in Sharia law. The solution to that is a limited constitutional republic that would prevent such laws from being voted on and passed. In the absence of a constitutional republic, the solution may be to disallow this kind of immigration. I'm not sure, but it's not the ideal solution, which is to change the form of government to a limited democracy, one which is prohibited from passing laws that violate people's rights.
(Edited by William Dwyer on 8/30, 10:44pm)