Side Door to Disunion

By: Daniel Nardini

 Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Commentary Although a handful of states—like Alabama, Arizona, Georgia and Indiana—have passed anti-immigrant state immigration laws, most of the other states have not. States that are considering passing state immigration laws include North and South Carolina, Idaho, Maryland, Minnesota and Missouri. Such anti-immigrant immigration laws have come up and been voted down, but this does not mean that there is not strong support for such state immigration laws.

The U.S. federal government is suing Alabama on its state immigration law because immigration is in the realm of the federal government as defined in the U.S. Constitution. On this point the federal government is correct. The U.S. Constitution gives very few and very limited powers to the federal government to oversee all of the states. The states have a lot of leeway to govern themselves. This was the intent of the U.S. Constitution so that no state and the people within it would be run roughshod over their local rights by a strong central government. But what powers the federal government is invested with by the U.S. Constitution cannot be taken over by the states.
We saw what happened when some states believed that they had the right to do as they please—secession and civil war. A third of the country devastated and 500,000 Americans killed in the U.S. Civil War (1861-1865). Here is the danger. If states are allowed to make their own immigration laws, then they will be allowed to say who is a U.S. citizen and who is not. But it can go further. States can then start to make laws about what money they should mint, controlling state borders, allowing what language should be spoken and what languages cannot be official, and who is an American and who is not.

And when you come down to it, the federal government will no longer be needed, and every state will act as its own sovereign nation. This is the way it was in 1787 under the Articles of Confederation. Every state had its own coinage and currency. Every state had its own border controls. Every state decided its own foreign policy, and every state decided who was a resident and who was not. Many of those men who wrote the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation realized that this loose confederation was not working. The states were coming into conflict among themselves and could not possibly stand up against an external threat.

Hence why the U.S. Constitution was created. What I find scary is that there are those, who consciously or not, are trying to dismantle the United States for their own narrow view of what they want. This is a side door to dismembering the country as a whole. States passing their own immigration laws is a dangerous step of creating their own sovereignty. Sadly there are groups and movements like this in this country, but my fear is that a number of politicians will be party to carrying out the dismemberment of the country.

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