- - Thursday, September 1, 2016

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

To be an immigration restrictionist today is to reside in a political Groundhog Day where sensible enforcement strategies of yesteryear have disappeared into a black hole. According to the press (and Donald Trump), there are only two choices for dealing with illegal aliens: Round them up to be deported or allow the long-termers — those with anchor babies and lengthy periods of job thievery — to stay. Really?

Instead, why not turn up the heat on existing programs, such as e-Verify, to make illegals’ lives so difficult that they are forced to leave on their own, the same way they got here?

Mitt Romney was roundly criticized for suggesting illegals “self-deport.” Apparently it was too sensible a suggestion for mainstream media to abide. But Mr. Romney was right: Deportation expenses for job thieves shouldn’t fall on American taxpayers.

Behavioral psychologist B.F. Skinner taught us that negative reinforcement reduces undesirable behaviors, but America’s current practice of rewarding illegals with jobs, food stamps and first-world healthcare trains them to sit and stay. Democrats apparently want culturally big-government foreigners to remain and vote.

After decades of permissiveness, the government must demonstrate seriousness about immigration enforcement if we are to ever again imagine ourselves as “a nation of laws.”

BRENDA WALKER

Berkeley, Calif.

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