When it comes to freedom, vigilance is always in order. Forgive me for how I am going to apply this, for it might not fit with the way you are accustomed to thinking.
For I speak of freedom of immigration -- specifically, immigration as practiced by so-called "illegals."
Freedom of immigration has eroded over the last century and a half. If we are to be vigilant in protecting all our freedoms, this, too, is one we should be wary of losing. In fact, we should perhaps turn our vigilance more toward this than any other freedom -- at this time, anyway -- for it is a freedom that is being lost.
Has been lost.
I have studied this issue. I have learned that the loss of freedom of immigration was one of the reasons our fathers went to war in the American Revolution. At least, in the list of causes for taking up arms against England, the Declaration of Independence mentions restrictions on coming to America as one of the injuries prompting our forefathers to go to war.
I believe in freedom of immigration. If it is one of the causes for our revolution, it perhaps should be considered one of the founding freedoms of our nation.
I notice how the first laws on naturalization gave no restrictions on coming here. Rather, they specified that having been here a certain number of years was the basic threshold for being granted naturalization. In 1790, citizenship was granted when you had lived here one year.
Can you imagine what it would mean if we applied that principle today? All those "illegal" immigrants who have been here a year, instead of being deported, would be granted citizenship. I'm just saying . . . I'm just saying that if we applied the same rules as we had back then, all these "illegals" would be legal.
Freedom to immigrate is not a new thing. It is an old thing. Once was the day, maybe 150 years ago, when, by and large, you could pretty much pick what country you wanted to move to, and just pack up and move there -- no port of customs to account to and no one waiting at the border to ask you for paperwork.
It is the loss of this freedom to immigrate that is a new thing. These days, most every nation, if not every single one, has restrictions on people coming. If we believe in protecting our freedoms, this is one we should protect. If we see a picture of of someone in the past carrying a banner reading, "Vigilance Forever," we should consider that in our day, such vigilance for freedom may well be in standing up for the right to move freely from one country to another.