I’ve resolved to vote based off of one issue during this year’s presidential election. I don’t think that anyone will ever answer my one question honestly, so I’ve decided to test them against one hot issue.
My qualification is compassion.
There are a couple of ways you can react to someone in distress. You can have sympathy. Which is useless. Pity, alongside of wishing that the Raiders would win a superbowl, is the most useless human emotion that can be experienced. It does nothing. It’s totally self serving. It treats human misery as an observable scientific phenomenon completely removed from the observer.
Then there’s empathy. Empathy is good because it puts us in the situation with the person. Even though I have never given birth, I can empathize with a woman who is going to work hard and hurt much, with a prize of life at the end.
Empathy is good. Like cheese. But there’s something magical that happens when cheese meets dough, tomato paste with italian seasoning, italian sausage and pepperoni. It becomes more. It becomes perfect.
Empathy, when it grows within a heart of courage, conviction, and action becomes compassion. It is the heart that feels the situation of another human being and is moved into their gravitational field, to love them with action.
Ask any presidential candidate and they will tell you that they are compassionate. You might have to wake a couple of them up to ask them, but they will assure you based either on record or conviction that they’re your guy.
So here’s my litmus test.
I want my candidate to show me that they understand the whole issue and not just news sound bites. I want my candidate to understand that there are people dying, quite literally, to get into this country and that all of the tough talk about criminals, gangs, and walls does nothing to help. I want to hear the following.
-The immigration system is messed up. Seriously, it makes the IRS, VA, and Social Security Administration all look like well tuned models of efficiency. Why don’t we fix it? Because it’s just foreigners who suffer at the hands of our broken system. Yeah. We’re that guy.
When the department of Homeland Security was denied extra funding by congress back in 2007, they decided to pass the extra cost of their operations on to the people applying for visas, permanent residency status, and citizenship. The paperwork is monstrous. It is confusing. It is muli-faceted. It requires an exemplary understanding of the english language. Or a lawyer.
-Sanctuary cities defunded until they obey the flipping law.
-Border secured. And this is actually the first step. Despite Donald Trump’s tough talk, the softer human side of securing the border is that we have to stop enabling people to break the law. If they can get across the border to provide a better life to their family or become super rich murderous rapists and gangsters, they will. It is not the fault of the government that we are separating family after they have been caught violating the sovereignty of our country and shipped home. It’s their fault. They chose to break the law. You might as well cry a river for every person who is locked up away from their family because they tried to knock over a liquor store to provide food for the table.
It is compassion to provide the security that points to only the legal option. It is compassion to prove that we enforce our laws. Right now there are millions of illegal immigrants in our country who live in the shadows and cannot exist in the legitimate limelight of this nation. They are criminals and therefore have existences that are contrary to the light. We have to stop letting people be abused by our need to feel like we’re being kind.
That isn’t compassion. It’s pity. It’s raider nation dumbheadedness.
-Start preaching at the other countries. My president has spent the last seven years apologizing to a country who jails illegal immigrants, beats them, sells them if they’re pretty enough, and then sends them north to our borders. He has apologized when one of our states actually passed a law saying that they will enforce federal law. Do I think Trump can make Mexico pay for a wall? Well, considering the billions of dollars we give them in foreign aid, considering the free trade we have allowed to flow across the border, and considering that it costs nothing to cross the border currently, yeah I think that’s actually doable. Is it right? I dunno. But I’m ready for them to accept responsibility.
More than anything, I’m ready for a president to talk definitively about what is right and wrong about immigration. I’m ready for a president to work with congress to make our immigration system make sense. I’m ready for a president to act like a father who instills in his children the idea that we have rules to make our lives happy and orderly and to prevent chaos and misery.
I’m ready. And so is my vote.
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