As a child immigrant from South America, I can only watch with anguish as the migrant caravan from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador marches through Mexico and seeks to enter the United States.
However, my anguish is not because I believe the U.S. government is in error by strictly enforcing our nation’s laws and blocking a foreign legion from violating our sovereignty.
The Trump administration is absolutely correct that illegal entry into the United States must be stopped; if the migrants have a legitimate claim for asylum due to political or religious persecution, they must apply at a valid port of entry and be processed legally.
I should know. I came to America legally, waiting years to get a visa. If there needs to be some reform of the immigration system, it is not by erasing national borders and national sovereignty.
Every country has an inherent right to determine who it accepts into its bosom. This is fundamental to the very concept of nationhood. Most of the migrants are economic refugees and the U.S. obviously cannot absorb every person on the planet who thinks they can get a better job here.
Yet the existence of a welfare state in the United States since Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society” of the mid-1960s has done exactly what Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman once argued was impossible: “open borders with a welfare state.”
It is impossible and unsustainable because such a system will automatically attract most of the world’s population to our shores to gain access to the liberal social benefits we offer, from free education and health care to food stamps, welfare and even subsidies to attend college! Now San Francisco even maintains that the right to vote should follow.
Having come to the United States from Ecuador, I know a little about how socialist welfare states destroy societies. Look at Venezuela as a prime example. An oil-rich nation, once the pride of the continent, is now an economic basket case that can’t print additional zeros fast enough on its worthless currency. This is the result of socialism.
Socialism does not uplift individuals; it impoverishes them. It does not raise living standards; it decimates them. It does not advance human potential but, as Franklin D. Roosevelt said, it subtly destroys the human spirit.
This failed ideology — of whatever variety — has never worked successfully anywhere and never will. Neither Bernie Sanders’ $30 trillion “Medicare for all” nor the latest giveaway scheme mouthed by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez can succeed because, as Margaret Thatcher noted, “You eventually run out of other people’s money.” Or the ink on the printing presses runs dry.
Of course, socialism itself has never been a system intended to help anyone, anyone other than the elite ruling class of a nation who see it not as a way to raise up the poor and working class but as a way to keep them down and under control, stifling their ambition and upward mobility.
Socialism is slavery or serfdom, pure and simple. I’m from South America, so I know a little about tyranny. And socialism is tyranny.
Even Marx saw socialism as only the phase preceding communism. However, far from the “withering away of the state,” socialism’s final stage — communism — leads only to a totalitarian terror state that bulldozes human liberty and enslaves the human soul.
The socialism (or what is currently mislabeled “progressivism”) that the Democratic Party offers new arrivals from abroad — be they legal immigrants or illegal aliens — is not the freedom they crave, but the slave state of political and economic regimentation lorded over by a ruling elite that seeks only to expand and maintain its power.
That is exactly what Pelosi, Schumer and company seek — not to help a suffering population or rescue those escaping poverty or persecution abroad, but to use these unfortunate people in a cynical political power play to solidify their electoral position through creating a permanently dependent underclass willing to trade its votes for the promise of cradle to grave security.
It is an illusion and it is despicable. Yet it is the history of the Democratic Party in America for more than a century — from being the party of southern slaveholders to being the party of Tammany Hall, which cruelly manipulated our earlier generations of immigrants — exchanging jobs for votes.
They are still at it, now exchanging food stamps and Medicaid for votes.
The Democratic Party detests the idea of its immigrant underclass becoming self-reliant and independent, business owners and entrepreneurs. That may lead them to becoming Republicans, after all!
Far from being the party of working people, the Democratic Party today is the party of the billionaire plutocrat elites — the Steyers and Soroses and Bloombergs — which draws its greatest strength from the millionaire enclaves of Silicon Valley, Manhattan and suburban Washington. D.C.
And these are the folks whose aspirations for the migrant caravans yearning for the American Dream is to consign them to a future of despair and dependency where their hopes for the future remain buried in sub-minimum wage jobs and tending to the lawns, toilets, and estates of their present-day slavemasters.
Dr. James Veltmeyer, a former Republican candidate for Congress, is a La Jolla physician voted a “Top Doctor” in San Diego County in 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2017.