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Angelo Paparelli on Dysfunctional Government

Immigration Innocents and the Dream Act: An Open Letter to Glenn Beck

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Dear Glenn:


I've never communicated with you before, but something you said recently prompts me to write. 


I saw you on C-SPAN during your August 28 Restoring Honor event at the National Mall in Washington. Like many others, I was pleasantly surprised that you turned away from politics and focused instead on time-honored moral and religious values. 


You spoke about reading the biblical story of David and Goliath with your five-year-old son and exclaiming, "Wow, what a hero he is!"  To your son, however, David was not a hero because he "can't fly" and doesn't "wear a cape."  You then "realized" that "we've lost too many heroes in this nation" and that "heroes are just people who  . . .  at their own peril . . . stand and do the right thing." 


You also spoke admiringly of the military, America's fighting men and women, your heroes, who are at the top of the list of those whom America trusts, "15 points higher" than the next most trusted group. You asked people on the Mall and across the land to contribute money to the Special Operations Foundation -- an organization that, according to the SOF website, "provides full scholarship grants and educational and family counseling to the surviving children of special operations personnel who die in operational or training missions"


You may not know, but there is another group of unsung heroes, the Immigration Innocents, young persons (brought here illegally by their parents or made to remain longer than the law allowed) who would immensely benefit the nation by participating in military service or pursuing higher education.  Indeed, the Immigration Innocents wish to enlist, and the the armed forces welcome them in furtherance of America's strategic goal of maintaining "a mission-ready All Volunteer Force." Yet they are barred by law from joining our valiant service men and women whom you (and I) so sincerely acclaim as heroes. 


Congress will vote soon on an amendment to the Department of Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 that would solve the problem.  Known as the Dream Act, the measure is the same proposal you railed against in 2007 when you were still at CNN.  You said then that, while you "love immigrants," you have problems with those who sneak in and with legislators who pass bills "when nobody's looking."  You added: "Me personally, I care about security first. Why don't we patch the holes and put fences on our borders?  Milk before meat, Washington." 


Perhaps it's time for you to reconsider.  The non-partisan Pew Hispanic Center has reported that illegal entries at the border are sharply down since the middle of the decade.  Better yet, the Homeland Security Department has already deployed aerial drones, marshaled troops and taken many other steps to improve border security.  Congress has also strongly reinforced the integrity of our borders with a $600 million supplemental appropriation.


Well, having drunk some milk, maybe it's time for meat.  You've spoken reverently about your devotion to the Bible, your affirmation that Jesus is your lord and savior, and the wisdom of the Founding Fathers. 


I suspect you know what the Bible says in the Book of Lamentations 5:7: "Our fathers sinned . . . It is we who have borne their iniquities."  As I'm sure you're also aware, the Bible describes the Massacre of the Innocents in the Gospel of Matthew 2:16-18, and tells how Herod ordered far-reaching male infanticide in Bethlehem after hearing the Magi report that a newborn King of the Jews hailed from that village.  Even Euripides, the polytheist and Greek playwright, regrettably recognized: "The gods visit the sins of the fathers upon the children."   


Yet the signers of the U.S. Constitution, in Art.3, s.3, n.2, wisely took steps to put a halt to the practice of unjustly hurting innocent offspring.  They prohibited any bill of attainder that would "work the corruption of blood," the imposition of penalties on the innocent children of treasonous parents.


So, Glenn, maybe it's time for you to reconsider your opposition to the Dream Act, just like you recently regretted your criticism of the President as a racist who harbors a deep seated hatred of white people ("I have a big fat mouth sometimes and I say things. . . . [that's] just not the way people should behave"). Perhaps, you can look and listen here to the brave heroes who risk deportation for the fundamental right to live and thrive, pursuing the American Dream, in the country of their youth. Maybe you'll join with General Colin Powell, no less a patriot and supporter of the military, when he says:


Immigration is what's keeping this country's lifeblood moving forward . . . America is going to be a minority nation in one more generation. Our minorities are not getting educated well enough now. Fifty percent of our minority kids are not finishing high school. We've got to invest in education. We should use the DREAM Act as one way to do it.


Glenn, this time everyone's looking.  Many people listen to you.  You have the power to persuade the naysayers to reverse course.  Help save the Immigration Innocents by supporting the Dream Act


As a Christian, I ask you:  What would Jesus do?




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