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Do American Lives Count? A Short Essay

How valuable is a human life? Is an individual who murders six people eviler than an individual who murders one person? Is the life of someone killed by a white man worth more than the life of someone killed by a black man, or a Hispanic man? Do black lives really matter more than white lives?

Those who identify themselves as liberal or progressive seem to have a sliding scale of which lives – or, more accurately, which deaths – are more valuable. The grading for this scale is mostly based on how much the death of an American can be used for political gain: A black man shot dead by a white police officer – regardless of cause – tops the scale; anyone shot dead by a white civilian scores high, since it justifies a call for tighter gun controls; anyone murdered by an illegal immigrant, however, has no worth since their death risks making illegal immigrants look bad.

In almost every aspect of socio-economic activity, progressives portray their demands as being in the interests of a healthier and physically safer society. Obesity epidemic? Change the laws to ban sugar and salt. Gun violence (except inner-city black-on-black gun violence)? Change the laws to restrict gun ownership or prevent people carrying firearms. Too many Americans without health insurance? Change the law to force people to purchase insurance. Any other health-related problems? Change the laws to fight ‘global warming’.

Homicides or other violent crimes committed by illegal aliens? Fight tooth and nail to prevent the enforcement of immigration laws.

How valuable is a human life? Barack Obama believed that introducing new laws, or tightening existing laws, was justified if doing so would save even one life. Certainly, none of his supporters objected to this idea. Shortly after the December 2012 mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, Obama voiced this sentiment during a speech at an interfaith service in Newtown. During the speech, which was published in The Atlantic, he said: “If there’s even one step we can take to save another child or another parent or another town….then surely we have an obligation to try.”

Obama repeated this sentiment in a February 2013 tweet: “If we save even one life from gun violence, it’s worth it. Tell Congress #WeDemandAVote.”

Today, in this country, we are constantly witnessing the murders of innocent Americans by illegal aliens. In many cases, these illegals had previous criminal records and, often, had been deported one or more times. In June 2015, the Senate Judiciary Committee sent a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Secretary of State John Kerry and Department of Homeland Security chief Jeh Johnson. The letter, published in the Miami Herald, presented statistics on crimes committed by illegal aliens. Among other numbers, the letter “revealed that 121 immigrant convicts were charged with homicide following their release from ICE custody between 2010 and 2014.” The word “illegal” does not appear, but the fact that these individuals were, at one point, in the custody Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) clearly demonstrates that their presence in the U.S. was illegal.

The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) documents numerous murders of Americans by illegal immigrants on its website. In many cases, the perpetrators had previous convictions and some had previously been deported.

On December 21, 2016, 31-year-old Jill Sundberg was forcibly abducted from an RV park in Washington state, driven to a remote area and then shot 13 times. According to a report by local NBC affiliate, KNDO, the killer and four other men arrested in connection with the murder, were all illegal immigrants.

On July 1, 2015, Kate Steinle was shot and killed by a Mexican national whilst walking with her father on San Francisco’s waterfront. The killer, Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, was a seven-time convicted felon who had previously been deported five times, according to a Fox News report. The city of San Francisco protected this man, shielded him from federal immigration laws and allowed him to go free from police custody even after ICE had requested he be further detained.

San Francisco, of course, is known as a sanctuary city.

There is a stark disconnect, here; on the one hand, the left argues that gun control laws be tightened because, even if it saves one life, it is worth doing. On the other, it is quite clear that tightening the nation’s immigration laws, deporting illegal alien criminals and ensuring they do not return would save many lives, yet the left resists all such actions.

Legal gun owners are protected by the Constitution; illegal aliens – by virtue of having no legal status in this country – are not. No-one’s constitutional rights are being violated by enforcing immigration laws and it cannot be denied that the lives of many Americans would not have been violently ended, had these killers not been allowed to enter the U.S. or remain here even after they committed crimes.

Kate Steinle would be alive today if the politicians and senior police officers in San Francisco had not decided that her life was less worth protecting than the life of Lopez-Sanchez.  If the left truly believes that more strict enforcement of laws – or the addition of new laws – is justified in the name of saving “even one life”, then why oppose stricter immigration enforcement?

Could it be that the lives of Americans – according to the left’s value of life sliding scale – are simply less valuable than the lives of illegal alien criminals?



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