Charles Krauthammer has written a piece that, to my mind, accurately encapsulates the set of conservative objections and views on the ongoing immigration debate. From
First a Wall — Then Amnesty:
Forget employer sanctions. Build a barrier. It is simply ridiculous to say it cannot be done. If one fence won’t do it, then build a second 100 yards behind it. And then build a road for patrols in between. Put cameras. Put sensors. Put out lots of patrols.
Can’t be done? Israel’s border fence has been extraordinarily successful in keeping out potential infiltrators who are far more determined than mere immigrants. Nor have very many North Koreans crossed into South Korea in the last 50 years.
Of course it will be ugly. So are the concrete barriers to keep truck bombs from driving into the White House. But sometimes necessity trumps aesthetics. And don’t tell me that this is our Berlin Wall. When you build a wall to keep people in, that’s a prison. When you build a wall to keep people out, that’s an expression of sovereignty. The fence around your house is a perfectly legitimate expression of your desire to control who comes into your house to eat, sleep and use the facilities. It imprisons no one.
Of course, no barrier will be foolproof. But it doesn’t have to be. It simply has to reduce the river of illegals to a manageable trickle. Once we can do that, everything becomes possible — most especially, humanizing the situation of our 11 million existing illegals.
This is precisely the crux of the issue as I see it. All “reforms” will be useless or worse than useless until we take measured steps to actually control our border. Once we stem the tide, we can begin to truly work on the problem of those already here.