By Frank Miele for RealClearPolitics
Epiphanies happen in the strangest places. I had one the other day while watching MSNBC. Go figure!
Now, before you jump to conclusions and suppose that I was enlightened about how white people like me are all racists or that parents like me are all dangerous terrorists, sorry to disappoint.
It wasn’t even that Donald Trump is trying to “overthrow democracy” by working to make sure that only legal votes are counted. It’s not even that some people entered the Capitol illegally on Jan. 6, 2021, because they were convinced that Democrats were trying to overthrow democracy. Of course, we all know that Democrats would never try to overthrow democracy. They are too busy trying to overthrow Republicans.
But none of those things would count as an epiphany at this point anyway, because they are drilled into our heads almost every moment we are tuned in to CNN or MSNBC. An epiphany, in case you’ve forgotten your Sunday school lessons or high school literature class, is a sudden revelation or, as Merriam-Webster defines it, “an intuitive grasp of reality through something (such as an event) is usually simple and striking.”
This moment on MSNBC was indeed simple, a mundane conversation between host Hallie Jackson and reporter Julia Ainsley about the Biden administration’s plan to lift Title 42 restrictions on immigration at the end of May, and which gave me a bracing insight into just what’s wrong with our country today.
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Title 42 is the public rule invoked by the Trump administration that allowed US border health officials to deport illegal immigrants as a means of controlling the spread of COVID-19. The Biden administration has allowed Title 42 to remain in place, and more than 1.7 million border crossers have been sent back during the two administrations.
It does seem odd that Biden has continued the use of Title 42, and we should be grateful, because nearly all of his border policies up till now have been geared toward encouraging illegal immigration. Indeed, the giant sucking sound on the southern border is no longer the sound of jobs going to Mexico, as Ross Perot imagined 30 years ago, but rather the whoosh of hundreds of thousands of foreign citizens being swept into our country by Biden’s hands.
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That’s not hyperbole. A conservative estimate by the Center for Immigration Studies found that “in January of 2022 the illegal immigrant population stood at 11.35 million — a 1.13 million increase over January 2021 when President Biden took office.”
So what happens if Title 42 goes away, and no one is turned away at the border?
As Ainsley explained to Jackson in her March 31 report, “That means families coming across the border with young children, that means even single adults, can cross the southern border and asylum. It means a return to the status quo of our asylum system that existed pre-Covid.”
She means our broken asylum system, one which has allowed people coming here for purely economic reasons to claim asylum, despite the fact that most of them are not fleeing persecution or abuse as required for an asylum claim. That has resulted in a huge backlog of cases – and the necessity of allowing hundreds of thousands of undocumented aliens to be freed into the heartland of the country with simply a promise that they will contact immigration authorities later.
Moreover, according to international law, asylum seekers are required to seek refuge in the first safe country they enter after fleeing their dangerous environment. Yet fully two-thirds of the people crossing illegally from Mexico are not Mexicans. That means they should be seeking asylum in Mexico (or another country they reach first), not simply transiting the country to reach the United States.
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Nonetheless, asylum claims have proven an effective means of gaining access to American courts, American welfare services, American schools and American jobs. Given the fact that our national debt is now in excess of $30 trillion, there seems to be little reason to encourage border crossers, yet that is just what the announced plan to end Title 42 would do.
“I’ve … had some sources say that maybe this is giving people too much lead time,” Ainsley continued in her MSNBC report. “It might encourage them to leave their homes in Central and South America to see if they can now come by May 23rd. But of course the advocacy community says this is long overdue, May 23rd is still too late, and that they want to see a real commitment to see that all these people get their day in court to have their cases heard.”
And there, ladies and gentlemen, is my epiphany. Did you catch it? If not, then Hallie Jackson’s response might trigger it:
“It’s I think hard to overstate how much interest there was in this among advocacy groups and among people who follow this issue. This is … I think it’s fair to say a highly anticipated announcement.”
Ironically, the discovery I made with the help of MSNBC was that the real danger to our country isn’t people trying to overthrow democracy, but rather people trying to take advantage of it. It is well known that the founders had a fear that pure democracy would quickly turn into tyranny of the majority. By instituting a republic with checks and balances, they were hoping to ensure long-lasting protections for the minority.
It worked, too – at least until a small faction of powerful men and women realized that they could overcome the founders’ political checks and balances with their own nearly unlimited resources. Protections for the minority could be used, jiu-jitsu-like, to throw the majority to the ground and institute policies that would never be approved if consent of the governed were required.
Suddenly, we had replaced protection of the minority with government by the few. The overwhelmingly be damned!
And how did it happen? Thanks to the “advocacy community.” It is the hidden-in-plain-sight answer to the question, “What ever happened to my country?”
Instead of working for the general welfare, as set out in the preamble of the Constitution, the advocacy community works for the benefit of narrow ideological causes and imposes them onto the nation as a whole.
The crusade to open our borders is one very obvious example of this. In a recent Morning Consult poll, Biden’s immigration policies had a 56% disapproval rating compared to only 35% who approved.
A very similar percentage of voters (55-34) opposed the plan to lift Title 42. That’s because voters aren’t stupid. They know that open borders would mean the end of American society as we know it.
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Yet here we are with an immigration disaster – because the advocacy community is punching above its weight. Of course, you won’t find the advocacy community defined anywhere – it is an amorphous collection of left-wing lawyers, powerful NGOs and global corporations who have learned to exploit the generosity and naivete of Americans to accomplish goals that are counter to our fundamental contracts.
And it’s not just immigration where the advocacy community tries to dictate to the majority of Americans that their beliefs, values, and principles are un-American – or to simply run over those beliefs with the best legal strategy that rough money can buy.
Case in point was the successful purchase of a presidential election by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan.
There has never been any doubt that the Zuckerberg millions donated to state and county election departments prior to the November 2020 election were all intended to increase the Democratic vote as a means to unseat President Trump.
That money, along with the news manipulation by Facebook and other social media, was intended to thwart the possibility of Trump putting together an electoral majority and remaining in power – something that would have been a huge threat to the advocacy community.
Molly Ball documented the “well-funded cabal of powerful people, ranging across industries and ideologies, working together behind the scenes to influence perceptions, change rules and laws, steer media coverage and control the flow of information” in a February 2021 article in Time magazine. She called it “saving” the 2020 election. The rest of us might call it a coup.
It seems that ever since that election was declared in favor of Joe Biden, the advocacy community has been working overtime to build beachheads for unpopular causes in American society. Just how did transgenderism become a cause célèbre for companies like Disney that are supposed to be promoting family-friendly values?
How did the police become the enemy of the people? How did a common-sense policy like voter ID become a hot-button issue of racism when it has nothing to do with race? How did America get fooled into trading cheap energy and high-performing cars for a windmill and a power charge every couple hundred miles? And just how did we elect so many prosecutors who don’t think they should put criminals behind bars?
The answer is the same in every case – the advocacy community. Whether it is the ACLU, Black Lives Matter, Justice Democrats, Demand Justice, the Brennan Center for Justice, the Center for American Progress, the Tides Foundation, Emily’s List, the Open Society Foundations, or any of the hundreds of other progressive organizations, these groups wield enormous power and use it to fracture the body politic into myriad special interests.
Instead of working for the common good, the advocacy community toils tirelessly to promote the rights of the few. This seems like a noble goal – until you ask who will advocate for the rest of us. Who will speak for society as a whole when we are torn into a thousand minorities?
Unlike our constitutional government, these advocacy groups have no interest in the general welfare. Instead, if left unchecked they promise to destroy the very “Blessings of Liberty” which our Constitution is meant to secure.
Syndicated with permission from Real Clear Wire.
Frank Miele, the retired editor of the Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell Mont., is a columnist for RealClearPolitics. His new book, “What Matters Most: God, Country, Family and Friends,” and his earlier books are available from his Amazon author page. Visit him at HeartlandDiaryUSA.com to read his daily commentary or follow him on Facebook @HeartlandDiaryUSA or on Twitter or Gettr @HeartlandDiary.
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