Magazine article First Things; A Monthly Journal of Religion and Public Life

Immigration Reform

Magazine article First Things; A Monthly Journal of Religion and Public Life

Immigration Reform

Article excerpt

It's a thorny problem. On the one hand, widespread illegal immigration flouts the law and puts a great deal of stress on the communities where illegal immigrants end up, often in large numbers. But on the other hand, illegal immigrants are real people with real needs, in many cases drawn to America by industries that depend on the cheap, underground labor markets that illegal immigration makes possible.

Our present economic woes make the problem less pressing. Fewer opportunities mean fewer illegal immigrants. But the issue won't go away. All the more reason to laud the recent "Evangelical Statement of Principles for Immigration Reform" drafted by a group of Evangelicals working under the name "Evangelical Immigration Table" and signed by a wide range of Evangelical leaders, including Timothy George, Russell Moore, Richard J. Mouw, Ronald J. Sider, and other First Things contributors.

The Statement rings the law-and-order bell a number of times, calling for reform that "respects the rule of law, guarantees secure national borders, and ensures fairness to taxpayers." It also rings the humanitarian bell, insisting that immigration policy "respect the God-given dignity of every person" and "protect the unity of the immediate family. …

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