where religion and politics meet

Everybody has a worldview. A worldview is what you believe about life: what is true, what is false, what is right, what is wrong, what are the rules, are there any rules, what is the meaning of life, what is important, what is not.

If a worldview includes a god/God, it is called a religion. If a bunch of people have the same religion, they give it a name.

Nations have worldviews too, a prevailing way of looking at life that directs government policies and laws and that contributes significantly to the culture. Politics is the outworking of that worldview in public life.

Our country’s worldview used to be Christianity. Now we are told it is and has always been secularism, which is practical atheism. This issue divides our country, but those who disagree are divided as well on how to respond.

Our country could not have been founded as a secular nation, because a secular country could not guarantee freedom of religion. Secular values would be higher than religious ones, and they would supersede them when there was a conflict. Secularism sees religion only as your personal preferences, like your taste in food, music, or movies. It does not see religion, any religion, as being true.

But God, prayer, the Bible, and the Ten Commandments were always important parts of our public life, including our public schools, until 1963, when the court called supreme ruled them unconstitutional, almost 200 years after our nation’s founding.

Our country also did not envision a multitude of different religions co-existing in one place, because the people, and the government, would then be divided on the basic questions of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Our Constitution, which we fought a war to be able to enact, states, among other things, that our government exists for us to form a more perfect union, ensure domestic tranquility, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity. It could not do this unless it had a clear vision of what it considers to be true, a vision shared with the vast majority of the people in this country.

I want to engage the government, the culture, and the people who live here to see life again from a Christian perspective and to show how secularism is both inadequate and just plain wrong.

Because religion deals with things like God, much of its contents is not subject to the scientific method, though the reasons why one chooses to believe in God or a particular religion certainly demand serious investigation, critical thinking, and a hunger for what is true.

Science and education used to be valuable tools in the search for truth, but science has chosen to answer the foundational questions of life without accepting the possibility of any supernatural causes, and education no longer considers the search to be necessary, possible, or worthwhile.

poligion: 1) the proper synthesis of religion and politics 2) the realization, belief, or position that politics and religion cannot be separated or compartmentalized, that a person’s religion invariably affects one’s political decisions and that political decisions invariably stem from one’s worldview, which is what a religion is.

If you are new to this site, I would encourage you to browse through the older articles. They deal with a lot of the more basic issues. Many of the newer articles are shorter responses to partiular problems.

Visit my other websites theimportanceofhealing blogspot.com where I talk about healing and my book of the same name and LarrysBibleStudies.blogspot.com where I am posting all my other Bible studies. Follow this link to my videos on youtube:


If you want to contact me, email is best: lacraig1@sbcglobal.net

Thank you.

Larry Craig

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Immigration Part 1

Immigration: So what exactly is it again that we are trying to fix?  (Part 1)

If you want to fix something, you first have to know what it is supposed to look like when it’s not broken.  That goes for immigration as well. 

But I wouldn’t call what is going on now fixing anything.  They are trying to clean up a mess years in the making through neglect, political expediency, and willful disregard for the laws of the land.  That same moral rebellion that was energized when the courts found religious and moral instruction and prayer and talk about God not proper in public schools and then later in public life at all found it hard to keep a lot of laws.  It turned a blind eye to illegal immigration, probably because it was easy to exploit people with secrets to hide; and besides, if we threw off all those restraining personal rules, why should we strictly enforce rules on others, especially if no one is being hurt?

The real problem with immigration is that a rule (the 14th Amendment) made after the Civil War to give freed black slaves citizenship was transformed into free citizenship for anyone who could get born within our borders by any means.  Now our politicians know, or should know, that this isn’t really the case, because the children born here of foreign diplomats aren’t given citizenship.  And even the Native Americans didn’t receive citizenship until the next century with an act of Congress.

So to say that children born here to illegal immigrants automatically become citizens is an abuse of our Constitution, wishful thinking, and a pandering to Hispanic voters.  This is like telling people it is wrong to rob banks, but if you do, you can keep the money.  Just pay taxes on it, of course.

We are providing a strong incentive for people to come here by whatever means, because it is worth the risks they take to give their children the privileges of citizenship.  That’s why people rob banks.  They weigh the risks against the potential benefits and find it worth it.

And why do I get the impression that the major impetus behind immigration ‘reform’ today is that the Democrats feel they will have a lock on the votes from all these new voters?  And why would that be?  I would venture to say that the mere matter of not being citizens is not a stumblingblock to Democrats for getting immigrants to vote.  This is certainly the main reason they oppose voter ID laws.

What is being touted as immigration reform is really nothing of the sort.  The children of illegals, brought here through no fault of their own, are given legal status.  But then who will have the heart, or the gall, to send their parents back to their country of origin?  So the parents get a pass as well. 

This ‘reform’ will only try to clean up the mess of years of intentional indifference only to let the problem reoccur down the road.  I don’t believe them if or when they say this will be different.  We’ll be back here again in another generation.  If any legalization occurs before the borders are secure, the borders will never become secure.

And as long as we provide the incentive of free citizenship, we will always an abundance of illegal immigrants.

Those who turn a blind eye to illegal immigration are strong on pointing out all the benefits of immigration, even illegal immigration.  Indeed, there are benefits, but we need to look a little more closely as what is going on here.

The primary reason we need large numbers of immigrants today is that the people already living here are not reproducing in sufficient numbers to replace the population.  So our populace would be gradually aging with fewer younger people to support the elderly.  In the past, families supported their aged, but now we need more taxpaying workers to pay for our ever expanding government.  So we should not be surprised that our government is in no hurry to slow down any form of immigration.

We’ve have been teaching our daughters to pursue careers more than families, so we should not be surprised that families are shrinking. 

However, since 1965, our government’s priority in immigration has been to reunite families.  Noble, compassionate intent, but it defeats the whole purpose of immigration.  This means that we are not only getting the taxpayers but all his family which essentially resembles the demographics we already have.

I have two siblings who are not working, one due to age and another due to health.  If I were the immigrant and my entire extended family were to come here, all the supposed advantages of immigration would be nullified, taxpayers offset by non-taxpayers.

We are told of the need for immigrants because of their entrepreneurial spirit.  But I see no reason to see the current crop of immigrants as more entrepreneurial than the rest of us.  With promises of free medical care and citizenship for new born children, it is not just the entrepreneurs that we are attracting. 

We used to favor immigrants who had qualities we were looking for.  Now we seem to have little say in who comes in, though I have read that white Europeans are having a real hard time.

Some say that diversity is our strength.  Well, yes and no.  Diverse minds can bring new perspectives on solving common problems.  But diverse minds can also have different goals, different values, and different ways of approaching life. 

In the first case, they are united around a common goal.  In the second, they are irremediably divided.  Look at Washington D.C. today. 

Our government is divided over two diametrically opposed views of how to run our country.  There is no way to compromise on most issues.  If one side says that we are taxed too high and spend too much, any compromise will have higher taxes and more spending.  Just less of an increase.

We used to have more of a consensus on what America stands for, what it means to be an American.  Our nation has lost its sense of what it is we actually stand for.  The more diversity we have sought, the more we have cast aside our values to find the lowest common denominator.  And that seems to be merely the fact that we all live in the same country.  And that’s about it.  So the more diverse our immigration base, the less we share of common values, common interests, common identity.

Immigration: So what exactly is it again that we are trying to fix?  (Part 2)

One of our founding principles is e pluribus unum, out of many one.  I read that this originally applied to the uniting of 12 colonies into one nation, but it soon defined our vision of what immigration was all about.  There was an American identity that was sought, the proverbial melting pot.  Now they talk of the salad bowl.  All different elements tossed together but each retaining its original identity. 

If the United States is so great that everyone wants to come here, but then when they are here, they bring all the elements of their former homelands that we then incorporate into our being, then we slowly lose what it was that made us what we were.

Sure Italians gave us pizza and the Chinese gave us chop suey, but what made us great was more than our international cuisine.  We certainly don’t teach our children this in our public schools anymore.  Instead of the classics of Western civilization, we get minority studies.  We are more concerned with empathy than excellence.  No slight to minorities, but if we don’t teach our country’s values in school, we will soon no longer be the country that the immigrants so badly wanted to come to.

We are rejecting our past.  And in doing so, we have no idea where we are going, or what it was that made us great.  Those of us who are older are seeing many ways in which we are declining as a nation.  And immigration now unfortunately is a big part of that problem.  Instead of enlarging the American vision, they are often fragmenting it.  Instead of our nation uniting, it is slowly fracturing into myriads of particular, separate interests identified with an ever increasing number of demographic groups, every group requiring the attention and action and money of the Federal Government to address.

So now what would true immigration reform look like?

1)  We must stop rewarding unlawful behavior by giving instant citizenship to the children of those who are in this country illegally.  What do people risk by entering our country illegally?  A return trip home?  And what are the rewards?  For many, it is the citizenship of their children.  Yes, of course, there is also the free medical care (if you go to the county hospitals) and a better life in so many other ways.
2)  We must secure our borders and fix our visa system, so that visitors who extend their stays cannot disappear off the radar.
3)  We need to implement the E-Verify system immediately.  This is the best way we have now to ensure that companies do not hire people who are not here legally. 

If we don’t do these first three things, we will have this same problem again and again and again.
If we are not serious about enforcing the laws we already have, any new laws would simply be a joke.  We have three states now that offer driver’s licenses to illegals.  And these are the people who make our laws?  If they have no respect for the laws we already have, why are they in office?

4)  After we deal with essentially ending the flow and incentives for illegal immigration, those who were brought here as children could be given legal status with a path to citizenship.  No need for penalties for people who did nothing wrong.  However, those who are still children living with their parents, if the parents are no longer able to find employment, they may find themselves returning with their parents to their country of origin.  Those who were already deemed US citizens can come back when they are able to live on their own.
5)  We have far more people wanting to come here than we can assimilate.  So we can and should show preference to those who can be of most benefit to us and who are most common to our culture.

Does this sound cruel and heartless?  The fact is we cannot accommodate everyone.  Our system now is first come, first served.    This is why our country is in such unsustainable debt: we feel we have to take care of everybody through government largess, and we are broke.  And immigration no longer offers us a way out.

Another reason I question the wisdom in that change in immigration policy is that prior to 1965, our country favored northern Europeans in our immigration policy.   They were the closest of any peoples to common values, a common worldview, religion, and culture.  They were more willing and able to ‘melt’ into the pot. 

Europe, which has been slightly ahead of us, in embracing this multiculturalism is regretting much of the movement.  They have found that the immigrants are not readily assimilating. 

Our President says we are no longer a Christian nation.  We have a large and growing Muslim population.  Is there any Muslim nation that attracts immigrants, that we would want to emulate?  Many countries in Europe can become Muslim nations in our lifetime due to immigration.  Is this what we want in our future?

If you want to ‘reform’ immigration, reform it.  Change the policies that are contributing to the problems and not just patch up the mistakes of the past.  If we don’t believe in who we are, who we have been, we will change in ways we never would have imagined.