Kendall Coffey


Stranded within the disquieting paradox of immigration, the constitutional right of an alien to seek asylum in this country remains a dilemma that strikes at our core values. As a nation descended predominantly from immigrants, much that we represent as a people and the quality of life we enjoy today is owed to ancestors who braved myriad perils to reach our shores from foreign lands. And yet, that same standard of living that each of us owes to refugees of the past is seemingly threatened by future immigrants who continue to flood across United States borders each year. Therefore, deep-rooted ambivalence reaches across public and legal policies that cannot reconcile our legacy of compassion with present apprehensions about the massive consumption of finite resources that are professedly jeopardized by future immigrant multitudes. This moral conflict is compounded by the enormous logistical challenge in restricting immigration. Even hundred-mile walls have seen little success throughout history. Certainly, our country's thousands of miles of land and sea borders, along with undefinable access through the airways, eliminate any realistic possibility of effective physical containment.

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