You know those signs on the back of cars that say “Baby on Board”? The idea is to reinforce the idea of precious cargo, so anyone tempted to act recklessly will think twice before putting an innocent in danger.
America needs a “Baby on Board” sign at its borders to remind everyone who enters our country that we have precious cargo here, too. Not just our wonderful citizens, whose lives are too often put at risk by disrespectful newcomers, but even more importantly the U.S. Constitution which has guaranteed us our way of life for 228 years. I suppose that seems too old for it to be called a baby, but in the scope of history, it’s the blink of an eye, and without proper care and feeding, the Constitution could easily perish.
The question is how do we make sure that the baby is indeed taken care of?
Unfortunately, it is transparently obvious that millions of newcomers to our country come from traditions that have nothing in common with that Constitution. If we assume without evidence that these newcomers, legal or illegal, will value our Constitution, then we should not be surprised when a tragic collision occurs between our shared traditional values and the foreign ideas that prevail in foreign countries.
The obvious — and too often unspoken — truth is that in a democratic republic such as ours, the freedom we enjoy is transitory. It can be voted out of existence any time a majority of people decide to do so. Or as Ronald Reagan said 20 years before he became president:
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction — we didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to-do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children, what it once was like in the United States when men were free.”
Does that sound like hyperbole to you? Mere rhetoric? A cheap Republican trick? If it does, then you are part of the problem. The “baby on board” is our shared responsibility, and if you aren’t worried about preserving, protecting and defending the Constitution, then you shouldn’t be in the driver’s seat.
Nor should you have the right to turn the keys over to anyone who walks by, but isn’t that what we are doing with our open-door immigration policy? By inviting millions of people into our country who don’t share our values, we are putting the Constitution at risk, and with it all the freedoms we hold dear.
Even worse, by turning a blind eye to lawbreakers and rewarding illegal aliens who are already here, we make a mockery of the rule of law. Cities such as Chicago and states such as California that protect illegal aliens by giving them “sanctuary” are not just foolish; they are blatantly violating the Constitution. The Supremacy Clause is unambiguous.
“This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof ... shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”
When California created a law that said the state would stand opposed to U.S. immigration policy, it was not just fighting Attorney General Sessions or President Trump, but the entire U.S. government and the U.S. Constitution that stands behind it. That’s no different than what happened prior to the Civil War, when individual Southern states rejected federal supremacy, and faced the wrath of President Lincoln.
I’m not predicting a new civil war this time, but strap the baby in. It’s gonna be a bumpy ride.
Frank Miele is managing editor of the Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell, Montana. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.