If this president sends a message, is it necessarily wrong? If a tree falls in a forest, and nobody's around . . . .
There are many in this country who would support this president's sometimes xenophobic and always unpresidential tweets at the speed of a jerked knee. That said, there are also many people in this country who would criticize any decision Donald Trump makes. For every person wearing a MAGA cap at a Trump rally, there are four people on CNN saying the economy stinks, nobody's making money in the markets, and today's music is better. Who are you going to believe, them or your lyin' eyes?
The papers have been filled with this so-called caravan coming from Latin America, mainly Honduras. Especially because those in it like to talk to the cameras, and have made their intentions known.
The Washington Post quoted one of the caravan's organizers telling younger folks not to hitch rides on buses or trucks. It's part of the strategy: "Companeros, we can't skip ahead like this. If there are fewer of you, it's easier for the authorities to come and round you all up."
So the president tweets that he's sending the military to the border. It's not necessarily the wrong move, no matter what his critics say.
The military won't be allowed to arrest anybody. That's verboten by a little something called the Posse Comitatus Act. The military can't be involved in domestic law enforcement except in some extreme situations. Mostly these troops would be used in a support role.
But even better than that, their deployment sends a message. And one that President Trump's most impassioned critics refuse to admit: A nation needs its borders.
The harsh reality is we're a nation of laws. Just as are France, Spain, Israel, India, Hungary, Greece, etc.--all countries with real boundaries and even walls. The government of Estados Unidos must maintain order--and our border--as is our sovereign right as a free nation. When thousands of people loudly declare they will enter a country whether that country likes it or not, you can understand how some there might respond, "No, you won't."
This shining city on a hill can be humanitarian and process migrants one by one to weed out those who qualify for asylum and those who don't without opening our borders and letting the people run in, as if this was a Walmart on Black Friday.
Americans understand the desire for poor, tired, huddled masses to move to a better situation. But among thousands of Hondurans, what are the odds that there are at least a few bad apples? Shouldn't there be a better way to process them than allowing a stampede?
If the military, constrained by Posse Comitatus, is only there to ferry around real Border Patrol agents and perhaps feed and clothe folks in temporary camps, that's one job. Another job would be to reinforce the president's message. Which, it should be noted, isn't always wrong.
Editorial on 11/07/2018
Print Headline: A message, loud and clear