Donald Sterling learned very quickly that having racist views go public and gaining the label of being a “bigot” can cost a great deal. It’s the type of label that can destroy people and nobody in the public eye in America wants that hung around their neck.
This fear is one of the driving forces preventing people in power from speaking out against certain practices. Whether in Washington DC, Hollywood, or even from pulpits across the country, there is a mixed message being spread by conservatives and liberals alike who do not want to risk acquiring the “bigot” label. This problem is oddly being propelled by two opposing forces, much like two fingers squeezing a mustard package to push the condiment out of one end. Unfortunately, this isn’t the kind of stuff that you would want to put on your hotdog. It’s much more destructive and could end up being the downfall of the country if it isn’t fixed soon.
It’s a problem that’s getting in the way of accomplishing the goals of securing our borders, protecting our interests abroad, and working with our allies in Israel. It affects how we deal with North Korea, how we prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapon capabilities, and how we manage the flow of immigrants from Latin America.
We’ll discuss solutions a little later, but first we must gain an understanding of the two opposing forces.
The Bad Left and the Bad Right
The liberal movement has it easy. Having an all-inclusive ideology means having the power to control the vote and paint conservatives as bad guys. This is the easy opposing force to comprehend because it’s the one that has been around for decades. Since the glory of the civil rights movement made it possible for American’s to truly be equal, the left has systematically pushed the boundaries to take advantage of this righteous cause and turn it into something that it was never intended to be.
Even Martin Luther King Jr. would not have advocated the right for illegal immigrants to vote. He wanted equal rights for US citizens regardless of race. What he helped to achieve has been perverted to the point that today, one can be considered to be a bigot if they believe in protecting the rights of citizens by eliminating the rights of illegals.
The conservatives are not all in the right, either. Many have hidden their true nature of isolationism behind the facade of border security and stopping the release of people who have no right to be here. The cause is righteous. The motives are not. It is clear when you see the anger towards individuals rather than the practice itself. This is not an attack on any group in particular. There are mainstream Republicans, Tea Party members, and Libertarians that fall into this category. They use vitriol and hate to promote their agenda rather than clear and practical solutions based upon sound thinking based upon the desire to keep American citizens secure.
It’s difficult to separate out the conservatives who have the right motivations from the conservatives who have inappropriate agendas because they are often intermingled behind the same causes. It’s in how they identify the problems and propose the solutions that discernment between the two can be achieved.
It’s easy to see why the left poses a challenge to America and its citizens, but some might wonder why it’s important to understand the distinctions between the two types of conservatives. If they’re fighting for the same cause, what difference does it make if their motivations are different, right?
The truth is this: a proper conservative movement based upon the sound concepts of securing the border, securing our interests abroad, assisting our allies, and protecting against future threats from countries like North Korea and Iran cannot succeed when the motivations are not in lock step. Whether in words, actions, or even subtle nuances perceived on an unconscious level, those who promote secure borders and a secure world for the wrong reasons will derail the efforts unwittingly.
Unifying Under a True Conservative Movement
Rather than let this individual post become a book, I’ll focus only on the example of our insecure borders rather than discuss other pertinent areas of foreign policy and security. We’ll continue to tackle those issues later.
Changing the hearts and minds of people is nearly impossible. The concept has been overused to the point of being a cliche in modern politics and foreign relations. It’s handed out as a solution like candy on Halloween, but it’s not a valid strategy to achieve any goal. People believe what they believe.
With that understanding, how could it be possible to unify conservatives when so many of them have the wrong mindset or bigotry in their heart? Donald Sterling might be losing the LA Clippers, but he’s not going to suddenly view African Americans differently as a result.
The only way that we can secure the borders and fix our challenges abroad is if conservatives unite behind an idea of pure patriotism. It sounds like a sugar-coated concept, but it’s not. By pure patriotism, we mean that conservatives must learn to embrace modern America for what it is. The melting pot has achieved its goal. There are Americans from literally every race, creed, and nation of origin possible. That will not change. I was born in the Philippines and moved here when I was 8-months old but all I know is America and I am probably more conservative than most Tea Party elite. The difference between my understanding and the understanding of those who are still driven by hidden or public views of bigotry is that I know that true patriotism means accepting a clear delineation between America and the rest of the world.
There are no African Americans, Hispanic Americas, or Filipino Americans. There are Americans and non-Americans.
Our fight must not be against the people trying to cross the border. We are not in a position to understand the individual circumstances behind any other human’s plight. Someone might be trying to cross the border because they will be killed if they stay where they are and America offers the only achievable refuge. They might be crossing the border because their child was taken across without their permission and they want to get them back. They might be crossing the border because they were told that they would be allowed to stay and become proper US citizens if they could only make it across, having the intention of contributing and living the American dream.
In all three cases, it would be hard for any American citizen to say, “I still wouldn’t do it.” If you would die if you didn’t get to safety in America, would you not try? If your child was taken from you, would you not do everything you could to get them back? If you truly believed based upon misinformation that you could become a great American yourself if you could only cross the border, would you let that dream go?
We cannot despise those trying to cross the border because we do not know what is motivating them. With that said, we still cannot allow them to do so. We have to hate the game, not the player. We have to deter the action, not the actor. It’s in unifying the motivations around the concept of pure patriotism that we could have any chance of getting support from the rest of the country.
When you view and communicate it from a position of empathetic yet pragmatic fortitude, it’s easier to get support from those who would normally fight against it. The reason for this is that it then becomes clear that it’s in every citizen’s best interests secure the border. Legal immigrants from Latin American countries should be supporting a secure border. They went through the proper steps and have worked to achieve their piece of America by doing it the right way. However, the conservative movement has never been able to get much of their support because they have focused on the people rather than the practice of illegally crossing the border.
For example, it might play well to a certain audience to point out the number of crimes perpetrated by illegals, but it does not resonate to the Hispanic community. Many Hispanics view it as a bigoted attack against their race. The right way to get support for securing the border from legal immigrants is to reward them for doing the right thing and deter those who do not. Unfortunately, it’s easier for illegal immigrants to get help from the government in many cases than for legal immigrants. We must embrace those, such as me, who are here because we went through the proper channels, and that means focusing on the problems that immigration can create without pointing to the people who are doing the crossing.
It’s a subtle shift but an important one.
This is not a fight against illegal immigrants, many of whom have family here that support them. This is a fight against illegal immigration, an act of entering the country by circumventing the system.
How hard would it be to buy air time on national television in Latin American countries alerting them to the fact that rumors of amnesty are false? How difficult would it be work with law enforcement in Mexico, even helping to fund it, in order for them to help stop people from crossing the border? We spend so much time and money fighting the war on drugs, yet securing the borders and assisting the Mexican government to stop trafficking could provide a viable solution to both drugs as well as illegal border crossings.
These may be impractical. I’m not a politician. However, the concept of facing the problem through pure patriotism can keep conservatives focused on achieving goals rather than pushing for victories in November. The funny part is that if they are able to make progress towards achieving these goals rather than spewing the standard rhetoric, we would likely do better in November as a result.