Comments about ‘A faith divided: Opinions on illegal immigration vary among Utah's Mormons’

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Published: Sunday, Jan. 2 2011 12:00 a.m. MST

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Provo, UT

We will never be able to let in all the people who want to come here. So we have quotas to protect our citizens jobs, and to keep our country from building to fast an overburdening our social services.

The only way to be fair to everyone is to demand that people follow the laws, including our leaders.

Our immigration and worker programs are set by need, not by demands of foreign citizens and their supporters. It makes little sense bringing in a million people, when we have 15 million out of work.

Richard Saunders
Provo, UT

@ hamberg | 2:16 p.m. Jan. 2, 2011
My comments were directed at believing members of the LDS church. If they wish to follow their leaders, then my point stands. And yes, illegal immigrants can get baptized. Google an article from the USA Today called "LDS members conflicted about illegal migrant growth." and look under the paragraph titled 'No questions asked.' I'll let God decide if their baptism is valid, and I won't pretend to know. Anyone who says they believe in "honoring, sustaining, and obeying the law" for illegal immigrants but then routinely speeds or doesn't wear a seat belt or downloads music without paying for it or rolls through stop signs is a hyprocrite.

Jazz Bass Man
Wellsville, Utah

I have a question for all of you bleeding heart libs that advocate giving amnesty to illegals and opening our borders.

What you're really saying is that we should justify letting all the illegals stay only because they hopped the border, and we should do that in the name of "compassion". What about the MILLIONS of other people in the world, many who are worse off than illegal mexicans, who would certainly like to come here and become Americans? You all are really talking out of both sides of your mouth. Either we be fair and let everyone in who wants to come, or we deport those who hopped the border illegally. Showing "compassion" on border hoppers because they committed a crime and butted in front of the line is no solution.

Either we have laws and enforce them, or we don't. If we don't enforce one law, then we should just throw them all out and live in anarchy.

Utah absolutely needs an Arizona type law just so we can get rid of all the gangbanger illegals from mexico who are fleeing Arizona to come here.

Jaime Lee Bonberger
Houston, TX

to ideasnstuff:

None of what was considered Utah territory in July of 1847 was under Mexican control. The war was already lost and Mexico officially surrendered in September 1847.

The Mormon Battalion passed through New Mexico, southern Arizona and along today's California-Mexico border in late 1846 and received zero military resistence. Mexico had already relinquished control.

Some of your ideas, however, are interesting. I don't think the polar solutions being proposed by both extreme sides of the argument will benefit anyone.

Cottonwood Heights, UT

This is not as simple of an issue as many make it out to be. The reality is that the best way to do away with illegal immigration is to allow greater legal immigration for those who want to come here and work hard at jobs that need to be filled. I know that some say that the unemployed would take there jobs if they could but that has not been the reality. I have not known of any unemployed computer programmers that were willing to shear sheep in southern Utah or pick oranges in Florida. I believe the Church can see that we have a broken immigration system and that you have millions of Gods Children that our caught in the middle of international forces that are beyond their control.

Mapleton, UT

The problem of undocumented Hispanic labor is a catch-22. On the one hand the labor of undocumented migrants--which we have never duly credited--is integral to our economy in response to our needs for growth, while on the other hand our laws are in opposition to the efforts of migrant workers in fulfilling what we in essence have sought of them.

So now in our arrogance and ignorance disguised as righteous indignation over minor infractions of law in a role that we have forced upon them we seek to punish our undocumented laborers and teach them a good lesson.

Payson, UT

I'm not interested in punishing people harshly for "minor infractions of the law". I'm interested in stopping the flow of undocumented aliens over the southern border. They don't come over here to live so much as to get work or move illegal substances. Those who come here to work often send the buld of their money back home where the USD buys more.
Is anyone not clear that we are talking strictly about Mexico here?
Once our grandfathers migrated here in bulk once upon a time, but that's just not the situation any more. All other countries are pretty strict on who can come into them. Why not us?
Also, while we are providing a pressure release valve for the "South", people who are willing to get up and make a difference in their situation are just coming over here instead of improving the home land.
That's not doing Mexico any favors.

Jonathan Eddy
Payson, UT

"And now, verily I say unto you concerning the laws of the land, it is my will that my people should observe to do all things whatsoever I command them.

And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before me.

Therefore, I, the Lord, justify you, and your brethren of my church, in befriending that law which is the constitutional law of the land;

And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil.

I, the Lord God, make you free, therefore ye are free indeed; and the law also maketh you free.

Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn."

Before you judge the actions of any human being, I would warn you to be in sync with the will of God toward HIS people and HIS land and HIS borders. Flag wavers are quite a spectacle.

Cottonwood Heights, UT

If you believe in the principles stated in the Utah Compact you can still step forward and sign your name to it. Lets take a stand for what is right.

Provo, UT

My ancestors came to the Salt Lake valley in 1847. The land was not owned by Mexico, but was a claimed territory of the USA. One of my ancestors was able to join his relatives a few months later after the Mormon battalion was decommission by the American government from the war with Mexico.

The Utah compact did not deal with illegal immigration, but with legal immigration. It does not contain the word illegal or undocumented in it.

Antelope, CA

I think weve hit most the common arguments from both sides. When this issue is studied in depth, other factors surface that haven't been mentioned yet. For starters, look up dependency theory and world-systems approach and you'll see the U.S. is one of the primary reasons Mexico is so poor. Delve a little deeper into the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo and you'll find the U.S. took the Mexican territory by trickery and force similar to how the rest of the continent was acquired. Hence many of the Native Americans who have a historical right to be here originate from what was Mexico and yet theyre being told to go home! Don't get me wrong, I believe the U.S. Constitution was inspired and that only in this country could the Church be set up so the Gospel could eventually spread throughout the world. I also believe the Lord bowed his head in shame when he saw how his White children treated his Native and Black children. I am sure it could have been done another way but alas, He cannot take away our agency. With that background knowledge...

Antelope, CA

Here's what I think comprehensive immigration should look like:

1) One group of undocumented immigrants is well established in the U.S. Theyve been here a long time, have kids here, have permanent jobs, etc. Theyre not going to leave. They are the ones who have put the most into the economy and paid the most into Social Security (of which theyll likely never see a penny) and taxes, much more than they have taken out. They should have a path to citizenship.

2) Another group of undocumented immigrants is not as established. If they had a chance at making a living in their own country, many would go back. They need something like the Perpetual Education Fund so they have access to money for college, job training, or to set up a business in their own countries. Without some sort of initial financial aid they will never be able to come out of poverty and likely won't leave here.

3) Then there is the group who is not here yet but will make the trek here if they can't make a living in their country.

Antelope, CA

They also need a Perpetual Education Fund so they have a reason to stay in their countries. Lots of NPOs/religious organizations already do this type of sponsoring.

*These 3 groups of immigrants tend to come from very poor socioeconomic circumstances. They haven't succeeded because they've never had the chance. They do not wish to assimilate and have come (or will come) here out of economic necessity.

4) The last group of immigrants are the ones who simply desire to become Americans and either assimilate or acculturate. Many of them had money which allowed them to jump ahead in line to legally come here. Lots look down upon immigrants in the first 3 groups. However, many outstay their visas while here and become quite poor right along with everyone else. In the meantime they're forced to pay college tuition that's several times more expensive since they're not legal residents.

*Obviously drug and human traffickers and terrorists need to be pursued no matter what theyre immigration status. Amnesty is not the answer. All that does is keep groups 1 and 2 here and encourage group 3 to come who will never get amnesty.

Antelope, CA

A comprehensive solution needs to include a path to citizenship for group 1, economic incentives to go back to their countries of origin for group 2, economic incentives to stay in their countries of origin for group 3, and a revamping of the whole process of legal immigration so it's more fair for group 4; fair within single countries and fair across different countries. The U.S. plays lots of favoritism. Where I live I see religious refugees who got a free trip here, free citizenship, and a free ride through college. They go to school right alongside the children of Latino immigrants who came here out of necessity with nothing but the shirts on their backs to work the fields for minimum wage just to be able to provide for their families. We could use the millions saved in border patrol, Medicare, welfare, etc. to work with the Mexican government in setting up these programs. We owe more than that anyways. Maybe we could get rid of some of the corruption down there and even tackle PEMEX at the same time. No tax increases for Americans, only a re-channeling of money for a time.

Salt Lake City, UT

They are already here and most of their families include US Citizens and Undocumented people in a mix. A mass deportation would take over 25 years and separate families causing more damage to society and to our financial system. They should be fined just as we would fine any other Civil infraction. 40% came in legal and their visas have expired. We need to take a reasonable approach rather than just a cold enforcement approach. We should deal with the felony convictions by coming down with the hammer of the law. The rest of the Civil infractions cannot be dealt with the same way according to the current law.

If they were caught crossing it was a class B criminal misdemeanor and if they were not caught or even if their visa expired then it is "Unlawful Presence" (11 million) which is not criminal it is only CIVIL. That is why the LDS Church gives them callings, even leadership callings, sends them on missions and allows them to attend the Temple. 2 Nephi 1:6 is often quoted and for most of them there is no legal line they can go get into in their own counrties.

terra nova
Park City, UT

Those who pathetically play the one-note symphony of the "rule of law" do not understand "natural law." When the colonists broke the "rule of law" (becoming illegals) they appealed to "natural law" with these words:

"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation." (Opening lines of the Declaration of Independence)

"Natural law" and the "rule of law" must merge and harmonize in order to create peaceful orderly government. It was so in 1776 and it is true today. Those that understand this principle are more willing to consider the deeper implications of our nation and the laws we enact, "for the people, of the people and by the people."

The Utah Compact got it right. It is merciful and reasonable. It is balanced. We can and should support it.

Salt Lake City, UT

Self-reliance and obeying the law are two huge Mormon tenants. Illegal immigration flies in the face of both...

shakespeare's fool
Pleasant Grove, UT

What really matters is that 10% of an illegals income is greater than 10% of their legal income in their country of origin.

Follow the money.

Saratoga Springs, UT

Jabing the Desnews editor for giving a EC makes your comment look foolish. The rest of your comments look like you took them form the talk radio talking points of the day list.

People are getting tired of phrases like:
Illegal is Illegal. The law is the law. Bleeding heart libs. They are getting real old.

Some LDS people see illegals as children of god and their brothers and sisters. Others see them as nothing but criminals.

Some see their status is equal to a speeding ticket. Others see their status is next to murder.

Some would like to find solutions to the problem. Others see deportation the only solution.

Some would like to forgive and forget and help illegas progress, keeping families united and understand the problem with immigration is very complex. Others will not be happy until every illegal pays for his crime and is deported or self deports.

Some use the letter of the law, others the rule of the law.

Some LDS saints even go as far as wanting temple recomends of illegal immigrants taken away sadly. Others roll their eyes and wonder who are these people to judge.

Mr. Bean
SLC, Utah

@What in Tucket?

"At least let us not admit HIV positive individuals, those with tuberculosis and other contagious diseases."

If you can catch them for the requisite tests you can throw them out of the country at the same time.

"Those with postgraduate degrees I would give a green card."

We have plenty of citizens with postgraduate degrees that are unemployed. We don't need foreigners to take our jobs.



"I'm so tired of people responding so simplistically to this complex issue by smugly saying 'Obey the law.'"

I'm so sick and tired of paying out billions in unemployment benefits when illegals are here taking Americans' jobs.

"Because what we're talking about here is CRAFTING the law, and CREATING laws that are fair and just."

Only laws that require deportation are fair and just. Anything else is amnesty.

"I like the way Elder Marlin K. Jensen put it: it doesn't do much good to simply say 'obey the law' when the law itself is already broken."

He needs to rethink his position. The law is broken not only by crossing the border uninvited but by staying here uninvited.

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