Comments about ‘FAIR: Mormon immigration policy considered at conference’

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Published: Sunday, Aug. 14 2011 10:13 p.m. MDT

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IdahoStranger
NEWDALE, ID

For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle? 1st Corinthians 14:8

The Utah Compact: Why is there no distinction made between legal and illegal immigrants? They are not the same.

How does an illegal remain here without violating other laws?

Why is there no mention of compassion for those whose identify has been stolen by the illegal so they can remain here?

Does the church suggest that I should "turn the other cheek" and ignore the hand that is in my pocket stealing from me? Or my neighbor? Should I not sound the alarm?

Should the US become increasingly made up of "immigrants" who do not become citizens?

The Mexican President said: "Where there is a Mexican, there is Mexico."
How can we build a nation of "one" if we are not first Americans but rather "Mexican-American", "Irish-American", "African-American" etc.?

Are Law Enforcement Officers sworn to uphold the entire law or just parts of it?

Why is the Church not making a noise about the federal governments failure to enforce the immigration laws? What pressure are they exerting in this area?

An uncertain sound indeed!

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Esquire
Springville, UT

She pretty much is taking a black and white approach to this. It raises a lot of questions. For one, obeying the law is not always the right thing to do. Mormons in the 19th and 20th Century should realize this. Life isn't so clear cut as this. We admire LDS Germans in WWII who resisted Hitler. Should they be condemned? And how about all the LDS people I talk to who complain about illegals and then they themselves hire them to perform services for them because the price is better? If there were no jobs, there would be fewer illegals. The inconsistencies and the hypocrisy are astounding.

zer28
Ogden, UT

This is a really hard topic to discuss. I served a spanish speaking mission in California, so I saw people that were in the country illegally being baptized. Yes, they are here illegally, but what about their intentions? In most cases that I came across (not always, of course) the people are here to improve their lives and send money back to their families in Mexico, or wherever they're from. They understand that their very presence in the states is a crime, but they don't actively commit any other crimes, other than trying to provide a better life for their families.

In my own opinion, and others might disagree, I believe that if it were up to the Savior, I don't think he would hesitate to allow these humble people to be baptized. "...for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart." - 1 Samuel 16:7

goitalone
w bountiful, ut

@crivas and any others still pushing the "illegal pioneer to Mexico immigration"

Please cite or reference the laws at the time which precluded immigration into Mexican territory. If you cannot cite them, stop using this example for an excuse for the current violation of U.S. immigration laws.

I believe strongly that immigration law and enforcement is woefully inadequate. The process for legal immigration is seriously draconian and conveluted, BUT, the law is still the law. Hiding behind its flaws is still not a reason for violation.

ShaunMcC
La Verkin, UT

A moral and principled solution to this problem must include the following:

A drastic increase in the number of work, visitation and immigration visas by the Federal government. This should be accompanied by a drastic reduction in the time it takes to do this legally. A person wishing to enter this country legally can wait up to 10 years or more.

A recognition that those who are here illegally must repent (or make it right) if they want the blessings of citizenship or even government services of any type (driver's licenses, assistance, etc.)

A process by which they can do this - I propose presenting themselves for deportation with the understanding that they will be second in line to return legally - right behind those who are already doing it legally.

A requirement that those who want to stay here (not just visit or have a work visa) must assimilate by learning the language and laws and complying with the requirements (car insturance, etc.) that the rest of us have to live by instead of getting special treatment and privileges.

Those who remain illegal after having these options presented pay the price of incarceration and/or deportation.

ShaunMcC
La Verkin, UT

If I were in the position of some illegals, trying to save my family from starvation, I would do whatever I felt was necessary - including sneaking into another country where I could get enough money to send them so they could survive. We need to provide a way that serves both compassion and the rule of law. That is what I believe the Savior would do. He seems to believe we can serve both justice and mercy.

SLars
Provo, UT

@AZEIR

We don't turn people into criminals. We have legal immigration for the honest people. If they choose to be dishonest, then they choose to be criminals. All industrialized countries of the world have immigration laws. And it's illegal in those countries also.

It's not just coming here, it the laws broken to stay and work here. And the laws broken to hire them.

Remember the woman caught in adulty? woman? Jesus told her to go, and sin no more. So I think he would object to baptism as long as they continue sinning. Forgiveness to return home and come back legally, in my opinion, would be his message.

goitalone
w bountiful, ut

C'mon Esquire,

the U.S INS is not Hitler. You say you are LDS, but only in the areas with which you agree?

"Obeying the law isn't always the right thing to do". So we get to pick and choose the laws we want to obey? That is an extremely slippery slope with no safe landing zone. I think even you know that isn't right.

Without question, there is hypocrisy(sic) in the opinions of common people, but ignoring the law doesn't rectify the situation.

Employers must be held accountable, but the offending governments must also stop fostering the flaunting of U.S. law. And, those who illegally burden the system must be brought to account. This philosophical issue has far and wide reaching financial impact on our economy which cannot simply be swept under the political rug.

That said, for you LDS out there, search your BOM and you'll find reference there to the day when the Lamanites will be returned to their lands. I'm not proclaiming doctrine, but it makes one wonder.

goitalone
w bountiful, ut

Fred Vader in OK makes a clear point.

When serving in Germany, I had to "anmeld" and "abmeld", register my legality to be in any city, upon every arrival and departure. It was the law, and I was clearly instructed by leaders that I was to be accountable to the local and regional laws. I was there as a religious emmisary, but that didn't absolve me from "honoring, sustaining and upholding the law.

Or am I just being obtuse?

gudnuf4guvwrk
Salt Lake City, UT

First off- to Fitness Freak-
$100 Billion? Ridiculous, I'd love to see your source on that. I've seen three sources that peg it at anywhere from $11 to $20 Billion and that includes all immigrants not just the illegals. Stop leading with your emotions and check your facts.

I assume anyone who wants to kick out all the illegals is probably independently wealthy because I guarantee unless you are, you won't be able to afford fresh produce or many other goods that rely on aliens for manual labor. People are oblivious to how much our economy relies on this help.

Finally, legally immigrating to this country is a difficult and expensive process. It is outside the capacity of many. Those in power do not have the will to change that. Until this happens, no matter what fence we build, dangerous and undesirable illegal immigration will happen. Make it easier to follow the law and there will be less problems with people not following it. I guarantee the US will be better off in every way too if this happens.

Informed Voter
South Jordan, UT

How does one "get right with the law" while continuing to break it? To me it should mean going back to their native country and applying legally to re-enter the U.S. -- not hide out while waiting for amnesty.

snowman
Provo, UT

RRB: You can love thy neighbor as a person but you can also not like that they are here illegally. They are committing a crime. They can keep the families intact by deporting the whole family not just the parents.

crivas: No one went to Mexico illegally.

Zack Tacorin
Salt Lake City, UT

This is fascinating to me. To a large extent it seems the comments on this story represent believing Mormons being somewhat antagonistic toward the stance of the LDS Church on immigration. Ive been LDS for more than 20 years, but no longer believe the Church is what it claims to be. Yet I find myself agreeing with many of the comments here and agreeing with the Church. Yes, I think our nation should enforce the laws of the land. If a person is found to be here illegally, I think that person should be deported. At the same time, I think our immigration laws make it unnecessarily difficult to come here and work legally, and I agree with the Church that we should approach this issue with compassion and a desire to understand those who are coming here without legal documentation. I believe most illegal immigrants are inspired to come here by their values to improve the lot of their families. If we can help them do this through legal channels, I think wed all benefit.

Thanks for the article and the discussion!

Zack

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

There are several issues that seem to be combined together. The first issue is the question of whether a law is being broken when people enter this country without authorization or who stay here longer than allowed. That question is easily answered. The U.S. has laws that clearly state who may enter, under what conditions they may enter, and how long they may stay, once they have entered.

The next question is WHO determines whether those laws apply, the individual or the courts. In America, the courts determine points of law, not the individuals. The proper place to debate law is in the courtroom.

Another questions is "worthiness". As a member of the L.D.S. Church, I leave all determination of worthiness to the bishop. He is the "common judge" for his congregation. If further determination has to be made, he can call on the stake presidency and the high council to hold a more formal proceeding.

We can get into a lot of trouble if we try to finagle our way through life, claiming that this law applies but that law does not. It's best to be completely honest, all the time.

Arm of Orion
Cottonwood Heights, UT

There is a solution but it is five steps and will be hated by the right. It goes like this

1. Lock down the borders as completely as possible

2. Conditional amnesty for those here already. (ie Those without a felony charge)

3. A change of the immigration law to allow more skilled workers into the Union. These laws should have a provision to change the number allowed depending on a combination of economic, educational, and other factors

4. A change in immigration law to hammer businesses that hire illegal immigrants after the new laws are made.

5. Periodic review and revision of laws to be certain that they meet the needs of immirgants, citizens, and businesses.

With this plan I think we could solve the problem of illegal immigration.

RRB
SLC, UT

@gudnuf4guvwrk

FAIRs study showed the cost of illegal immigration at $113 billion to taxpayers. That Federal, state and local. The cost to Utah was over 400 million per year. The study was a government study.

And I picked produce and fruit before. You may pay $100-150 a year at the most. Farmers have unlimited visas at their disposal.

Coming here legally takes time, and that's only right, since the demand is so high. The waiting is long in only four countries, Mexico, Philippines, China, and India. That's because of the demand in those countries. It use to be the individual immigrating, now entire families want to come all at once.

Visas can only be given out for the work available. What good does it do to give out visas when there are no jobs?

anti-liar
Salt Lake City, UT

No, legalizing illegals (undoubtedly the implied point) would NOT "make the country better."

"...better, moral laws..."

Current Federal immigration laws are "immoral?" Again, false.

"Did we forget what the scripture said about visiting those in prison?"

What is this supposed to mean -- not enforcing the law? Not sending criminals to prison, then?

"The bedrock moral issue is how we treat each other as children of God." And, from the same press release: "...any state legislation that only contains enforcement provisions is likely to fall short of the high moral standard of treating each other as children of God."

The subtle but quite clear insinuation here is that to enforce the law is to mistreat mankind. Absolutely false.

"The importance of keeping families intact."

A specious statement, in this context. Deportees are perfectly free to take their families with them.

If the First Presidency endorses the contents of the press releases cited (as is being implied), then why don't they attach their names to them?

Decidedly we indeed have more to worry about in this discussion than just the 12th Article of Faith. We've also got a little 13th Article of Faith problem going on: "We believe in being honest..."

ShaunMcC
La Verkin, UT

@ARM, I agree with most of your idea (compare with my earlier post) with the exception of the amnesty. The proposal to require aliens to actually go through the correct process serves the rule of law without being unnecessarily harsh and is workable if the government changes the number of and speed with which they deal with immigration requests (as both you and I suggest). Thanks for thinking this through - most people just post knee-jerk reactions and not solutions.

MTaylor
PROVO, UT

With over one million coming to this country legally each year, how can anyone say it's to difficult? It's not if you follow the laws.

One million green cards each year and people think it's difficult and the laws are unfair?

It's business and their lust for illegal labor, just ask the business immigration lawyers quoted in the story. Getting more cheap labor for business is their job.

I agree with other commentators, the Church can do what they want, but the rules should apply equally. Breaking laws, including felonies should not prevent baptism, Temple, or being a bishop. They should not count against anyone. I urge the Bishops to be fair in their dealings.

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