Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Education is not Just for Citizens

The purpose of public education is to make sure that every child living in America gets an education.  Of course we can go on and on about the quality of said education, and whether or not our kids are getting the best they can, but knowing that we even care enough to have such discussions nods to the fact that we all think educating our young people is a good thing.

So doesn't seem just a little fucked up that some people want to deny public education to the children of illegal immigrants?

Is it right to deny someone a basic right based on their citizenship status?  Immigrants have the right to trial by jury, and they have the right to life, liberty, and the persuit of happiness just as much as any other American citizen.  So why is it that we want to deny their children the chance to become educated?

Illegal immigrants should not be eligible to receive Social Security and the like, but their children should not be punished.  No matter what way you slice it, telling a child that he or she cannot receive an education because mommy and daddy are not legally citizens is entirely unjust.  It is wrong to deny another human being the basic rights that you enjoy simply because said human being is not a "legal" member of your society.  Denying these children the education that every human on this planet deserves completely flies in the face of the notion of Christian charity.

If you can't accept this on a philosophical level, then let's try a pragmatic approach.  How often do illegal immigrants get deported?  Are we seeing mass deportations happening?  The answers to those questions are not as often as some might like, and no.  There's little we can do to keep them out, and there's even less we can do to get them out.  So knowing that their children will probably be here for a long time, wouldn't it be more advantageous to educate them so they can be useful to society?

Nah, that's just idealistic horseshit, right?  Well considering that gangs are primarily made up of uneducated minority kids, I think it would be to our advantage to not deny education to any child, if only for the reason that it might result in less violent, gang-related crime.  Just as well, not educating them pretty much screws them from ever obtaining their citizenship in the future.

Always a classic.
I always love posing this question to people who count Jesus as their Lord and Savior: what would he do?  It might sound like a trite question, but it carries the same relevance and merit regardless.  After all, we charitable Christians are supposed to follow his example, yes?

I realize the situation is a little more complicated than that, and that we can't always uphold all of our principles in the face of reality and pragmatism, but one should at least feel that disavowing education to children is regrettable.  I get the feeling that many, many Republicans have little, if any, compunction about it.

20 comments:

Karen Howes said...

I disagree with you on a couple of levels here, Jack: first, that public education is a "right." Public education is, and what DESIGNED to be, a tool of Marxism to influence children. The idea was actually to weaken parental influence. Read the Communist Manifesto, government education was one of its goals.

Second, illegals have NO rights here at all. Because they're ILLEGAL, meaning they're here without permission. Want rights? Come in through the FRONT door.

There may not be much we can do to deport those that are here-- except to harshly punish any business that is caught employing them-- but we can sure as hell enforce our laws and protect our borders. We're not doing that very well, and that's also intentional: the Dems want as many voters as they can get.

Silverfiddle said...

Education in this country is a legal right, so it is subject to what the law says.

If you passed a law saying only citizens are entitled, no one's rights are violated. It is not a fundamental human right, since it is a positive right and someone else must be coerced to make that "right" happen for someone else. Perfect in a legal sense, but it doesn't work in natural law.

My question is, where is this happening? And if illegal aliens stand up and demand we educate their kids, why doesn't the government deport them?

Of course, that's a ridiculous questions, since the democrats filled a hearing room will illegal aliens as a propaganda prop for one of their hearings. Of course, immigration officials were no where to be seen.

Our government has made a complete mockery of the law, and immigration is the least of it.

Jack Camwell said...

My point is that I don't think there is an actual law saying that only American citizens can go to public schools. And if there are such laws, then such laws are unjust.

Karen, every *human being* deserves access to education regardless of citizenship status. These children did nothing wrong, and denying them the same opportunities as any other child, simply because of the choices their parents made, is completely contrary to the spirit and principles of the religion you follow.

Do agape and caritas mean nothing to you?

Silverfiddle said...

Jack: You raise excellent points, but you are confusing morality with the law.

We are not a Christian theocracy; we are a nation of laws.

Jack Camwell said...

What are laws but the projection of certain agreed upon moral standards?

Sure, we can't make all morality into law as that would probably be fairly opressive, and of course I don't want our society to be a Christian theocracy.

I tried to appeal to readers on two levels: on one level the Christian morality that some of my readers are always espousing, and the other level the premise of basic human decency.

It is universally wrong, regardless of one's religious convictions, to punish a child for the sins of their parents. That is *not* justice regardless of what the law says.

Karen Howes said...

Jack, it may not be the children's fault, but the bottom line is that we still don't owe them anything. If they are entitled to education, that's their own country's responsibility, not ours.

The "children" are being used, much the same way terrorists hide behind women and children.

As for Christianity, I don't recall Jesus every saying that people are entitled to the goods or benefits of countries in which they have no right to be-- or that breaking immigration laws is okay.

Damien Charles QC said...

The first country to have a national compulsary and free education system (1872) was in fact Scotland and though appeared during the same time as Karl Marx was producing his books, it was in fact created by an increase in a wealthy class willing to pay for the rest of society to grow - just to eliminate the idea that public schooling was a communist creation - though certainly they understood how it can be abused.

There are quite a few countries in the world that have laws that demand all children must go to school (or have an education) between the ages of 5 and 16. The UK, Australia and New Zealand are included in that group. Thus, for example, even refugee camps run on Christmas Island by Australia have to have a school and teachers managed by the country.

I support compulsary education and even for refugees because it is the responsibility of the host nation to ensure that the rights of children are kept and that parents, politics and economics should not inhibit that right.

As for illegal immigrants in the US, either make them legal or be more efficient in not letting illegals in, but do not punish those already existing because of the incompetence or inability of your existing and past systems.

Jack Camwell said...

Karen, Jesus supposedly gave his LIFE for your sins . . .

Do you really think he would turn anyone away for any reason, especially a child?

You know that this "what's mine is mine," mentality is completely contrary to his entire ministry.

Jesus had compassion for all persons, most of all the children, so why can't you?

Z said...

I'm in California...our illegal kids are now going to get practically free college educations (I only had 'practically' because maybe it's 'totally', i'm not sure). My friends and family members are working their fingers to the bone paying for college tuition which illegals don't have to pay. That's wrong no matter how anybody slices it.
I do approve of the fact that the new bill calls for 3 years in high school or a high school diploma to warrant this ridiculous free help, but at least that's something. The odd thing is that one of the things Gov Brown said about free college was that "Kids will be better able to enter our work force and that makes our state stronger" Odd, when it's his party raping our state of jobs. ridiculous, actually. Particularly ODD when it's still illegal to get a job if you're illegal!

Jack, but you do make persuasive arguments for educating illegal children..they should not be punished for the sins of their parents. It IS rough, however, when I see this discussed on local California news and Hispanic kids say they're entitled to free school, free college, etc (....and, when asked about their illegal parents, the kid retorts using 'undocumented' instead of 'illegal'......these kids are primed, trust me. They're politically primed.

And SF is right (as usual)...we're a nation of laws and if illegals are ILLEGAL, then isn't it condoning illegal behavior to reward with educations, free or not? This is about agenda.

Karen's right, too......There's even scripture from Jesus saying "you don't work, you don't eat" :-) Fancy that!

Country Thinker said...

"What are laws but the projection of certain agreed upon moral standards?"

As a libertarian we have had some pretty good (but respectful) disagreements in the past. This is one of them. Ethics, not morality should guide policy making. Morals are personal religious standards, and I do not believe that policies built upon morals are consistent with a free society.

That said, the Supreme Court has held that the children of illegal immigrants are entitled to public education. I'm guessing the same logic will apply to ObamaCare. While I disagree that anyone has a right to demand anything from anyone else, I also believe in the rule of law. We have a system in which the Supreme Court has the final say, and even though I disagree with their conclusion, it is the law, and I accept it as so.

Jack Camwell said...

Ted,
Some would say that murder and theft are moral issues. I would agree with that, as killing and stealing are morally wrong as well as ethically.

Z,
I am not advocating free college for them. Hell, I'm sitting on student loan debt myself, and they do not deserve a free pass for any reason. I am simply advocating that every child living in this country receive a k-12 education that any human being deserves.

And Karen,
Where do you think the just law theory comes from? Out of thin air? The just law theory is based on Jesus' ministry. Jesus broke all sorts of laws while he was alive. Don't you remember when he healed a sick person on the Sabbath? He had technically broken the Jewish law. If you're trying to suggest to me that Jesus was anything but compassionate and understanding, then I would seriously like to know why you picture Jesus as a hard ass.

William McCullough said...

The real issue that needs to be resolved before any bomb throwing is reforming the educational system back to equitable standards so that these immigrant and children of citizens at least have a clue what America was intended to be rather than propagandized with false economic and social models that have never been successful - You would have thought that Obama for all his 'vaunted' education could have figutred that out....

Jersey McJones said...

The problem with educating the children of illegal aliens is that the school districts feel they're not getting the funding they need to educate them. This, of course, is not true. Illegal aliens pay sales, and property, and income taxes. They pay the same fees and fines.

Though many illegal aliens do not pay income taxes, it has little effect on school funding, which is only about 6% federal, and is based on census numbers, not the location of taxpayers.

So, really, people like us need to educate people as to how the education system is funded, and then maybe people would stop blaming little children for problems of their own making. Follow the money and you'll find the problem. ;)

JMJ

Z said...

I hear you, Jack......just trying to make my point that I do agree with you in some ways re the K-12 but how absurd people take things if you give an inch, sadly.

ickenittle post said...

it may not be the children's fault, but the bottom line is that we still don't owe them anything.

Wow Karen- what a statement! Guess you'd be the kind of person who would stand by and watch a houseful of "illegals" including children burn to the ground and not bother calling 911- because they aren't tax paying "real" Americans, because we don't owe them anything.

No wonder America is so f-ed up thanks partly to schizophrenic, psuedo Christians, bereft of empathy, where the milk of human kindness has run bone dry.

Just which Jesus do you believe in?, and which god do you pray to?

Poor Jesus-he needs to come back and slap some of his followers up-side the head.

And don't tell me you were talking about "rights" that's horseshit.

Geeeez

Anonymous said...

hmmm, well tell ya what ol Jack, I half-agree and half-disagree.

I agree with ya on the the "well they are here to stay already, wtf do we do now?" Our Public education system may be shabby and crappy, but it *is* better than nothing. I would rather have the kids get some sort of chance at basic education than none at all.

Where I call foul is where your religious tones of charity come into play. I firmly 100% believe that people who benefit from this "charity" as a whole do nothing to stop the cycle. It boils down to this: If you continue to reward bad behavior, eventually you are going to have to choose between educating the illegal Mexican boy or that 100% 5th generation American boy. Would you want your children going to a public school where the attention and intellectual nurturing of the teachers is hamstrung by a lack of resources and too many kids who's parents barely pay into the system? How is that right?

The best way imo to wrangle this issue is to cut the head off the snake, enforce our laws about immigration, and tighten our grip on our border. If you want to come to this country then do it via the proper channels, which we should also improve. If you want to be a shitheel and come for the free shit, then peace be the journey, you are on your own. Thats the way it should be.

Jack Camwell said...

You all have to realize that although I include a CHristian charity argument, that's not really my sentiment on it.

I whole heartedly believe that a sense of charity and compassion is not exclusive to Christianity, but I do believe that compassion is an extremely important thing.

Do grown adult illegal immigrants deserve any handouts? No. But their children should at least be educated so that they can possibly turn out to be a good thing for society.

The Christian morality thing was more to appeal to some of my readers whom I know are deeply Christian.

Z said...

"Wow Karen- what a statement! Guess you'd be the kind of person who would stand by and watch a houseful of "illegals" including children burn to the ground and not bother calling 911- because they aren't tax paying "real" Americans, because we don't owe them anything." that's quite an undue and astonishing leap to label someone who believes in self reliance when at all possible to not caring if they burn to the ground: you with the media?

Anonymous said...

You know, i saw this 2 days ago and didnt comment because i thought i may get burned at the steak

My big problem with this was simply going ot be the fact that i didnt want to pay for someone elses education. TO CLARIFY... if they are not paying INTO the school system, their kids shouldent be getting educated. It would be like me hitching a ride to a privat catholic school... and i am neither catholic nor had i paied a scent into the school. in this case, the private school is the USA.

however. after this post

"Jersey McJones said...
The problem with educating the children of illegal aliens is that the school districts feel they're not getting the funding they need to educate them. This, of course, is not true. Illegal aliens pay sales, and property, and income taxes. They pay the same fees and fines.

Though many illegal aliens do not pay income taxes, it has little effect on school funding, which is only about 6% federal, and is based on census numbers, not the location of taxpayers.

So, really, people like us need to educate people as to how the education system is funded, and then maybe people would stop blaming little children for problems of their own making. Follow the money and you'll find the problem. ;)

JMJ
"

my protests are not nearly as strong.

if their parents are infact paying into the US educational system, then no, i have no issues with them attending. its the "free" thing that gets to me.


~ Smitty

Damien Charles QC said...

Smitty, I understand your point and it is compelling and has logic within it.

What I think (though of course this is my comment not theirs) is that there is a moral and perhaps even a legal obligation to do so. We are not talking about college but the basic manditory school ages (5 to 16).

The moral side of it is the question, "the rights of the child" to having an education. Should that depend on who their parents are or their contribution? They are there and though there is a great value in working out how not to allow legals (or make legal), the fact is that they are there and should they be denied that moral right?

The second is the legal side of it. I am not sure US laws in this matter but most western countries have a manditory rule of such children going to a school (or being correctly educated such as at home) and be sure that rules does not say "US legal chidren" but just the generic "children must". Also there is the obligations under international treaties that actuallly stipulate that the signatory nations must provide that manditory minimum education - of which I know the US was a signatory, in fact it was the co-sponsor with New Zealand.

This is a good topic and I see no reason for burning you at the stake over valid arguments - it is the ones that throw in the emotive mindless ones that I would consider planting another bushel of fire-wood under....