A letter I sent to the Midland Daily News:
In a letter to the editor Alan Corbett, in the context of opposing illegal immigration, said the following: “what part of “illegal” don’t we understand… illegal should be enough for us to oppose them” (Wednesday reader’s view: It’s spelled I-L-L-E-G-A-L, June 30). Mr. Corbett went on to say that by allowing illegal immigration it is ignoring justice and fairness.
To that I say, on the contrary! By using the force of government to stop individuals—who often merely desire to cross a border to enter into willing contracts with others or to escape political oppression—from crossing a border which by no fault of their own they were born on the wrong side of is unjust and unfair. The American spirit is not only one with respect of laws, but one which respects the individual right to better their life. If law flies contrary to the spirit of justice then it has been common for Americans to ignore these laws.
I think Lysander Spooner’s argument is far more convincing when he wrote in “An Essay on the Trial By Jury” that citizens ought to be the “judge of the justice of the law, and to hold all laws invalid, that are…unjust or oppressive, and all persons guiltless in violating, or resisting the execution of, such laws.” This was in response to another unjust set of laws—the Fugitive Slave Laws of the mid-1800s, which forced Northern states to send slaves who tried to escape to their freedom back to their Southern “owners.”