Thursday 21st September 2017

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After DACA, Faithful Are Hungry For Eternal Truths

September 9, 2017 Frontpage No Comments

By CHRISTOPHER MANION

On Tuesday, September 5, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the U.S. government was rescinding the “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” program, commonly known as DACA. As Sessions explained, DACA “essentially provided a legal status for recipients for a renewable two-year term, work authorization and other benefits” to some 800,000 adult illegal aliens.
“This policy was implemented unilaterally to great controversy and legal concern,” Sessions added, “after Congress rejected legislative proposals to extend similar benefits on numerous occasions to this same group of illegal aliens.
“In other words, the executive branch, through DACA, deliberately sought to achieve what the legislative branch specifically refused to authorize on multiple occasions. Such an open-ended circumvention of immigration laws was an unconstitutional exercise of authority by the Executive Branch.
“The effect of this unilateral executive amnesty, among other things, contributed to a surge of unaccompanied minors on the southern border that yielded terrible humanitarian consequences. It also denied jobs to hundreds of thousands of Americans by allowing those same jobs to go to illegal aliens,” Sessions concluded.
The decision was long anticipated, since Donald Trump had made termination of DACA a central plank of his presidential campaign’s platform. Trump vigorously opposed offering amnesty to the millions of illegal aliens residing in the United States, while Barack Obama and Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton supported such a move.
Sessions’ announcement had been expected, and the left was ready with its unctuous routine, with Bill Clinton and Barack Obama oozing their patented immoralizing. But these “usual suspects” echoed a strange chorus, a pro-DACA coalition that included billionaires Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, and investor Warren Buffett. Moreover, behind the billionaires there marched several groups representing other business interests, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
As Catholic leader Paul Weyrich explained long ago, political coalitions usually attract groups that, while they support the coalition’s specific policy goal, they often disagree on other issues. For instance, the billionaires and other business lobbyists, regardless of their political party, support DACA because they want the cheap labor provided by the constant flow of immigrant labor.
In contrast, Clinton and Obama support DACA because they expect it to produce millions of new Democrat voters, once the participants acquire legal status and invite their extended families to join them in the U.S. After all, virtually all the DACA participants are citizens of countries that are rife with corruption, so they would naturally gravitate to the party that is most familiar to them and their families.
Adding a unique flavor to the coalition, the governments of Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador also criticized Sessions’ decision. In fact, earlier this year, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto made a widely distributed video that contained a simple message for Mexicans living in the U.S., legally or illegally: “Don’t come back!”
Peña Nieto, a puppet of Mexico’s entrenched ruling class known as the “corruptos,” announced that his government would provide $50 million to Mexican consulates in the U.S. to help illegals in their efforts to avoid deportation. But that amount is small change compared to the billions that are sent back home by Mexicans in the United States. In fact, the Mexican government uses the United States as its primary provider of welfare benefits to Mexicans.
That informal policy works in two ways: First, throughout Mexico, thousands of communities depend on the “remesas” (remittances) sent home every year from relatives, legal and illegal, in the U.S. Amounting to tens of billions of dollars a year, these funds amount to Mexico’s only welfare system; that government’s version is so riddled with corruption that it’s virtually nonexistent.
Of course, the “corruptos” also tax the remittances as soon as they arrive: Moreover, recipient families must pay bribes to the police chief, the mayor, and the local gang leader(s) — or fear for their lives and their livelihood.
Second, Mexicans arriving in the U.S. immediately acquire the economic status of their hard-working middle-class “paisanos” (countrymen) back home. Not only do they acquire free education and health care unavailable at home, they can also avail themselves, legally or illegally, of some eighty different welfare programs offered here.
And of course they provide cheap labor (the average Hispanic immigrant has only the equivalent of a grade-school education). They then share this income with their extended family members in Mexico. (The same is true for the Central American countries. For instance, fully 40 percent of the Guatemalan national income is provided by U.S. dollars remitted to family members at home by Guatemalans in the U.S.)
Joining this curious coalition, and serving as its moral voice, comes the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Yes, Wanderer readers are aware of the agonizing silence of our prelates regarding the moral issues that threaten our society today — the breakdown of the family, the celebration of sodomy, contraception, abortion, and adultery — not to mention the exodus of tens of millions of Catholics from the pews after Vatican II. But for the bishops, amnesty is paramount.
The bishops largely ignore the nation’s moral crisis, but they have also kicked the can down the road regarding critical internal challenges as well.
There is a crisis of law: as we learned from the Seitz Syndrome, many bishops nationwide refuse to enforce canon law regarding the pro-abortion Catholic politicians in their own dioceses. There is a crisis of finance: Since Vatican II, and especially since the bishops’ abuse-and-coverup scandals, donations from the people in the pews have plummeted; hence, the bishops have turned to those same pro-abortion politicians for billions in federal taxpayer funding.
And there is a crisis of the laity: Many bishops have simply abandoned teaching magisterial truths and have declared that they will pursue the goal of “social justice” instead.
Perhaps this explains why the bishops have made amnesty for illegal aliens their highest priority. For several years now they have effectively encouraged millions of illegals to break the law — for instance, the Seventh Commandment forbids the stealing of identification and Social Security numbers, and the Eighth Commandment forbids lying to qualify for welfare benefits and work permits, but one searches in vain for a bishop who will publicly condemn such objective evils. Well, why should he? If the bishops are willing to ignore Church law (canon 915), why not wink at illegals breaking civil, criminal, and divine law as well?
Unfortunately, if they persist, the bishops’ collision with reality will arrive when a future government decides to follow Obama’s unconstitutional model on DACA by promulgating an illegal executive order limiting or even destroying the Church’s religious liberty.
At that point, the bishops will have no grounds for appeal.
The bishops’ support for amnesty also reflects the crisis of finance: Many dioceses now rely heavily on federal aid to their countless welfare agencies caring for illegal aliens, legal immigrants, and refugees. Beyond DACA, the president’s proposed budget radically reforms federal agencies that supply hundreds of millions of dollars to the bishops’ welfare agencies — agencies which are designed to serve the poor and marginalized, but which are prohibited by federal law even to mention Jesus, much less to cheerfully and joyfully proclaim the Gospel to all. That funding could plummet as well.
While the legal and financial crises are pressing at the moment, perhaps the bishops’ most fundamental crisis concerns their responsibility to the laity. For more than two generations, as then-USCCB President Timothy Cardinal Dolan admitted five years ago, the bishops (with a few happy exceptions) have simply stopped teaching vital magisterial truths. Faithful stalwarts among the laity have done their best to fill in the vacuum, but with each passing year that the bishops are silent, they are condemning future generations to an ignorance of the faith that threatens the loss of untold millions of souls.
It’s time for the bishops to face facts. DACA is rescinded. Cardinal Dolan admits that the faithful are hungry for the truth. Reflecting on the words of our Lord, let us prayerfully urge them: “Feed my sheep!”

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