• Rank Amateur
    556
    Morality of Immigration/Borders

    P1: All human beings have equivalent moral value
    P2: All human beings have inherent rights, among them
    The right to life,
    The right to use their effort, and talents to maximize
    the value of their life as they define it, within the confines
    of natural law.
    P3. The opportunities, riches, and freedoms to maximize the value
    of one’s life are not evenly distributed around the world.
    P4. Political borders exist in the world
    P5. Most/Many political borders are established and maintained by power.
    P6. The purpose of boarders are to protect, and secure the government’s objectives
    they enclose. These can be generally morally goods, or evils, or all between

    Conclusion:

    Human beings of equal moral value should be free to move about the world to maximize
    The value of their lives, as they define it. This freedom should only be limited by the inherent
    conflicts of similar freedoms in others. The nature of a particular political border may or may
    not be a moral entity to the extent it is justly or unjustly resolving the issues of just conflicts of inherent human freedoms from the equivalent human beings it separates.
  • Hanover
    4k
    Human beings of equal moral value should be free to move about the world to maximize
    The value of their lives, as they define it. This freedom should only be limited by the inherent
    conflicts of similar freedoms in others. The nature of a particular political border may or may
    not be a moral entity to the extent it is justly or unjustly resolving the issues of just conflicts of inherent human freedoms from the equivalent human beings it separates.
    Rank Amateur

    Should someone be permitted to move into my house and sleep in my bed? As one of God's children of equal worth, why should my bed be reserved for me and they be required to sleep somewhere less comfortable? Should they then sleep in my bed, what right do I have then to kick them out and sleep there because I now am being deprived? It seems we have to establish somewhere some set of rules of who gets what, which means we need to start drawing boundaries around things and rules that govern who can cross those boundaries.

    Now take it a step further. If you concede that I have the right to the confines of my home and my neighbors theirs, then surely we are free to decide how to share the space between our lands that might be jointly owned. Maybe we will decide to build a park located between ten of our homes that will be shared equally among us and we might arrive at a democratic method for how our common park will be maintained. Does an outsider now have the right to invade our common space but not our home?
  • Rank Amateur
    556


    Thanks - that is the point I was trying to cover with:

    This freedom should only be limited by the inherent
    conflicts of similar freedoms in others
    Rank Amateur

    When moral rights are in conflict a judgement needs to be made. To your point:

    It seems we have to establish somewhere some set of rules of who gets what, which means we need to start drawing boundaries around things and rules that govern who can cross those boundaries.Hanover

    My point is that the rules themselves may or may not be moral depending on how justly or unjustly they resolve the conflict.
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    Should someone be permitted to move into my house and sleep in my bed?Hanover

    Would it matter how you obtained the bed?

    If you walked into some house with 15 of your favorite bikers and threw out the family that lived there, and then built a big fence around it, and made sure there were plenty of tough guys around in case anyone tried to enter. Is the bed morally yours now ?
  • Akanthinos
    1k
    Should someone be permitted to move into my house and sleep in my bed?Hanover

    Put it another way. If you could save someone's life, and the only thing you had to do for this would be to let them move into your house and permit them to sleep in your bed, what kind of fucking monster do you have to be to refuse???
  • Hanover
    4k
    And yet you don't go down to the homeless shelter and bring as many home as will fit. Fucking monster.
  • Akanthinos
    1k
    And yet you don't go down to the homeless shelter and bring as many home as will fit.Hanover

    Well, if they are at the shelter, then moving them into a slightly more comfortable spot isn't what's going to save their life.

    And you know this is a false equivalence, and it's fucking hypocritical.

    Also, aren't you Jewish? Don't you have a very vivid historical reason not to piss on the 1951 Refugee Act and the status of asylum seeker? Yeah... :worry:
  • Waya
    870
    Human beings of equal moral value should be free to move about the world to maximize the value of their lives, as they define it. This freedom should only be limited by the inherent conflicts of similar freedoms in others. The nature of a particular political border may or may
    not be a moral entity to the extent it is justly or unjustly resolving the issues of just conflicts of inherent human freedoms from the equivalent human beings it separates.
    Rank Amateur

    What makes them equal morally? By nature, we establish certain people to be superior to each other via status in material terms, so what causes the moral law to be different? What causes us to be considered equal?
    Supposing that we do indeed have freedom, what sets our boundaries? If a fellow human sets boundaries, does it count as an encroachment on the other's liberty?
    It seems as if boundaries must be set by an authority figure that freedom may be maximized for the individual. Perhaps as a necessary evil, but necessary nonetheless.
  • Hanover
    4k
    Well, if they are at the shelter, then moving them into a slightly more comfortable spot isn't what's going to save their life.

    And you know this is a false equivalence, and it's fucking hypocritical.
    Akanthinos

    The discussion was broad enough that it can be equivalent as you make it. In the context of Mexican immigration, it is equivalent. They are not refugees escaping torture or death in their homeland, but are looking for a more comfortable spot here in the US. That would make the analogy apt.

    And on the other side of this, the homeless you've decided to describe are those that are slightly uncomfortable and will only receive something slightly better if housed with you. There are, though, homeless who are in desperate need of help that could be provided by you and that could save their life, yet you don't do it.

    My point here isn't that you're a hypocrite for demanding that others offer aid to suffering immigrants while you allow similarly situated homeless people to suffer. Whether you're a hypocrite is irrelevant. What I challenge is the standard you imposed, which is that you claim it is highly immoral (i.e. you would be a "monster" for doing this) not to help all those in need who you could help. I don't accept that as a standard of morality because it requires an extreme altruism that is superhuman, not, as you suggest that those failing that degree of altruism are subhuman. I'm saying that it is moral to have more than an equal share of wealth and it is not required that you divide your fortunes, however humble, equally to those in need.

    This isn't to say that a certain degree of charity isn't morally required, and I'd say most consider giving of one's self a requirement of being a good person, but there are limitations in what is expected of us. One standard often used among the religious in Western society is that of tithing, where 10% of one's wealth is offered as charity. That number is arbitrary to be sure, and I don't suggest it is the specific number that must be adhered to, but it does make the point that the how much question has been a point of issue for thousands of years. That is, we can be moral (and not be monsters) by limiting a distribution of our community resources by not opening up our borders to all comers, but by offering our charity in a limited, but still generous way.
    Also, aren't you Jewish? Don't you have a very vivid historical reason not to piss on the 1951 Refugee Act and the status of asylum seeker? Yeah... :worry:Akanthinos

    This is an ad hom. If it is indeed hypocritical for me to reject immigrants today when my ancestors were immigrants (and that is a debatable hypothesis), then the best you could say is that I'm a hypocrite. Not wrong, just a hypocrite. This is just to point out that you're no longer debating, but just trying to be insulting.

    At any rate, this is just a red herring by you, considering the immigration debate in the US is not over the refugee population of immigrants. The typical US immigrant is Mexican or Chinese and very few US immigrants are truly fleeing their nation of origin for fear of torture or death. If the US closed its borders to all but those who qualified under the refugee convention (which the US didn't enter into until 1967 by the way), immigration would be effectively shut down. If your position is that immigration be limited to only those who qualify as refugees, then your approach is indeed very conservative, and not in opposition to walls, increased border patrols, and other measures to contain the non-refugee immigration attempts.
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    What makes them equal morally? By nature, we establish certain people to be superior to each other via status in material terms, so what causes the moral law to be different? What causes us to be considered equal?Lone Wolf

    Trying to defend that all human being are morally equal is like trying to defend that 2 + 2 = 4. However, that does not mean they are naturally equal, that they are different. Different concept.

    Supposing that we do indeed have freedom, what sets our boundaries? If a fellow human sets boundaries, does it count as an encroachment on the other's liberty?Lone Wolf

    Borders are arbitrary political lines, in the main acquired by and maintained by power. The issue I am asking is are these political lines moral, and my answer is, it is depended on their purpose and use.

    for example:

    A Honduran woman, with her 3 children are in real physical danger in their home, that they are innocent of the cause of. She packs up the kids, makes the trek through Mexico, crosses illegally into the US. They are captured and returned to the danger.

    Questions are:
    Who in the scenario has a higher moral purpose. A woman protecting her children, or a government protecting its border ?

    Is there a lesser of evil argument? Could the government defend its action to prevent others to do likewise ?

    It seems that on an individual basis, the actions of the government have lesser moral standing - can it be justified as a lesser evil than mass migration ?
  • tom
    1.5k
    Human beings of equal moral value should be free to move about the world to maximize
    The value of their lives, as they define it. This freedom should only be limited by the inherent
    conflicts of similar freedoms in others. The nature of a particular political border may or may
    not be a moral entity to the extent it is justly or unjustly resolving the issues of just conflicts of inherent human freedoms from the equivalent human beings it separates.
    Rank Amateur

    So, you support open borders for Israel?
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    So, you support open borders for Israel?tom

    as above, my support for the morality of any nations border is its purpose and use. If the purpose or use is moral, the border is moral.

    Not sure I understand all the issues on the Israel border to have an opinion based on subtleties. But in some degree of if a border exists to protect its inhabitants from real harm, the purpose becomes self defense, which is a morally acceptable action. This becomes more cloudy if the the people you are defending yourself from - have a moral claim to the land you are protecting.

    If I steal your car, can I claim self defense as a morally acceptable reason to stop you from trying to get it back. And can you use any means at all to get it back?
  • tom
    1.5k
    as above, my support for the morality of any nations border is its purpose and use. If the purpose or use is moral, the border is moral.Rank Amateur

    So Israel, killing 100 Gazan protesters and maiming 14,000 with butterfly bullets is OK.

    USA dealing with invaders lawfully is not.

    Go figure.
  • Bitter Crank
    6.7k
    P5. Most/Many political borders are established and maintained by power.
    P6. The purpose of boarders are to protect, and secure the government’s objectives
    they enclose. These can be generally morally goods, or evils, or all between
    Rank Amateur

    "Power" does not exist as an abstraction. It resides in or through something real. "The government" is not a paper abstraction. It was established and maintained through the will of real people (citizens) who recognized common interests among themselves (the nation). "The people" have the right to establish and maintain national borders, through their sovereign national state.

    A Honduran woman, with her 3 children are in real physical danger in their home, that they are innocent of the cause of. She packs up the kids, makes the trek through Mexico, crosses illegally into the US. They are captured and returned to the danger.Rank Amateur

    It's a long way from Honduras to Texas. Before she arrived here, she imposed herself and her children upon Guatemala and Mexico. If she just wanted to get away from some local shit hole, she need not have traveled so far. She was aiming higher -- the Good Life in the United States. It is one thing to relieve abject suffering, another thing to fulfill high aspirations.

    Most of the world's moving populations are economic migrants -- not refugees from tyranny. Economic migrants (of the sort that left Europe and re-populated North and South America over the objections of aboriginal populations), and millions of others today, can not make a claim of charity. They may arrive on this or that border disheveled, hungry, thirsty, chilled (or overheated), but their travel was not driven by the necessity of escaping persecution.
  • Bitter Crank
    6.7k
    Human beings of equal moral value should be free to move about the world to maximize the value of their lives, as they define it. This freedom should only be limited by the inherent conflicts of similar freedoms in others.Rank Amateur

    If this is so, then why don't the majority Buddhist Burmese people (Myanmar) have the right to discourage Moslem and Christen people from living there?

    If the United States wants to maintain a majority European-descended population, why don't we have the right to do that?

    If the Chinese Han people wish to discourage Moslems in their western provinces (and elsewhere), or Christian, why don't they have the right to do that?

    Maximizing the value of lives in Bangladesh might not include Rohynga Moslems from Myanmar. And so on.

    A world of "silos" closed to outsiders isn't my idea of a good arrangement, but neither is a world of fluid populations moving wherever they please.
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    It was established and maintained through the will of real people (citizens) who recognized common interests among themselves (the nation). "The people" have the right to establish and maintain national borders, through their sovereign national state.Bitter Crank

    the collective will of a people is no guarantee that the will is moral. That is a separate judgement.

    It's a long way from Honduras to Texas. Before she arrived here, she imposed herself and her children upon Guatemala and Mexico. If she just wanted to get away from some local shit hole, she need not have traveled so far. She was aiming higher -- the Good Life in the United States. It is one thing to relieve abject suffering, another thing to fulfill high aspirationsBitter Crank

    That is just changing the hypothetical I proposed without making the moral judgement on the scenario I gave you.

    They may arrive on this or that border disheveled, hungry, thirsty, chilled (or overheated), but their travel was not driven by the necessity of escaping persecution.Bitter Crank

    Ok, make it economic. Is it moral, for a people with great opportunities , to draw a line, and use force to prevent other human beings from having the same opportunities ? Does it matter if the latter took those opportunities by force ?
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    So Israel, killing 100 Gazan protesters and maiming 14,000 with butterfly bullets is OK.tom

    not exactly sure how you got that, from this

    as above, my support for the morality of any nations border is its purpose and use. If the purpose or use is moral, the border is moral.Rank Amateur
  • Bitter Crank
    6.7k
    the collective will of a people is no guarantee that the will is moral. That is a separate judgement.Rank Amateur

    True enough; nations may engage in actions which are not moral.

    In this discussion, I am asserting that the creation and maintenance of nations for the benefit of its citizens is a moral action. Secure borders are part of the maintenance required to sustain the national life. Why? Because persons with immoral intent (spies, terrorists, illicit drug wholesalers, criminals fleeing prosecution, etc.) seek to cross borders. We may also block persons at the border who pose a health risk (are infectious with readily communicable and dangerous diseases, like Ebola, tuberculosis, multi-drug resistant STIs, etc.).

    Limiting immigration (or emigration) may be necessary to protect the economy upon which a nation's people depend for their well-being. It may also be necessary to limit immigration of persons who have very limited ability to contribute productively to the economy of a nation (on which its people depend). For instance, persons who do not speak the language of the target nation or are illiterate, lack skills in modern technology, and so on may not be able to contribute to the economy in any significant way. There is a strong likelihood of a significant share becoming dependent on the people of the target nation. The same would apply to the seriously and chronically ill.

    That is just changing the hypothetical I proposed without making the moral judgement on the scenario I gave you.Rank Amateur

    The problem of emigration/immigration is a world-wide problem affecting many nations. Some nations have greater resources, some have far lesser resources. 500,000 people moving from Burma to Bangladesh is a much greater problem for Bangladesh than 500,000 Mexicans moving into the United States. Columbians are not in a good position to absorb large number of migrants from Venezuela. Too many migrants may destabilize Columbia, which is of no benefit to anyone, particularly Columbians.

    Ok, make it economic. Is it moral, for a people with great opportunities to draw a line, and use force to prevent other human beings from having the same opportunities? Does it matter if the latter took those opportunities by force ?Rank Amateur

    I would hold it not moral for one nation to seek the impoverishment of other nations for its own benefit. This has been the policy of various nations at various times, including the United States. Keeping other nations poor and backward (or unstable) may have a short term benefit, but can have very bad long-term consequences.

    Central American states have been subject to a great deal of economic and military interference by the United States. It would be more moral for us to effectively aid Central American nations to rehabilitate and expand their societies and economies, than to drain them of their most promising citizens. So far, we have done little.

    There are policies beyond open doors or impenetrable walls at the border.
  • Bitter Crank
    6.7k
    If the purpose or use is moral, the border is moral.Rank Amateur

    This simplistic formulation could be applied to railroads in Germany during the Nazi era. If a given rail line was used to deliver Jews to Auschwitz, was it an "immoral rail line"? Was the engine that pulled the train an "immoral engine"?

    A border is like a railroad: a construction that is essentially morally neutral. The right way to talk about Auschwitz is "policy". The Nazis established an immoral policy. It isn't the border that would be immoral; it is the policy for permissions to cross the border that would be subject to moral judgement.

    Most nations permit persons to cross through and permanently remain within their borders under specific conditions. What seems to me problematic is when people demand to be admitted without any conditions when they are not fleeing persecution (such as Jews fleeing Nazi Germany). The U.S. can be seriously faulted for being very stingy with our admission quotas at that time, even turning away a whole ship of refugees (the German ship St. Louis).
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    Secure borders are part of the maintenance required to sustain the national life. Why? Because persons with immoral intent (spies, terrorists, illicit drug wholesalers, criminals fleeing prosecution, etc.) seek to cross borders. We may also block persons at the border who pose a health risk (are infectious with readily communicable and dangerous diseases, like Ebola, tuberculosis, multi-drug resistant STIs, etc.).Bitter Crank

    Agree - lump it into a basket called safety and security - in the main would be a moral reason for a border.

    Limiting immigration (or emigration) may be necessary to protect the economy upon which a nation's people depend for their well-being. It may also be necessary to limit immigration of persons who have very limited ability to contribute productively to the economy of a nation (on which its people depend). For instance, persons who do not speak the language of the target nation or are illiterate, lack skills in modern technology, and so on may not be able to contribute to the economy in any significant way. There is a strong likelihood of a significant share becoming dependent on the people of the target nation. The same would apply to the seriously and chronically ill.Bitter Crank

    Not sure I agree with very much of this, and not sure how much of this conventional wisdom based on any kind of fact. To the contrary, I can't of any immigrant group that this was not said about, and in the fullness of time was not look on as an asset to the country. Not sure there is any basis to think the current wave is any different.
  • Rank Amateur
    556
    It isn't the border that would be immoral; it is the policy for permissions to cross the border that would be subject to moral judgement.Bitter Crank

    no issue with that. Agree. maybe a touch semantic - but agree.
  • Bitter Crank
    6.7k
    Not sure I agree with very much of this, and not sure how much of this conventional wisdom based on any kind of fact. To the contrary, I can't of any immigrant group that this was not said about, and in the fullness of time was not look on as an asset to the country. Not sure there is any basis to think the current wave is any different.Rank Amateur

    What is different is that we are witnessing this wave. We weren't around when Eastern Europeans arrived in New York City in 1897.

    True -- people are often less than thrilled with new arrivals. In the US, the Irish, Italians, eastern Europeans, and Russian/Ukrainian Jews were met with considerable disdain. On the other hand, NW Europeans (Germans, British, and Scandinavians) received a friendlier reception.

    What made for the difference?

    One factor was the physical condition of the immigrants. The Irish generally left their homeland in physical and emotional distress, an they arrived in very large numbers (think Irish famine). The cities where they landed (like Boston and New York) weren't large enough to absorb them immediately, and there were no welfare and settlement programs capable of taking care of them, so their misery was on public display. In time they moved up and out-- like my great grandfather who a young guy in Minnesota in 1863. But it took decades for the Irish to become integrated into New York 'polite society'.

    Italians and eastern Europeans immigrated in smaller numbers and weren't fleeing famine, and many of the Italian men, at least, did not intend to become permanent residents. Still, they were a new wave of immigration. Germans and British immigrants found well established communities here (since the pre-revolutionary war period). Jews arrived in large numbers, many fleeing persecution in Russia and Ukraine. The traditional dress of the often Orthodox Jews was noticeably different than what many other Americans were wearing, as were their political/food/religious/social habits. Whether migrants were from rural or urban cultures made a difference.

    It actually doesn't take that much cultural difference for people to react negatively.

    Minnesota now has a large population of Somalis. They arrived over a very short period of time as a result of State Department policy. Conservatively dressed Moslem women are still something of a novelty. People were more stunned than thrilled by their sudden arrival. None the less, they are integrating themselves. A Somali was elected to the Minneapolis City Council. The MN Historical Society has a Somali history show. They appear to be succeeding economically. Their mosques are rarely storefront operations now, but rather are more substantial religious buildings. It has taken... maybe 25-30 years. The Vietnamese community integrated very fast here, the Hmong people (Cambodians) much slower.

    Mexicans, Cambodians, central Americans, Somalis, et al have spread out over the state, pretty much the way the Norwegians and Swedish did in the 19th century. The revitalizing benefit of immigration is most visible in dying rural Minnesota towns, and in dilapidated parts of urban Minnesota.
  • Akanthinos
    1k
    USA dealing with invaders lawfully is not.tom

    Invaders? The hell are you on about.

    And no, this is not lawful, as the Governor of New York explained in details. Besides violating the stated intent of the Flores decision, it also contravenes to the 1951 Refugee Act, which states that while countries may impose mouvement restrictions on asylum seekers for the aim of facilitating process, they cannot criminalize them, prosecute them, or even simply discourage them from seeking asylum.

    Trump set himself up for another legal takedown.
  • gurugeorge
    517
    P1: All human beings have equivalent moral valueRank Amateur

    No, they don't, that's absolute nonsense. A gangbanger, for example, does not have equivalent moral value to a normal human being who does no harm.

    Perhaps you mean something like "spiritual value" or "value in the eyes of God" or something of that sort?
  • Rank Amateur
    556


    This what I was going for in P1.

    All humans have an equal basic moral status. They possess the same fundamental rights, and the comparable interests of each person should count the same in calculations that determine social policy. Neither supposed racial differences, nor skin color, sex, sexual orientation, ethnicity, intelligence, nor any other differences among humans negate their fundamental equal worth and dignity.
  • Bitter Crank
    6.7k
    Dummkopf!

    What you took as some sort of attempt at obfuscation was support for immigration. Yes, I am against open door immigration, but the point I was making was that once orderly admission has been gained, immigration generally benefits the destination countries. People initially resent new arrivals, but they get used to them, and eventually accept them.
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