It’s funny how everyone always thinks freedom is such a great thing — until somebody exercises it in a way that doesn’t please certain people.
They will laud its virtues at various patriotic events while waving the flag and honoring those who have died to preserve our liberties — but all that can change when freedom actually plays out in the real world.
A recent example of this concerns the freedom of speech, as exercised by one Donald Trump, the business mogul/television personality/presidential candidate who recently had the unmitigated audacity to comment about the illegal immigrant problem.
Trump basically targeted those from Mexico, saying they import crime and drugs. He said the illegals coming here are not the cream of the crop, but folks who have all kinds of social and other problems that subsequently become burdens on the United States.
Now, Trump perhaps could have minced his words a little to sound less like he was condemning an entire group of people. Because similar to any other nation or ethnic class, Mexicans include many fine folks, but just like everyone else there are the inevitable bad apples in the bunch.
Trump later qualified his original statements by offering follow-up comments to that effect, but by then the damage already had been done.
But what should bother people more than anything he said or didn’t say was the way the thought police — the politically-correct-flavor-of-the-month machinery — rapidly mobilized to condemn the man. Macy’s department store dropped the product line of one of Trump’s business enterprises and a TV network decided not to telecast the Miss USA pageant, with which he is involved.
It was almost as if Donald Trump was the one breaking the law.
Though I don’t know that I ever would vote for Mr. Trump, it is disturbing to me that we have so many people in this country who are eager to lambaste someone for exercising his freedom of speech.
Essentially what we had was a mass mobilization in support of millions of immigrants who are breaking the law, plain and simple. And the only thing Donald Trump was guilty of was speaking publicly about what many U.S. citizens consider the truth about immigration.
Yet that flavor-of-the-month machinery — ironically made of up people who are supposed to be tolerant — have become so deft at propaganda and brainwashing of Americans that many who share Trump’s opinions aren’t comfortable voicing them.
Of course, there are a lot of good Mexican people who just want a better life, but the problem is that their lack of documentation prevents us from separating the good from the bad, such as Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez.
Not long after Trump made his comments about Mexicans — as if on cue— Lopez-Sanchez murdered a 32-year-old woman in San Francisco during a random shooting. The killer was discovered to be not only an undocumented immigrant, but a repeat felon who had been deported five times to Mexico.
One factor with that is San Francisco’s presence as a sanctuary city for illegals.
To those who say our immigration system is broken, well, that is a perfect example of why — because someone such as Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez should never have been in this country in the first place.
And for the propagandists who are so fond of saying that America was built by immigrants, those are not the kind our Founders had in mind.
Meanwhile, as to the idea that illegals are taking jobs Americans won’t, have you seen a construction crew lately? Sure, we can’t deport 20 million people — but subjecting those who hire them to stiff fines and jail terms would allow self-deportation.
Supporters who would say these folks are adding to American life need to consider the drain they are causing to our public education, health care, social services and law enforcement networks, as pointed out by Donald Trump. It is obvious that along with the hardworking ones, there are many others who simply want to take advantage of our lax controls over those institutions.
There are reasons why countries have borders and seek to ensure their sovereignty — including Mexico, where not having documentation is a felony. One of those reasons is to make sure the government has the resources to properly care for its own citizens, which has become hard enough for a nation that’s $18 trillion in debt.
The U.S. should start acting like a country instead of a no-questions-asked dumping ground for the world’s masses.
Tom Joyce is a staff writer for The Mount Airy News. He may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.