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January 22, 2018 · OPINION

Immigrants must accept the U.S. Constitution

By John Green

Our Constitution reads “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” That’s pretty clear. But what if the practices of a religion violate the Constitution?

When the Mormon church was established, some of their members practiced polygamy, having two or more spouses at the same time. This practice was in violation of our laws, our Constitution. The Mormon practice had to stop. The Constitution prevailed.

Islam is a religion, but it is also much more. It is a form of government with its own Islamic laws, both civil and religious. The Islamic laws are called the Shariah, covering all aspects of life – civil and religious.

The government of Iran is called the Islamic Republic of Iran and it is a theocracy run by mullahs – religious leaders. The Islamic State of Afghanistan and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan are ruled jointly by religious leaders and secular authorities. They use Shariah law.

The Islamic law, Shariah conflicts with the United States Constitution in several areas involving all aspects of life. If Muslims want to live in the United States they, like everybody else, must abide by the United States Constitution.

We cannot survive as a nation if we allow different groups to live under their own laws. That’s not questionable, that’s just common sense.

Americans have always been a generous people. Our country has grown and been successful by assimilating people from all over the world. They became Americas and live under our Constitution. That must continue. And, no, we don’t change the Constitution to make exceptions.
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citizen observer · January 24, 2018 at 12:47 pm
No communities have been allowed to implement sharia law. Many states have already passed legislation against any religion implementing harmful actions against women and gays. They don't name any particular religion, but in Texas Muslims were at the forefront.

I had several friends go to Detroit for a weekend of Tigers baseball games. While there they went to Dearborn. They said it was not a comfortable place to be, but not unlike rough, gang-run neighborhoods in many cities.

As far as DACA: Federal immigration and naturalization law contains a categorical bar that prevents, in most circumstances, a person from applying for permanent residency or citizenship if their most recent entry to the United States was “uninspected”: that is, other than at a port of entry where they were inspected by a border control officer.  Most DACA recipients fall into this category. However, they can overcome it but it is tedious and there are no guarantees.

Advance parole is way for certain immigrants to get advance authorization to depart and return to the United States. If a DACA recipient leaves the United States without advance parole, the individual will likely be disqualified from DACA and refused re-entry to the U.S. A DACA recipient can apply for advance parole using Form I-131, Application for Travel Document. However, advance parole for DACA is only be granted for humanitarian, educational, or employment reasons. Read more in Traveling Abroad with Advance Parole for DACA.

By using advance parole, a DACA recipient may travel abroad and return to the U.S. When the advance parole traveler returns, he or she is “paroled” into the U.S. This is considered a lawful entry.

The lawful entry is an essential requirement to adjust status to a permanent resident and apply for citizenship. There was just an article on a young woman who did just that and went through the process to become a citizen.

The bottom line is no country in the world caters to illegal immigrants as we are doing. They simply need to follow our laws to enter this great country, like those from so many nations have done to make this a great place. It is a slap in the face to all those that undertook the due process to citizenship; if we just grant the 800,000 who came in illegally citizenship.
Jim Griffin · January 24, 2018 at 11:59 am
I believe there exist paths to citizenship for dreamers, but it seems to me their options are few.

There was a time a dreamer could serve in the US military and receive citizenship upon successful completion of service, risking their lives for ours, though I think this is temporarily or permanently suspended and I think it's a shame this historical path is now closed. Even Trump says he thinks it is a good path.

I suspect it is still true they could attain citizenship through marriage to a US citizen. Congress sometimes makes people citizens by name -- IIRC, this happens for athletes, celebrities, happened to Elian Gonzalez, for example.

I do not know from experience or teaching and am delighted to receive correction on this.
Demosthenes · January 23, 2018 at 9:51 pm

As JG has pointed out, people are free to follow whatever moral code they prefer to follow, as long as it doesn't go against our laws. If you are going to say that there are neighborhoods where shariah law is now above our law then prove it...where are those neighborhoods? What is your source?

As for the said that some have gone through the path to citizenship, while others haven't. Please explain how that is possible as current law does not provide any path for any dreamer to become a citizen.
BJ · January 23, 2018 at 9:23 pm
CO - Agree that if you haven't tried to get citizenship then they need to go DACA (Democrats), and those on Temporary Protection Status (17 years??) for Salvadorans (Republicans) need to go, along with all the other Green Card holders who haven't gotten their citizenship (Irish, Polish, etc.) There is plenty of blame for both parties. The United States isn't the greatest country on Earth anymore, check the statistics, but it's my country and I love it worts and all.
citizen observer · January 23, 2018 at 5:04 pm
JG, sounds like we are pretty much on the same page! Have a great day!
Jim Griffin · January 23, 2018 at 4:13 pm
As regards your last paragraph, co, that is my point: No one pretends any of these various religious "laws" supercede any of America's laws, which permit the practice of religion not in conflict with our laws.

I've no knowledge of anyone suggesting otherwise, Sharia, Catholic, Jewish or what have you.

I am against all illegal immigration and am specifically opposed to the immigration of drug cults, but freedom of association (gangs) is in our constitution. No I do not approve of violent gangs nor do I favor their immigration.

Republicans and Democrats alike realize ours is a nation of immigrants, many of whom vote when they attain citizenship, which I support. Indeed, there are limited opportunities for non-citizens to vote legally in certain jurisdictions, which is fine with me if that it the law in that jurisdiction.

To be clear, Sharia Law is fine with me for those who consent to its application, but only insofar as its practice does not violate US law. Same with other religious laws of various religions.
citizen observer · January 23, 2018 at 4:04 pm
Neither party supports Trump because he is exposing Congress for what they are.

Trump extended it to give Congress the time to do what's needed, immigration reform. No one is against immigration, letting those that want to come into the USA and better themselves and the country. Many of these DACA folks have been here for 10-15 years. Some have gone through the process to become vibrant citizens. How come they all haven't?

What people are against is illegal immigration, particularly by drug cults and gangs. I've seen pictures of them protesting by wearing flags of their home countries while burning ours. They should just go home if they can't follow our laws to citizenship.

Funny how Senators Schumer, Feinstein, Clinton, and Obama are all on news tapes demanding President Bush address illegal immigration for all the same reasons as Trump. They were cheered. What has changed in 10 years? Soros pocket money? Or perhaps that allowing illegals to vote will lead to the leftist dream of a one party communist nation? I don't know but something caused them to do a 180 on illegal (not legal) immigration.

As far as churches I have no idea what you are saying. US law is and should be above all religious law. Muslims have been attempting to supervent that with sharia law neighborhoods, including giving millions in campaign donations to a presidential candidate. I guess if we are going to allow sharia law in their neighborhoods, then catholic neighborhoods can enforce no divorces or abortions. It will open up a Pandoras Box of problems.
Jim Griffin · January 23, 2018 at 3:35 pm

Let's be clear: Republicans support DACA, so much so that the Senate leadership refuses to bring it up for a vote with knowledge that its passage will upset Trump's base.

Trump himself extended DACA applications through March. He did not end the program as you suggest he could've.

Personally, I am fine with the Republican Party abandoning immigrants. It simply further assures future election outcomes.

Everyone knows US law is the law in the US. Within those constraints only, they may practice their religion and beliefs as they see fit. Or are you suggesting the Catholic Church may not practice its rules regarding marriage and divorce, for example, because US law varies from their tighter interpretations?

Of course not. That would be nonsensical. Catholics may practice and rule within their church as they see fit, but only so long as it is not in violation of US law. Same with Muslims, Jews, and so on.
citizen observer · January 23, 2018 at 3:25 pm
The Constitution also puts the passing of new laws in the hands of Congress, not the President. If our Constitution is being mangled by the current administration; where was the outcry when the previous administration bypassed Congress and wrote and implemented DACA?

Putting illegal immigrants in front of citizens by shutting the government down for them, because of a never passed law, is shameful. Name one country in the world that does that. Go ahead, just one...
It sort of signifies that DACA= Democrats Against Constitutional America, is becoming correct.

Radical religion has always been a problem. Doubtful that burning people at the stake ever solved anything. And it wasn't too long ago that radical preachers initiated bombing abortion clinics. Fortunately many realized that violence wasn't solving anything and stopped it.

Muslim leaders need to start preaching that sharia law is not acceptable to many, and that is okay. Unfortunately many are siding with the radicals because of Mohammad's thoughts on infidels, and even using mosques around the world to hide weapon caches. Their violence needs to stop.
BJ · January 23, 2018 at 9:20 am
The Constitution also states, "insure domestic Tranquility", "promote the general Welfare". Our Constitution is being mangled by the current administration. It is radicalized religion that we have to be careful about, and that includes radicalized Christians.

Blaine Johnson
Jim Griffin · January 23, 2018 at 7:41 am
Two thoughts on this:

1. And vice versa: Immigrants and visitors were always intended to receive equal protection under our laws.

2. Nothing in the constitution prevents any person from following or subscribing to any moral code. Agreed, if it contradicts our laws, our laws prevail. Muslims are not the only people to have a code of personal conduct.

How soon we forget that Catholic JFK was declared a "Papist" who would follow the Pope instead of US law! Do Jewish admonitions about eating pork apply beyond those who attend synogogue? Of course not.

Basically, this comment about Muslims could apply to any set of religious proscriptions: Jewish, Muslim, Catholics, and so on. There is nothing special nor problematic about Muslims. America is a great melting pot.
Observer · January 23, 2018 at 6:48 am
Right on!
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