CHRIS POWELL: Under Biden, open borders come ahead of public health

Published on Friday, 1 October 2021 21:45

While President Biden, Governor Lamont, and their administrations cajole and coerce people to get vaccinated against the virus epidemic despite fears that the vaccines are really still experimental, the president's administration has just admitted to the country about 12,000 Haitians without documentation of vaccination and without virus testing.

U.S. citizens are finding that they need "vaccine passports" within their own country, but no such requirement is being made of foreigners crossing the southern border, either illegally or claiming refugee status.

Why has this been happening?

First, of course, it's because the Haitians who flash-mobbed the highway bridge in Del Rio, Texas, and other irregular border crossers have been confident that the Biden administration will not enforce immigration law. They have been proven correct.

Second, it has been happening because the Democratic Party, which now controls the federal government, can't face down its far-left faction, which favors open borders as moral principle, even now that having open borders means disregarding a more recent moral principle of the left – vaccination coercion. That far-left faction long has ruled the party in Connecticut and so Connecticut has become a "sanctuary state," obstructing enforcement of immigration law and facilitating illegal immigration by awarding driver's licenses, other identification, and some public benefits to lawbreakers.

In politics nationally and in Connecticut, the desire for open borders now trumps public health.

What should be done about the Haitians and Haiti? Any solution starts with recognizing the country's history.

It is widely understood that Haiti long has been a disaster, recently because of earthquakes and hurricanes but, more profoundly, because of decades – centuries, really – of political instability and imperialism, first the imperialism of France, then Germany, and then the United States. From 1915 to 1934 the United States occupied and ran Haiti as brutally as any other imperial power might have done. Since the Marines departed, Haiti seldom has been capable of more than military coups, assassinations, and dictatorship.

In recent years the placement in Haiti of a United Nations peacekeeping force also has failed to achieve political stability. The country is desperately poor, uneducated, malnourished, denuded, covered in earthquake rubble, gang- and crime-ridden, and, where there is ordinary politics, corrupt.

So it's no wonder that so many Haitians try to get out. But 11 million people remain there. Even sanctuary-crazed New Haven wouldn't welcome them all, and no other country wants to take in many more destitute people.

The most obvious solution might be a comprehensive intervention under the United Nations with a much larger force of soldiers and technicians and a 30-year charter to remake the country from scratch and brook no interference, though local advisory councils might be organized. This might be brutal sometimes but less brutal than the present. With a country as small as Haiti, couldn't a determined effort by the developed world maintain public safety; build medical, educational, electrical, water, sanitation, and judicial systems; facilitate agriculture; prevent starvation; and nurture self-sufficiency?

But since the record of intervention in Haiti is so miserable and the commitment of the developed world so unreliable, maybe something new should be tried with Haiti – that is, leaving the country alone with its misery, forcing Haitians to deal with it themselves and with whatever help international aid groups want to provide on the slim chance of making a difference.

While the latter option may sound horrible, the developed world is tolerating many human disasters as bad as Haiti's or nearly so: China's persecution and genocide of the Uyghur people in the northwest part of the country, the Myanmar military junta's persecution and genocide of the Rohingya Muslims and its murderous suppression of advocates of democracy; the civil wars in Yemen and Ethiopia; and, of course, the oppression being imposed on Afghanistan by the new Taliban regime.

The catastrophic and humiliating failure of 20 years of "nation building" by the United States in Afghanistan argues strongly for leaving all these disasters alone, at least until they break the firewalls of national borders.

Chris Powell is a columnist for the Journal Inquirer in Manchester.

Posted in The Bristol Press, Column on Friday, 1 October 2021 21:45. Updated: Friday, 1 October 2021 21:47.