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What exactly is misplaced compassion?

Date published: 6/26/2014

It never ceases to amaze me that some continue to argue that immigration reform would eliminate all restrictions on immigration, as one letter-writer stated ["Immigration reform will diminish the U.S.", June 23].

No credible "crowd" defends an "open border" approach. Yet no reasonable voice contending for immigration reform--reform that would lift our country economically and prove our country's moral foundations--demands immigrants get a free pass, but rather recognizes that successful reform requires taking responsibility for past actions and meeting demanding requirements for legal residency.

But I must ask, what is "misplaced compassion"? That only some people deserve our compassion? On what basis? Where they were born? What they look like? How old or young they are? Because they broke a law?

As a Christian believer, and from my reading of Jesus' teachings--such as the well-known Good Samaritan account (Luke 10:25-37)--I find no justifiable reason to leave anyone by the side of the road--or at the edge of a national border--and watch him die because our sense of right or wrong has been offended.

"Misplaced compassion" is a complete contradiction in terms. Parents don't send young children trekking thousands of miles from Central America through Mexico as if it were some Disneyland ride.

No child or adult braves the risk of abuse, robbery, rape and death on a whim.

I agree the "rule of law" is essential to any country's future. But if we believe some law more important than responding compassionately to hurting children, then we prove that law to be fundamentally immoral, or at least our reading of that law to be fundamentally flawed.

Nothing will cause our country to plummet to "the bottom tier" more than closing our hands to those who look to us as their only hope to live.

Greg Smith