The immigration debate is complex with few, if any, ‘right’ answers of how to both be pragmatic regarding the costs associated with illegal immigrants and compassionate with regards to the human element involved .The issue lies squarely within the responsibility of the Federal government because individual states and local communities do not have the capability on their own. . Many have, however, attempted to deny access to housing, schools, medical treatment and social programs to non-citizens. . Some argue that U.S. laws apply to all within its borders, legally or not such as the Fifth Amendment right to due process of law. . The laws certainly apply to all when they are broken. The federal government, to no one’s surprise, has been no help. For example, the Bush administration has long supported some form of amnesty which has enraged those that are opposed to illegal aliens living, working or going to school in the U.S. On the other hand, the administration also endorses the PATRIOT Act which denies constitutionally guaranteed rights to all people and further punishes immigrants in the effort to win the ‘war on terror.’ The ‘right’ answer escapes the government and many others as well because of the issue’s many complexities. .
While on a recent visit to Arizona, President Bush tried to explain his position on immigration. “Nobody should be given automatic citizenship. That’s called amnesty.” Bush’s vision of a ‘path to citizenship’ has been characterized by some as too stringent a requirement for hard-working families who only desire to become citizens by some and pure amnesty, a free pass by others. White House Press Secretary Tony Snow explained illegal aliens allowed to stay under the president’s plan will pay fines and back-taxes, avoid criminal activities and maintain continuous employment. They must remain current with payments of current and future taxes and carry a tamper-proof identification. .