Thursday, October 28, 2010

The stranger who sojourns among you

Benedict XVI, in a message prepared for the "World Day of Migrants and Refugees":
.... John Paul II, on the occasion of this same Day celebrated in 2001, emphasized that "[the universal common good] includes the whole family of peoples, beyond every nationalistic egoism. The right to emigrate must be considered in this context. The Church recognizes this right in every human person, in its dual aspect of the possibility to leave one's country and the possibility to enter another country to look for better conditions of life" .... At the same time, States have the right to regulate migration flows and to defend their own frontiers, always guaranteeing the respect due to the dignity of each and every human person. Immigrants, moreover, have the duty to integrate into the host Country, respecting its laws and its national identity. "The challenge is to combine the welcome due to every human being, especially when in need, with a reckoning of what is necessary for both the local inhabitants and the new arrivals to live a dignified and peaceful life." .... [more]
I'm sure there are those who are simply anti-immigration, and within that group, those who oppose immigration for bigoted and racist reasons. I'm not acquainted with people who make those kinds of arguments. I do know a lot of people who think the borders should be secure and that those who immigrate should do so legally. It seems to me that Benedict gets the balance exactly right.

Thanks to Molly Hemingway for the reference.

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