WASHINGTON, D.C.—Well, this is embarrassing: Congress accidentally just banned the federal government.
The major faux pas came during a push for more legislation against guns and the deranged people who wield them to commit acts of terror. After some bipartisan bickering and tacking billions of dollars of pork onto the proposed legislation, lawmakers virtuously passed a bill that outlaws violent gun-wielding groups.
Though the legislation was intended to target fringe groups that use firearms to commit acts of violence, such as gangs, far-right nationalist groups, and terrorists, it was worded too vaguely and accidentally banned the entire federal government. The law specifically named “groups that use violence and wield guns to steal money and property, threaten people, and kill innocent civilians in a callous, egregious manner.” Instantly, the federal government became an outlaw.
“We just meant, like, regular, on-the-street criminals,” said one congressman sheepishly. “Not, like, official, elected criminals.”
Congress appealed to the courts and thankfully, a judge who was chosen by the federal government and whose paycheck comes from the federal government ruled that the federal government was exempt from the law.
“That was a close one,” said one politician. “Next time we’ll be more careful to specify which types of violence are OK.”
How do you insist that states enforce immigration laws, without insisting that they enforce marijuana laws? From James Howard Kunstler at kunstler.com:
The sanctuary city movement, and all its baggage, terminates in one troublesome idea: that the USA should have open borders and that anyone from a foreign land who manages to get here by whatever means is home-free-all. The most recent Democratic nominee for president said just the other day that she dreamed of open borders. The much-abused word dream has been at the center of our discourse about immigration, a purposefully sentimental manipulation of language for a culture struggling to ascertain the boundaries of reality in an era of universal wishful thinking.
Anyone who listens to National Public Radio, for instance, may notice the care they take to keep the boundary as fuzzy as possible vis-à-vis the status of people here from other lands. “Undocumented” has been the favorite trope, a dodge that implies that the people in question are victims of a clerical error — someone over in the Document Division forgot to hand them the right paperwork. Or else, all they are simply labeled “immigrants,” leaving out the question of whether they are in the country legally or not. Do not suppose it is mere sloppiness.
Lately, there is the matter of census-takers asking the people they interview — theoretically everybody who resides in the US — whether they are citizens or not. It would seem to be within the legitimate interests of demographic statisticians to ask that question, but it has ignited a firestorm of opposition. All manner of casuistry has been applied by that opposition to rationalize why we wouldn’t want to know whether people here are citizens or not. It all seems to come down to a cynical political calculation that the voter rolls can be eventually padded in favor of the Democratic Party (of which I remain an unhappy registered member, in order to vote in the New York state primary election).
The sanctuary city movement seems to me the most mendacious element of the story, a nakedly emotional appeal against the rule of law. The attorney general of California, Xavier Becerra, lately threatened to fine corporations there that share employee information with federal agents. There has not been such arrant flouting of federal law by state officials since Governor George Wallace stood in the doorway of the University of Alabama crying “segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever” in June, 1963 — and we all know how that ended.
To continue reading: Another Mighty Conundrum