The Corner

A Double Standard?

Jonah, I understand what your correspondent is trying to say with his pot analogy. It’s a clever debating point, but I don’t think that it works, not least because it sidesteps the underlying issue, which is whether the proposed change in the law is (or is not) a good idea. I can’t speak for Ramesh, but I oppose marijuana prohibition on both practical (it’s counterproductive, destructive and hugely expensive) and ideological (it’s none of the government’s business) grounds. By contrast, I don’t believe that America’s current fairly generous immigration laws (from which, it has to be said when discussing this topic, I have benefited myself) ought to be particularly difficult to police, given the necessary political will. Unlike pot prohibition it is not (in my view) a ‘bad’ law. That’s not to say that everything is now perfect (in some areas current US immigration rules are too harsh, in others far too permissive), but the changes proposed by Bush (taken as a whole) will manage to make a complex situation a great deal worse. Thanks for nothing, Mr. President.