Law and Order vs. Anarchy

They are not Illegal… but their actions are.

Unless you have been living off-grid in Antarctica for the last few years, it is safe to say you have heard about the immigration problems we are facing in this country. Now, for the sake of dialogue, I will take a neutral, middle-of-the-road perspective. Meaning, let us take all of the “build a wall” and “open borders” rhetoric and put it in our back pockets until we go into the streets to protest or flood social media with virtue-signaling memes. Bottom line, we need to look at this from a pure law-and-order point of reference.

8 U.S. Code Chapter 12 – Immigration and Nationality[1] details the laws of the land with regard to immigration; the last time I checked, Congress, not the President through executive fiat, creates bills that the President signs into law. Executive Orders notwithstanding, Congress makes the laws by which we live. Stay with me for a moment. Now, there are 535 voting members of Congress (435 Representatives and 100 Senators)[2], they represent the views and opinions of their respective constituents. What this means is that our laws, statistically speaking, reflect the will of the people as represented by the folks they voted into office – so long as they are constitutional. Currently, both the Executive and Legislative branches of government are Republican, which means they are currently leaning towards the right (conservative) versus left (progressive). Conservatism does not equate to Naziism, Fascism, or any other type of oligarchical “-ism”. It simply means our values are rooted in the constitution and the founding principles of our nation. The is key to understanding my argument.

So why is this important to understand and what does it have to do with immigration? Over the last year, there has been a great deal of political bruhaha concerning “illegal immigrants”, specifically the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)[3] program. Essentially, this is program wherein illegal immigrants can petition the government for U.S. Citizenship if they can prove they were brought here as a child, against their own volition, and have been actively contributing to the betterment of our society. It sounds reasonable, so why has this become such a politically polarized issue? There are two main reasons. Progressive Democrats sincerely believe “No Human Being is Illegal[4]”, and they also believe in quasi human-gerrymandering as it pertains to bolstering the demographics of their political constituency. In a nutshell, Progressive Democrats believe they can gain more power by manipulating the playing field with non-US Citizen voters. Plain and simple.

They accomplish this through an emotional appeal to the human spirit wherein they use highly euphemistic politically correct language to refer to illegal immigrants as “dreamers.” When we remove all emotional language from the verbiage, we are left with two words from which we can establish a fundamental basis for an argument: 1). Illegal, and 2). Immigrant.

  1. Illegal[5]: contrary to or forbidden by law; and
  2. Immigrant[6]: a person who comes to live permanently in a foreign country.

By definition alone, as taken from the Merriam-Webster dictionary, an illegal immigrant is a person who comes “illegally” to live permanently in a foreign country, such as the United States. Every country on the planet has strict rules as it relates to immigrants entering into their countries and becoming citizens. In fact, there are some countries that do not allow foreigners to become citizens, or they at least make it extremely difficult to be granted citizenship[7]. What this means, every sovereign nation has laws that delineate the process for emigrating from another country and “legally” immigrating into their respective “sovereign country”. I understand the “open borders” arguments wherein Progressive Democrats believe there should be no borders in the world and we should all live under the collective rule of a “One-World Government[8]”; however, even in that kind of communistic (read dystopian) global society, there would still be laws, statutes, rules, regulations, and procedures that would prevent complete and total anarchy, and there would still be classifications/categorizations of peoples in order to track human movement. In furtherance, one could argue that the mythical open borders dream would, in fact, be more restrictive in nature, or would simply fail once people begin to lose their national identities[9].

So now that we understand the actual definition of “illegal immigrant” and why it is important to have “laws” that prevent complete and utter anarchy, we can now discuss DACA.

While the merits of the DACA program can be argued in either direction, I am not interested in emotionally any appeal from the “left or the right”; I simply care about the current law and protecting the fundamental, constitutional architecture laid out by our founding fathers. Without their wisdom and foresight, we probably wouldn’t even be able to have this argument because we would probably be living under the control of a despotic regime that prohibits free speech and political discourse. Let that sink in for a minute. We enjoy our rights to complain about everything and petition for grievances under the law, yet the Progressive Left is continually trying to nullify the law in order to fit its political agenda. It is an obvious paradox of magnanimous self-contradictions to claim protection under the very constitution they are trying to usurp or nullify through the use of “social justice” snowflakes (*see ANTIFA[10]).

The point is, we are a nation of laws; ergo, non-U.S. citizens must apply for citizenship in accordance with our laws. There is nothing more to argue at this point. In furtherance, President Trump, nor any Congressman, has waffled on this issue as far as I am concerned. President Trump simply stated that Barack Obama’s rule by executive fiat[11] (2014 Executive Actions on Immigration[12]) was not within the “constitutional authority” of the Executive Branch and that Congress (the Legislative Branch) needed to pass legislation he could sign. I simply can see no viable argument, legal or emotional, to challenge the constitution or checks-and-balances structure of our government, in this regard.

Now, as a human being I can definitely understand the emotional appeal to not separate families, or send people back to a country with which they have no cultural or language ties, but that is an emotional argument. And, it is one with which I can empathize. Yes, empathize, not sympathize. Why? Because while serving my country in the military, I had to get visas for a myriad of countries in which I “worked” or “lived”. I understood the immigration laws and expectations of those nations, and I fully understood the consequences of violating those laws. So why should the United States be any different? If a law is broken, especially by a non-U.S. person, the individual should be subject to all punitive actions/measures within the confines of that specific law. When it comes to immigration, they should be deported back to their country of origin. This happens in other countries, so why can’t we enforce our own laws?

But that is not really the argument. The argument is what to do with minors born as U.S. citizens to immigrants who entered this country illegally, or minors that entered into this country illegally, with their parents, against their own volition. To that, I can simply revert back to my statement, “we are a nation of laws”, “the individual(s) should be subject to all punitive actions/measures within the confines of that specific law.” So, while I can agree, “no human being is illegal”, that does not negate the fact that their actions can be illegal, and they should be held accountable under the law.

However, I do see merit in offering, on a limited and case-by-case basis, an opportunity to have a pathway to obtain U.S. Citizenship. Of course, my support comes with stipulations.

  1. The individual must not have a criminal record of any kind;
  2. The individual must not have prior deportations;
  3. The individual must pay a fine for breaking the law;
  4. The individual must submit retrograded tax forms for the previous five (5) years and pay all back taxes owed;
  5. The individual must enter into military service, civil service, or conduct a minimum of 1500 hours of community service over a five-year period.

So how would this solve the problem with illegal immigrant minors? Easy, the aforementioned stipulations apply to the parents of the minors. As the minors came here against their own volition, the parents should be subject to the punitive actions/measures outlined above. If the parents cannot, or will not, adhere to these stipulations, then my humanity ends there. Follow the law, and deport them back to their countries of origin. There is no argument to be had.

But, that is not for the average citizen to decide; it is not even for the President to decide, immigration law is the responsibility of Congress, and they, as dully representatives of their constituents, bear the sole responsibility of fixing this problem. President Trump made a wise decision to operate within his Constitutional authority and not operate through executive fiat like former U.S. Presidents[13].

As for whether or not a person can be, “illegal”. No, they cannot. But when they break the law, no matter how minor or slight, they have committed a crime, which makes them a criminal in the eyes of the court. We are not saying “illegal immigrants” do not have the same inalienable rights as everyone else, we are simply saying that the U.S. Constitution applies to U.S. Citizens, so, if an immigrant does not have the proper documentation to be in this country, the U.S. Constitution does not apply to them. They need to return to their country and institute constitutional changes within their own government. Or, if that is too difficult, they can at least apply for U.S. Citizenship just like every other law-abiding immigrant. But they cannot break into our country and expect not to be treated like a criminal that broke the law. If that is the case, it would set a slippery slope in terms of precedence with regard to other criminals not wanting to be held accountable for breaking other U.S. laws, codes, or statutes.

I will end this with two salient points. 1). Congress, you have been weighed and measured, and you have been found wanting. Please do the job for which you were elected. 2). For all of the fair-weather MAGA supporters out there, we need “winter soldiers”, not “sunshine patriots”. Either support the rule of law or get out of the way for the constitutional conservatives that do not want to live under the reign of an oligarchical plutocracy.

For all that know me, I love my country and I am generally very understanding from a classic liberal perspective when it comes to any issue, which is why I understand the need for law-and-order if we are to maintain a society – and hopefully our national identity as well. Bottom line, if we cannot enforce the laws of our nation, then what is the point of being a free people or even having sovereignty for that matter?


[1] 8 U.S. Code Chapter 12 – IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[2] United States Congress. (2017, September 12). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[3] Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[4] Haque-Hausrath, S. (n.d.). No Human Being is Illegal. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[5] Illegal. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[6] Immigrant. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[7] Countries that Do Not Allow Citizenship. (n.d.) Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[8] One world government. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[9] Hanson, V. D. (2016, July 31). Why borders matter — and a borderless world is a fantasy. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[10] Beinart, P. (2017, August 06). The Rise of the Violent Left. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[11] Masters, J. (2016, June 23). The U.S. Supreme Court and Obama’s Immigration Actions. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[12] 2014 Executive Actions on Immigration. (n.d.). Retrieved September 18, 2017, from

[13] Slattery, E. (2014, February 12). An Executive Unbound: The Obama Administration’s Unilateral Actions. Retrieved September 18, 2017, from



  1. notbynd says:

    A well-reasoned essay. Also irrelevant. There was a big storm in Omaha a couple months back. Up and down my street people are having new roofs put on their houses and new siding too. Very, very hard working, brown-skinned, Spanish-speaking men are performing back-breaking, hot, dangerous work daily to keep houses in repair.

    Mr. Lively or whoever you are, I hope you and your fellow value-free, legal sharks, without a blister or callus to your name, join me in ejecting these individuals from America and replacing them at their jobs. I am sure we can do a better job cheaper while living in the manner we have become accustomed to.

    Until then, I’ll take one of “them” in place of any number of “you” any day of the week. Be grateful, Mr. Lively, that somebody pays you for whatever it is you do for a living. You are certainly getting the better end of that deal, footnotes and all.

    • Barb E. Dahl says:

      You say “irrelevant” because???
      Because you don’t like the ‘rule of law?’ Because you needed your roof repaired as cheaply as possible? Or maybe because you can’t think and express yourself as well as Joshua Lively?

      Nobody is denying that ‘brown-skinned’ people are hard-working. (Well, The Donald denies it; he says they are rapists.) Nobody is denying that they are pitiable, within their illegal status. (Well, The Donald does, saying they are selling drugs.) And nobody is as bigoted as The Donald. (Well, I guess you’re accusing those who wish to enforce the ‘rule of law’ of bigotry.)
      Do you want to re-think your notion of relevancy?

  2. Chad Hova says:

    Tried to read this, but could only make it about a third of the way through. Didn’t realize this was going to be an audition for Breitbart. Good luck with the tryout, buddy!

    • Joshua Lively says:

      Chad… no sir. I live down in Bellevue, and Breitbart couldn’t afford me. I do this pro bono because I love my country and the State of Nebraska! I will shorten the posts. Admittedly, I was a bit overzealous.

      • The Grundle King says:

        The only suggestion I would offer is that you temper yourself. Four (long) articles in such short order is a breakneck pace, and while others may take issue with your verbosity, I appreciate the amount of time, thought, and effort you put into your articles, and would hate to see you burn out. Ask Sweeper how tough it can be to come up with one article a week.

    • anon says:

      We were.. until Trump, Sessions and Bannon rolled into town.
      Few (sane people) will even argue over the fact that Trump’s is the most lawless and ethics-averse presidency in modern history. The objective evidence is simply overwhelming.

      Sept 26 –
      WASHINGTON — The acting head of the Drug Enforcement Administration is resigning, he said in an email Tuesday, a few weeks after he complained that President Donald Trump appeared to have “condoned police misconduct.”

      Law enforcement officials are quoted as saying Rosenberg has become convinced that Trump “had little respect for the law.”

      Chuck Rosenberg was twice appointed US Attorney by G.W. Bush, first in southern Texas, second in eastern Virginia (unanimous confirmation).

  3. Anonymous says:

    Speaking of stupid, how’s the air down there around my ass?

    Progressives get on their knees for two reasons. Firstly, to show solidarity with poor NFL players whose average salary is $1.9 mil/yr. (Thank goodness our taxpayers subsidize billions to build and maintain NFL stadiums.)

    Secondly, Progressives also get on their knees under a desk. They do that too on principle.

    God bless your brainless principles. For anyone dumb enough to believe in sharing wealth nobody has to earn, sovereignty without borders, and pitying a NFL full of millionaires, such noble kneelers should find much happiness doing a “Monica”.

    Do I hear an Amen? Sure, if you pull out your dentures. Do that and I will get you 5 bucks and a ham sandwich, the Omaha Dem GOTV dumper diver deal you use to get your electorate to the polls.

  4. bynd says:

    It is telling that the progressives will fight for the illegals to stay here and be abused by the capitalistic system, and then not realize or care, they are supporting a form of slavery instead of fighting to change the laws that would have them here contributing legally.

    But I guess well paying slavery, a relative concept, is as good a reason as any to advocate breaking the law.

    But the writers point was confirmed when the first response was, using his own words from another post, “All we’re left with is “Go Fuck Yourself.”

  5. Elmo says:

    Thank god Street Sweeper and his fairly well-written posts containing relevant information regarding Nebraska politics has been replaced by Jonathan Lively’s stream of tedious polemics that quote the Merriam-Webster Dictionary a la a poorly written freshman composition paper.

    • Elmo says:

      This is a bit mean, I apologize. I just skimmed your first post and kind of liked it. You need an editor, friend. Or, better yet, pick up a copy of The Elements of Style by Strunk and White. It’s a slim volume and studying it will markedly improve your writing.

      • Elmo says:

        To keep harping… I just quickly edited your first paragraph. What you said in 102 words, I was able to say in 45, without losing any important information. I have a feeling a lot of your paragraphs could be trimmed even more drastically.

        Short and sweet: “I’d like to discuss the immigration problems we are facing in this country. For the sake of dialog, I’m going to approach this rather heated subject from a neutral perspective, with U.S. immigration laws as they currently exist as my primary point of reference.”

        Long and tedious: “Unless you have been living off-grid in Antarctica for the last few years, it is safe to say you have heard about the immigration problems we are facing in this country. Now, for the sake of dialogue, I will take a neutral, middle-of-the-road perspective. Meaning, let us take all of the “build a wall” and “open borders” rhetoric and put it in our back pockets until we go into the streets to protest or flood social media with virtue-signaling memes. Bottom line, we need to look at this from a pure law-and-order point of reference.”

      • Elmo says:

        I have none, Barb E. Dahl, you schmuck, which is why I am (was?) an occasional reader of this blog… it provided me with useful information I didn’t have access to otherwise. See also: Zzzzzzzzzzzz…’s post below.

  6. Zzzzzzzzzzzz... says:

    This blog used to be a hotbed of insider information. People would come here and read the comments to find out things like why Joni Craighead isn’t running for reelection, or whether it’s true that Kris Pierce was really on the Ashley Madison list. Now it’s just anothet mindless partisan diatribe-machine.

  7. Let me fix that for ya says:

    “Progressive Democrats believe they can gain more power by manipulating the playing field with non-US Citizen voters. Plain and simple simpleton.”

    ‘non-US citizen voters’
    Tin foil cap, a tad too tight?
    (then of course, there is that non-US Citizen outreach by your president, to the Russians..)

    You go on to opine –
    “I am not interested in emotionally any appeal from the “left or the right”; I simply care about the current law and protecting the fundamental, constitutional architecture laid out by our founding fathers. ”

    I give you a most famous founding father, Benjamin Franklin, and a quote from his 1751 essay, Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind, Peopling of Countries, etc.,:
    “..why should the Palatine Boors (Germans) be suffered to swarm into our settlements, and by herding together establish their languages and manners to the exclusion of ours? Why should Pennsylvania, founded by the English, become a colony of Aliens, who will shortly be so numerous as to Germanize us instead of our Anglifying them, and will never adopt our language or customs, any more than they can acquire our complexion?”

    • bynd says:

      Never has the written word been take so much out of context that what you have done to Franklin on here. Not to mention context is everything and you have none.

  8. I have to agree with the person who suggested Mr. Lively employ an editor. If one is impelled to say “Stay with me for a moment” at the start of one’s second graf, the should give one pause for thought.

    I strongly suggest using the Scriviner app for anything beyond 300 words. It helps one organize one’s thoughts.

  9. This author doesn't understand DACA. says:

    “Essentially, this is program wherein illegal immigrants can petition the government for U.S. Citizenship if they can prove they were brought here as a child, against their own volition, and have been actively contributing to the betterment of our society.” There is no pathway to citizenship in the DACA program. It’s a temporary two-year reprieve from deportation — ie, “deferred action.” It’s not a permanent solution. It’s a stop gap until Congress can get its crap together and change immigration law to a more humane, workable solution systemwide and for these Nebraska youth.

    And that’s just it. Congress has the authority to change the law when the current law is unworkable or is a mess. Instead, certain Congressional leaders would rather the immigration issue be an ongoing wedge issue to divide communities and score votes rather than solve the damn problem.

  10. I Dream of Juana says:

    How fortunate that you’ve waxed poetically (and interminably) about the responsibility of our elected officials to represent the will of the people.

    Monday, September 25, 2017
    “A staggering 86 percent of Americans say they support a right to residency for undocumented immigrants who arrived in the United States as children, according to an ABC News/Washington Post poll..

    Support spanned demographic groups, including three-quarters of Republicans and conservatives, 86 and 87 percent of independents and moderates and 97 and 96 percent of Democrats and liberals”.

    • I dream of baby Juana says:

      Do you think abortions should be legal under any circumstances, legal only under certain circumstances or illegal in all circumstances?
      Legal under any Legal only under certain Illegal in all No opinion
      % % % %
      2017 May 3-7 29 50 18 3
      2016 May 4-8 29 50 19 2
      2015 May 6-10 29 51 19 1
      2014 May 8-11 28 50 21 2
      2013 May 2-7 26 52 20 2
      2012 Dec 27-30 28 52 18 3

      So, let’s make sure the majority is heard in all cases. Yes, we agree on something!!!!!

    • Joshua Lively says:

      When I was at the State Department in 2003, one of my instructors bragged weekly about literally making up statistics for the Washington Post because they were too lazy to do actual surveys. 96.548% of surveys are made up on the spot, and 4 out of 5 people think the fifth person is an idiot. Don’t be the 5th person. (*Sorry, it would be funnier if you understood Arabic).

      • Barb E. Dahl says:

        But answer the question, please. Do you think abortion should be legal under any circumstance?
        Do you think parents should be allowed to abort a fetus if it is going to be disabled? Or how about if the parents are just too young and poor to care for a baby? How do you weigh in on abortion as an admitted Libertarian?

      • Joshua Lively says:


        No political affiliation or label places me above being a human being. I don’t agree with abortion, and I certainly don’t think the U.S. government should be funding it; however, there are different circumstances in which I can understand the woman’s position. Rape, incest, or when the mother’s health is in serious jeopardy… under those finite conditions, which make up an extremely small portion of abortion cases, I can be understanding. However, those conditions do not negate the symbiotic relationship between the mother and an unborn child. The child, in and of itself, is a separate lifeform… and therefore, IMHO, has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Meaning, under those rare circumstances, it is still a decision to end another human life and it needs to be weighed and measured. There are plenty of people out there that cannot have children and would love to adopt a baby.

        But, to answer your question, I believe it is the government’s job to protect our rights as human beings, and since unborn babies are still human beings, I think it perfectly fine for the government to enact legislation that protects their right to life.

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