The only difference between a baby moments before leaving the womb and a baby outside the womb is documentation. A birth certificate and Social Security card are issued to a child within a few weeks of birth. This paperwork is necessary to make the child an official citizen of the United States, but they cannot actually confer biological personhood status. Personhood may be recognized by words on a page, but the words cannot make a person. Besides, I’ve been reliably informed that undocumented people are still people and deserve all of the same rights as those of us with documentation.
I’ve also been told many times that undocumented people have the right to cross through barriers and over borders in pursuit of life and liberty. Planned Parenthood even says that the undocumented “have the right to live.” I totally agree with this sentiment. All people have the right to live. And I certainly would not support summary execution of immigrants on the southern border. It’s fortunate that no one has ever suggested such a thing.
But there is, you might say, a different southern border that is quite often protected by violent means. Undocumented infants who are trying to cross the border of the birth canal in hopes of a better life are routinely stabbed, poisoned, crushed, and dismembered for doing so. The murder of these migrants is especially egregious because, unlike the type from Central America, they really have no choice but to leave their homeland. It is often insisted that migrants from Mexico and Guatemala are “forced” to leave because of conditions in their countries. Well, undocumented infants really are forced. They did not choose to be conceived in their womb of origin. They do not choose when and if they are born. They are victims of circumstance.
Immigrants deserve a chance. Isn’t that the slogan? They are “dreamers.” They are good people, decent people, just trying to survive. These are the lines, correct? Am I saying this right? Well it applies just as well to infants.
It is claimed that we are all undocumented immigrants. This is false, of course. Our ancestors, maybe, but not us. And even our ancestors may have come to this country legally, through Ellis Island. Or maybe they came back in settler and pioneer times, when there was no documentation thus no distinction between undocumented and documented. But it is true that we were all, at one time, undocumented infants. All of us began our existence in the womb. All of us were granted the opportunity to flee the womb and build a life for ourselves. Who are we to deny this right to the undocumented infants who come after us? It is the worst form of discrimination.
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