Let’s Look at Trump’s Immigration Platform
On Monday, Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump proposed a new set of questions to be presented to immigrants, in an attempt to screen out people who may potentially be a threat to American security.
“A Trump Administration will establish a clear principle that will govern all decisions pertaining to immigration: we should only admit into this country those who share our values and respect our people,” the candidate said in a major foreign policy speech.
“In addition to screening out all members or sympathizers of terrorist groups, we must also screen out any who have hostile attitudes towards our country or its principles – or who believe that Sharia law should supplant American law. Those who do not believe in our Constitution, or who support bigotry and hatred, will not be admitted for immigration into the country,” Trump added.
Whether the proposed questions are eventually added to an already complicated immigration process remains to be seen. But in looking back at the history of immigration to the United States, tests and criteria have been a frequent factor in considering admission to this country.
However, the questions offered now are faulty in two ways: One, the questions do not address why American values are the way they are and two, the test is just too darn easy. Why a number of questions have been lowered from 100 questions to 50 questions to 25, and now to your basic run of the mill ten (10) questions. Insofar as I have taken many of these tests the only measures that come to me are “lesser questions are easier to answer.”
In our form of constitutional government, Congress has the authority to decide who may become a citizen or reside in the United States. Congress set the first basic immigration requirement in 1790, which required a two-year residency in the United States for those who sought citizenship.
The Naturalization Act of 1795 increased the residency requirement to five years residence and added a requirement to give a three years notice of intention to apply for citizenship, and the Naturalization Act of 1798 further increased the residency requirement to 14 years and required five years notice of intent to apply for citizenship.