James Rocha
Louisiana State University
While politicians seek to increase punitive measures against so-called "illegal aliens," it is worth asking whether unauthorized immigrants are obligated by immigration laws that would demand their punishment, whether it is deportation or jail time. I seek to examine this question in light of the traditional defenses of legal obligations: consent, prudential interest, and fairness. Due to the various ways in which the benefits of society are largely excluded from them and the severe penalties that the state seeks to impose on them, these obligations cannot be justified. Unauthorized immigrants do not consent to follow these immigration laws under any of the usual meanings of "consent." We cannot provide a Hobbesian argument since the state refuses to offer its protection in exchange for the acceptance of benefits. Finally, the principle of fairness could not require these immigrants to be obligated since their contributions to society outweigh the benefits they receive.
Keywords Applied Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 1077-1999
DOI pcw20132011
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In Defense of Anarchism by Robert Paul Wolff. [REVIEW]Gerald Dworkin - 1971 - Journal of Philosophy 68 (18):561-567.
In Defense of Anarchism.Robert Paul Wolff (ed.) - 1970 - University of California Press.

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