Historically, sanctuary was a sacred place where fugitives were immune from arrest. Why sacred? There are moments in societies when we know, at a gut level, that a thing was wrong. It was lawful to force march POW’s, hang children, and burn Vietnam villages.
Ferguson is responding to both our valued moral principles that govern human dignity-and the law. “To defend the Constitution…So help me God.” “Illegal immigrants have human rights under the Constitution despite their unlawful status.” “The 14th Amendment states that, no state shall . . deprive any person of life, liberty or property. They are protected against unlawful search and seizure. They have the right to sue, to defend themselves against charges if arrested, deported or removed from the United States.”
Trump violates our founding’s father’s intentions for immigrants. Today’s sanctuaries are anti-discrimination laws. Grabbing people off the street is to see this in the simplistic terms of an amoral goal that fails to solve this challenge intellectually.
Ferguson is protecting humanity from our past destructive instincts. Process non-violent illegal immigrants through a legal multi-year process. Force by mass arrest, is just as outdated as the laws that brutalized humanity in the past. What we hold sacred is human life.