Are Illegal Aliens Missing The Values of American Citizenship?

The purpose of the process of American citizenship is to acclimate people to the American value system that underlies the behaviors that have led to the social stability that allows us to pursue the life, liberty and happiness that has generated our prosperity.  When people are willing to violate our American laws by coming here illegally, they show a disregard for the value system that underlies them.  People act on their values. The danger of illegal immigration is that it provides for people who perhaps have lawless values to be amongst us.

If everyone obeys the traffic lights there are fewer accidents. If everyone in America follows American law, and the values of how the culture works, then there are fewer social mishaps like crimes.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) web site, states its new naturalization test places “an emphasis on the fundamental concepts of American democracy and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, will help encourage citizenship applicants to learn and identify with the basic values we all share as Americans.”  (Brochure “Pathway To U.S. Citizenship M-685 (rev. 04/09), page 1)

There are 100 questions on the civic portion of the test.  The answer to question number 53 is citizens promise to “defend the Constitution and laws of the United States.”  What is a person promising to defend when he/she enters the U.S. illegally?  Such a person is less likely to learn anything about the U.S. Constitution, which makes our way of life possible.

Some say they don’t want to call any person “illegal,” yet America is a Constitutional Republic, meaning everyone from the President to minimum wage workers must follow the “law.”  The process of citizenship explains the values that matter most to the stability and perpetuation of America.

Earl C. Wallace is author of

The Three-Dimensional Leader: Negotiating Your Mission, Resources and Context.  

Visit his web page at and review other insights on his “Three-Dimensional Leadership Blogs in 300 Words or Less!”