Donald Trump wants to build a wall. The United Kingdom tries to leave the European Union in an attempt to regain sovereignty over its borders. Every year, thousands of people drown in the Mediterranean while trying to cross over into the EU. At the same time, many European countries sell citizenship to wealthy individuals. Do states have a right to pick and choose who may enter into their respective territories?
It is a mark of the liberal state that it grants certain liberal rights to its citizens, including the right to go wherever they please. The liberal state awards this right, or freedom of movement, to its citizens by virtue of their humanity: Because the citizens are human beings and any human should enjoy certain freedoms, such as the freedom to believe in whichever god they want to believe in or the freedom to move or go wherever they want, the state should respect and protect these rights. This is a central tenant of the ideal of the liberal state. Now, those who are not currently citizens of that particular liberal state are humans nonetheless and should thus enjoy the same rights are those who are already citizens. It would be inconsistent for the liberal state to negate this. But whenever the liberal state disallows a non-citizen entry into its territory, it does, in fact, negate their liberal freedom of movement and behaves inconsistently.
This page was last edited on Thursday, 16 Jan 2020 at 11:58 UTC