Jonette Christian’s recent op-ed (“Maine Voices: President Obama is on the wrong side of the immigration fight,” Nov. 15), as previous ones, reflects unqualified opposition to giving sanctuary or a path to citizenship to undocumented immigrants: They have broken immigration laws, she says, and we have a surplus of workers. Period.

For support, she references off-year election returns and a poll asking, coldly, whether immigration levels should be increased, decreased or kept at present levels.

Christian’s underlying assumptions are that we who are citizens have sole claim to this bountiful land, that we have no responsibility for the plight of immigrants here out of desperation, that they are displacing American workers and that they are unwanted. None will stand examination.

Major faiths and the Constitution’s “general welfare” commitment agree: We are obliged to share our bounty and “welcome the stranger in our midst.” And we take that obligation seriously, as government programs, churches, food pantries, immigrant service organizations and millions of helpful families’ and individuals’ assistance to those who come seeking survival attest. Without objection, Presidents Reagan and Bush I did what President Obama is doing.

We are morally responsible for NAFTA’s displacement of millions of Mexican farm families and victims of U.S.-financed death squads and repression in Central America, our Vietnam and the Middle East aggressions and First World exploitation-related violence in Africa. Homeless and endangered refugees are their consequence.

Studies confirm that undocumented immigrants primarily take menial and agricultural jobs citizens will not take and, gaining education, jobs for which unemployed citizens lack training.

As for public opinion, few would declare against welcoming starving and desperate victims of NAFTA and children and families fleeing indiscriminate violence and genocide if the question is so put – fairly put.

Current opposition is largely ginned up by propaganda appeals, e.g. Gov. LePage’s, to fear that somebody will abuse government’s helping hand.