A journal of academic theology

Kristin E. Heyer

Internalized Borders: Immigration Ethics in the Age of Trump

The Trump administration’s immigration measures and attendant dehumanizing rhetoric have fanned the flames of nationalism and sown fear in communities. Its internal enforcement strategies are bolstered by manipulative narratives that perpetuate myths and reflect facile analyses of complex dilemmas, focusing on symptoms rather than causes of migration. Reducing immigration questions to the locus of border crossers alone eclipses from view transnational actors responsible for economic instability, violent conflict, or labor recruitment, and also eclipses their accountability. Recent developments in migration ethics help illuminate significant historical and structural contexts of migration as well as models of justice and norms for negotiating duties of reception that better reflect such relationships. Attending to underlying fears and idolatries that contribute to exclusionary dynamics also emerges as critical for advancing just policy reforms and cultivating civic friendship moving forward.

Reframing Displacement and Membership: Ethics of Migration

The mounting human costs of contemporary displacement challenge dominant interpretations that frame migration in terms of security or economic functionalism alone. Surveying global realities and recent academic and pastoral contributions, the author argues that a migration ethic attentive to transnational human rights, scriptural hospitality, and mutually (re)constituted membership remains well poised to reorient reigning approaches.

Social Sin and Immigration: Good Fences Make Bad Neighbors

The category of social sin elucidates the connection between unjust structures that contribute to undocumented immigration and pervasive ideologies that foster resistance to reform efforts and immigrants themselves. Following an exploration of the development of social sin by Pope John Paul II and Latin American liberation theologians, the author advances a conception of social sin

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