Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley this week instructed officials at a Baltimore prison not to detain suspected illegal alien prisoners for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) unless they “present an actual threat to public safety.” The laws of the United States apparently no longer apply within the borders of Maryland.

Across the country, states and localities are refusing to work with the US government to enforce immigration laws. Some have gone as far as declaring themselves “sanctuary cities,” or places where illegal aliens can live in work (or not work) without fear of the law.

It seems like just yesterday that liberals were griping about the Supreme Court’s affirmation of Hobby Lobby’s right not to provide abortafacients to its employees. It was a slippery slope to anarchy, they argued. They almost made “anarchy” sound like a bad thing so I’ll assume they’re against it.

Their arguments were childish at best. If we don’t violate the Green Family’s rights, the next thing you know it’ll be human sacrifice! Better not to have any of that pesky religious freedom stuff lest it get out of control.

I call this the Andrew Clark argument. Children of the eighties will recall John Bender from the film The Breakfast Club complaining to the assistant principal that one student, Andrew Clark, is allowed to get up from his seat. “How come Andrew gets to get up?” says Bender. “If he gets up, we’ll all get up, it’ll be anarchy!”

Of course, allowing the Greens the same rights guaranteed to all Americans will not lead to anarchy because the law is on their side. The court ruled that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act protected their free exercise rights. I would argue that the Constitution does too. Upholding the law is the opposite of anarchy.

If you want to see what real anarchy looks like, just have a look at our southern border. Illegals are streaming across precisely because they believe that the law does not apply to them. NBC News’s Stephanie Gosk reported in July about attitudes in Honduras that might be driving young people to attempt the trek to and across the US-Mexico border. “There has been for about a year now, this idea …flirting around places like Honduras, that when young people, when they arrive to the U.S., mothers of children when they arrive, that they are going to be allowed to stay. There was a director of one of the groups here who said that a lot of women believed if they could just show up at the border, the official border crossing, and they would be allowed to stay.”

And they will be.

They are not misinformed. Our top law enforcement officials are dedicated to getting as many undocumented Democrats into this country as possible. Enforcement is a joke.

The freefall into lawlessness with regard to illegal immigration is having a myriad of second and third order effects but none more detrimental than the warping of our concept of the rule of law.

Those who cross our border are quickly absorbing this lesson. The first thing they learn about the country they have entered, and which they will likely never leave, is that the rules don’t apply to them. They’re special. Rather than being turned around and sent back where they came from, they are sheltered and fed at the taxpayers’ expense. On top of that, they are then given bus, train, or plane tickets to wherever they want within the interior of the US.

If they don’t have IDs they are even allowed to board airplanes without proving their identity. (TSA initially lied about this but has since admitted it’s true.) Elderly Irish nuns still have to show their IDs and go through the whole rigmarole, because, you know, they might be terrorists! Or something.

Well, not exactly. I think even liberals know that elderly Irish nuns don’t actually pose a terrorist threat but they are uncomfortable with allowing certain groups through airport screening with little scrutiny because other groups might cry foul. By “other groups,” I mean Muslims, of course. We all have to endure an equal amount of harassment at the airport to avoid the appearance of singling out Muslims.

All of us, that is, except illegal aliens. They don’t have to show identification because they’re obviously not terrorists. MS-13 members maybe, but not terrorists. Predictably, the terrorist supergroup known as ISIS has been overheard on social media discussing plans to infiltrate the US via the southern border. We’ll probably give them a ride to their intended target.

After illegal aliens have crossed the border and are safely transported, at the taxpayers’ expense, to Your Town, USA, they are then given court dates. Most will not show up. When White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest was asked in June what percentage of the recent surge of illegal aliens were actually appearing for their deportation hearings, Earnest pleaded ignorance. If an anecdote tells us anything, only two out of twenty illegal aliens appeared for scheduled hearings at a federal court in Dallas. That’s a no-show rate of ninety percent.

Rules are for the other guy. That’s the message they hear repeated over and over again.

Is it any surprise that illegal aliens then go on to work under the table, thus stiffing the Social Security Administration of much needed funds? Or that they sometimes “borrow” other people’s social security numbers? That they drive without licenses or insurance, often drunk? In my state, cops are fed up with pulling over illegal alien unlicensed drivers because they know that the drivers will simply give false names and then skip their court dates. Illegal aliens also vote illegally in our elections and collect welfare benefits to which they are not entitled. President Obama’s illegal alien Aunt Zeituni even made an illegal campaign contribution to her nephew’s campaign.

This is what real anarchy looks like. It is the predictable outcome of a judicial system that refuses to enforce the law against a certain group of people. That group of people learns with great alacrity that they are entitled to show the same disregard toward all of our laws that they showed to the laws they brushed aside on their way through the door.