The two extremes in the immigration debate go something like this:

“Send all 12 million undocumented workers back from whence they came. After all, why should you reward immigrants whose first act in America was breaking the law?

The second thought is much more compassionate, calling on our better natures to say that immigrants who have heeded the call for hard-to fill jobs in America are deserving of a place in our society. Let them in, or at least let them stay.

In terms of the immigration debate, it is hard to find the middle ground between these two pole-opposite views — a place where the “twain will meet.”

The two attitudes make me think, in a roundabout way, of working at the Best. Company. Ever.

The curious punctuation of a company motto is now something to be expected, I’ve noticed the same peculiar style of grammar. Wrangler has “Real. Comfortable. Jeans.” and I think BMW has a period-laden motto as well.

It is as if the period adds a ring of certainty, gravity,  and exclamation to what otherwise might be a farfetched notion.

The reason I bring up the motto of Target (“Best. Company. Ever.”) is that I was recalling working for Target in a previous life. I say “previous life” in the sense it is a life I don’t have now.

At the time, I was working part time overnight for Target on the ad set team, setting “advertised at” and “sale” price tags on grocery store items every Saturday.

A group of about four us would scan out all the signs hung in the store from the previous week and take down those signs, depositing the plastic holders and the paper inserts into their respective grocery bag on the shopping carts we commanded. By about 1 a.m., we would start to scan in the new signs and placing them at the appropriate spot on the store shelves. On a normal day, we would finish up about 7 a.m. after starting the shift at 10 p.m. the previous night.

While the two guys and the lady I worked with were apparently American-born, most of the rest of the overnight team at Target were Spanish speakers and likely new immigrants.

Why was this? I would assume that those workers proved their mettle in the tough overnight grind of restocking shelves with CDs and seafood, blueberries and bedspreads.

Were there not more American-born workers with no-doubt documents who wanted to work overnight? There were a few, to be sure, but I often asked myself that question every night when the managers would put on a greatest hits album from some Mexican crooner over the public address system.

That was tough to endure, an arrow of outrageous fortune in my self-centered view of my work environment.

But I came to see the hard-working habits of the Hispanic crew, as I am sure that the managers of Target also came to value.

Later, long after I had quit, I heard secondhand that some of that workforce were released because of fraudulent documents.

Whatever happened to those workers? Who did Target hire to replace them?

Did those who were released return to Mexico? Perhaps. More likely, they are probably hard at work at some other U.S. business.

Others like them may be helping to harvest and pack U.S. fruit and vegetable crops. Without them, how could U.S. fresh produce be picked and packed?

And how — and when — will the U.S. come to terms with these contrary impulses of compassion and the desire to have the rule of law?

Is this an impossible dream? Or in the words of that Mexican crooner, a “sueño imposible” ?