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economic justice | immigration

sugestions for sticking up for immigrants

I firmly belive that these folks give a lot more than they take in our country. Sadly, many otherwise reasonable people seem to be pretty mis-informed on this issue. Ive got a few arguements I use when the topic of "illegal aliens" comes up. Anyone out there have some more ideas to share?
The common feeling is that "theyre taking our jobs, or "driving down wages" My answer to this is something along the lines of starting with the statement that these folks give more than they take. And no, theyre not taking your job. Most of us could not preform typical agriculture, forestry or factory jobs regardless of the wage. I worked in sawmills through college and a year after. I am not physically or mentally capable of doing that work now if they paid me $100 an hour. And I'm in better than average shape here.

"Theyre using all our services and not paying taxes."
The oppisite is true- theyre paying in to social security but never can claim the benefits. Take a look at the welfare/unemployment/jail line around here and its mostly all white people.

If a family member is sick or disabled they are more likely care for this person at home rather than dump them on the state.

Then theres the whole bit about how immigration has to deport these folks to uphold the law. And that Potter is a traiter, etc. I dont think so. Law enforcement has wide discretion in this manner. It's a stretch, but lets compare it to jaywalking. If youre walking to work and cross the street, against the light or out of the crosswalk. You dont get a ticket. If you are bothering people, being a jackass, then you get a jaywalking ticket. I know, I got a jaywalking ticket for this reason. (go to court and say your sorry)

I belive typically if they have someone who is involved in gangs, dealing drugs or drunk driving they can and do use immigration laws to get them off the street or out of town.

The bush administrations immigration plan is terrible. To me it looks like institutionalized slavery. (someone out there have facts-n-figures to back me up here)

I really do belive that these folks contribute much more than they use.

of course they do 27.Jun.2007 07:52

but they are not the issue

the real issue here is not the poor and desperate worker but the economic and political forces which shape his journey. The government of Mexico is just a convenient structure of control for the 40-50 families that own most everything in the country. It's policies do nothing for the ordinary citizen and when there is nothing for someone at home they go where the money- and therefore the food- is. That somewhere is across the border to the jobs the US depends on them to fill- and then the US government milks them of taxes they'll never file to get back and layoff pay it'll never have to cough up- and because they are "illegal" they have no ability to organize to protect themselves.

Until the government of Mexico is forced by her people to remedy their situation, the hungry will have to leave to earn their bread. As long as the bread can be earned here, this is one of the places they will come. It is not enough to stop undocumented migrants at the border- which, if successful, will do interesting things to the price and availability of foods we take for granted- the USA needs to engage the Mexican government in talks about real economic reforms for her people.

I Agree 27.Jun.2007 09:02


Most of the anti-immigration racists I have seen couldnt do an hours work in the fields without having a heart attack.....HEY ! THAT GIVES ME AN IDEA ! Why dont we round up the OIR and all the other hatemongers and make them do those jobs that they are being denied...picking strawberries, moving irrigation pipe..you know , the good jobs that soooo many white Amwericans want , but cant get because "the Mexicans" beat them to it. They will drop like flies,and the farmers can use their bloated , misshapen bodies for fertilizer, and we will be free from their hatred. Its a win win.

econ jargon on your side 29.Jun.2007 18:01

line mellorc@reed.edu

this article in slate goes through the economic math of how little someone who is anti-immigration would have to value immigrants (how they value immigrants versus how they value americans)


this is the conclusion: "to justify keeping the immigrant out, you'd have to say he's worth less than one-fifth of an American citizen."