Topic category: Other/General
Myths (and Truths) of the Illegal Immigration Invasion
Now that the Mexican flags have once again been neatly folded and tucked away in the sock drawer, and civilization has successfully weathered a ‘Day without Immigrants’, maybe the time has come for us to actually have a rational dialogue on illegal immigration. Preferably in English if you don’t mind.
A variety of myths and misconceptions have been purposefully propagated by those who would like us to see illegal aliens as mere ‘undocumented workers’ who have every right to the privileges once reserved for actual citizens of the United States. Immigration ‘activists’ use bumper sticker slogans and simplistic sound bites repeated over and over in an attempt to win the hearts and minds of the American people. We are all descended from immigrants one way or another, but to muddy the stream of thought with the assertion that there is little difference between an illegal and a legal immigrant is a smart tactical, if dishonest, move and one that sows confusion in those attempting to make sense of this national debate.
I’d like to address just a few of the myths that have been spread about illegal immigration:
• Illegal immigrants are only doing work Americans won’t do.
The truth is that illegals are taking good jobs, or what used to be good paying jobs, from Americans. Ask anyone who used to work in the construction, hotel or restaurant industries and they’ll tell you quite a different story than what is being portrayed. Are there some jobs that Americans in general are not as willing to do? Yes. Do these require twelve to eighteen million illegal immigrants, and millions of more legal immigrants, to fill? Of course not.
One could even make the argument that there is no such thing as low income jobs filled by illegal immigrants. They are really subsidized income jobs with the US taxpayer picking up the tab. The scope of the societal costs from such a poorly paid and sometimes exploited workforce is overwhelming. You, the taxpayer, pay tens of billions for entitlements to these tens of millions and their families. This includes food stamps, public housing, Medicaid, Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Earned Income Tax Credit, public schooling, the WIC program, food stamps, and Temporary Assistance to Needy Families.
Removing illegal immigrants from the work force would only raise wages, relieve an overwhelming economic burden on the welfare, correctional, medical and educational systems, lower the unemployment rate, and force a few people to clean their own pools or mow their own grass until they could find an enterprising teenager to do it for them. To act as if our national economy could not survive without an additional three million ‘undocumented workers’ a year is simply ridiculous and a red herring argument at best. For those who make the arguments that open borders are ‘needed’ the question is really on their shoulders as to how many millions of illegal immigrants do they think we really need. I’ve yet to receive a straight answer to that question.
• Building The Wall across the southern border is morally equivalent to the Berlin Wall built by communist totalitarians.
Perhaps the silliest argument I’ve heard yet, but one stated with all seriousness on the Senate floor by Colorado’s own Senator Ken Salazar and shamelessly alluded to by those who cringe at the idea of a secure border. Never mind that one wall was built to keep people in and the other would be built to keep people out. One kept people from escaping to freedom, the other would be built to protect a free people from those who seek to break its laws and violate its national borders. We all know that good fences make good neighbors. Sovereignty begins at the border and a country is not a nation if anyone, at anytime, can come in whenever they feel like it.
• We have a responsibility to let in anyone who wants to immigrate.
Not everyone can come here. If we let everyone come, they would. The American people have no moral responsibility to perpetually take in untold millions of people just because they would rather live here than in their country of birth. We are the most generous and compassionate nation the world has ever seen but that doesn’t mean everyone is guaranteed the right to live in this country just because they want to. Nor does it mean that the American standard of living has to be compromised due to the underdevelopment and corruption of other countries.
We are a nation of laws that should be respected, not circumvented and violated at will. It is Mexico’s responsibility to reform its corrupt government and palsied economy. That won’t happen unless Mexico quits using the US as a dumping ground for its poor, its desperate, and its criminal element. Illegal immigration is the safety valve used by the Mexican government to prevent true reform from social pressure at home. It has also become the second biggest source of income for Mexico as millions of immigrants (both legal and illegal) send tens of billions of American dollars back home to their family and friends. Billions of dollars that otherwise would have stayed in American communities are siphoned off to keep afloat a crippled economy and an unbelievable culture of corruption.
• Illegal immigration is not related to national security.
The proponents and defenders of illegal immigration advocate what is effect an open borders philosophy. If anyone can stroll across the border due to lax or inadequate enforcement then so can drug runners, violent gang members, sexual predators, common criminals as well as the next terrorist waiting to strike. These are all intertwined when it comes to ‘national security’. Whether it is keeping your child safe from the drug pusher, your wife safe from a violent predator or your state capitol safe from the evil intent of a terrorist armed with a dirty bomb, the security of the average American is as an important element of ‘national security’ as protecting a national monument. A secure border is absolutely essential to national security and the safety of the American people.
• This is ‘their land’, stolen from Mexico, and the concepts of borders and national citizenship are inherently racist.
The implication seems to be that we should all somehow transport ourselves back to pre-1492 borders. It is a far more racist argument than any I’ve heard from those seeking to stem the illegal immigrant invasion. The crowds waving Mexican flags may wish to re-fight the Mexican-American war, create the nation of Aztlan, and give a good many of us a one way ticket off the continent but such arguments tend to backfire badly with the American public and are only accepted by white apologists and the occasional guilt-ridden college professor. Attempting to deal with modern realities and the modern concept of nation-states should not be an insurmountable intellectual achievement. It is not racist to state that any nation should not allow ten thousand people a day to violate its borders.
The pinnacle of Western Civilization has the right, and the obligation, to defend its borders, language and culture from those who refuse any attempt at assimilation. It is hypocrisy to despise the very entity you seek entry, support and sustenance from. Hyphenated Americanism is a seductive ideology but one that creates a vicious Balkanization that is even now rearing its ugly head across the fruited plain.
Like the Roman Empire, we have let our borders be overrun even as our society self destructs from the inside. The leaders of the two major political parties have sold their soul for cheap labor on the one hand and cheap votes on the other.
Many voices of reason are finally being heard in the immigration debate. Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo is no longer a lone voice in the wilderness crying out for something, anything, to be done to stop the illegal invasion. We now see him joined by a host of national figures bringing legitimacy and attention to the issue. Such diverse figures as Frosty Wooldridge, Phyllis Schlafly, Lou Dobbs, Dick Lamb, David Limbaugh, Jim Gilchrist, and Michele Malkin have lent their voice of outrage to stopping illegal immigration and protecting America’s borders. They have been joined by a slim majority of the House of Representatives, a host of other voices in TV, radio and print, as well as by a growing majority of average Americans who are completely and totally fed up.
An unbelievable one-eighth of the Mexican population (and a significant number from other countries) has already immigrated to the United States. Several million more will attempt to cross the border this year. At what point is it correct to say that “enough is enough”? It is a national disgrace that the leaders of both political parties have lacked the courage and vision to take the steps necessary to define and protect our borders.
There is no excuse for the travesty that is unfolding on a daily basis. An estimated 1.2 million illegal aliens will be apprehended storming US borders this year alone. For every one caught another two or three will escape capture. The question is not just what needs to be done but why has it not been done already. Balkanization, national bankruptcy and cultural suicide are not my idea of the American dream.
The message the American people must send is simple, but profound:
No amnesty for illegals, and secure the borders.
How much should we be willing to spend? As much as it takes. Some ask if it be really be done. The answer is absolutely. One only has to have the will to use the resources available to correct the problem.
It is difficult to watch a nation, a people, and a culture slit its own throat. The marching protestors may have waved the Mexican flag with pride, but it the American flag, and the people it represents, who have been trampled beneath their feet.
David M. Huntwork
David Huntwork (Author)
Biography - David M. Huntwork
David Huntwork is a conservative activist and freelance columnist in Northern Colorado where he lives with his wife and three young daughters. He is the author of the book No Apologies: In Defense of Common Sense and the Conservative Ideology which can be purchased at http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fAcctID=3576295. Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions at DaveHuntwork@juno.com. You may also view his bio and past columns at: http://DavidHuntwork.tripod.com.