Illegal Immigrants, Families, Legalization, Citizenship, Cost
Our country was built on immigration. It was the freedom and incredible gathering of genius, from around the world which ultimately created the wealthiest nation in human history. In the beginning, most immigrants were from Western Europe and there were virtually no restrictions on immigration. Since, most immigrants shared same cultural, traditional, religious, racial and ethnic values, there was a minimum of conflict in interests. As time passed, this changed, gradually, though. United States started attracting immigrants from Eastern Europe, Far East, South East and Middle East of Asia, as well. A very large number of Africans were imported in, as slaves. Historically speaking, as the proportion of any new ethnic or religious group increased in overall population, it caused serious frictions. Jews, Italians, Japanese, Chinese, and now Muslims and Spanish, are very good examples.
In every single one of these instances, opportunistic politicians and media, rose the fears of, America being taken over; America as we know, will not exist, anymore; our way of living is being threatened; our security is at stake; our freedoms are being taken away; immigrants are a burden on our economy; etc. History has shown that each and every time, these fears turned out to be vastly exaggerated, baseless and deceitful.
Each time America kept thriving and growing, because, it was not built on the basis of closing its doors for hard working, talented and smart people. It was built on the principle of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness for everyone. Each one of the feared, and new group of people, ultimately became an integrated and essential part of the country. Each one of those is now a valuable asset for the nation, whether it is Jews, Italians, Japanese or Chinese. Immigrants have always raised the value of nation and have resulted into immense economic growth, keeping us at the top of world.
Most immigrants are an essential, bottom part of hierarchy, built in our system. They pick up the toughest and least rewarding jobs. As they gradually become a more homogenized part of our national fabric via adaptation, education, and economic and financial wellbeing, through the generations, they move up the ladder, creating room for the newer immigrants. This cycle is going on since our inception, and this is the way it works. If we block the entrance into this cycle, by seriously discouraging the immigration, the whole cycle will be disrupted, and there will be no more of this. All the businesses that rely on these entry level workers like agriculture and services will suffer the most.
Many people argue, since our welfare system is far more extended, now, the cost of a legalized immigrants is far higher than before, hence not affordable. This is a totally dubious and ridiculous argument. The fact is that due to same reason the cost of illegal immigrants is even higher. They are forced to take lowest paid jobs, are subjected to exploitation, have limited opportunities to educate and train themselves and less access to healthcare and other necessities.
Unfortunately, the politics of bickering over immigration issues, is causing serious damages to our society, economy and national security. Politicians and media are only interested in scoring political points and ratings. Each and every one of them is looking forward to the next elections. There points of concern are, what is going to allow me to raise more money? What is going to get me the nomination? And what is going to win me the elections? The real interests of the people and country are not so important. Republicans don’t want to favor an open immigration policy, because, they do not want to lose the conservative base. Democrats don’t want to compromise on ‘naturalization for everyone’, as the liberal base is very important for them.
The immigration policy debate always gets doomed by this extreme polarization. Is anyone thinking, what is good for America? Immigration policy is not just about taking out the current illegal and undocumented workers from shadows. It is about our future generations. We do not want to raise a very significant proportion of our next generation in poverty, fear, lake of education and health care, limited access to credit and loans, hindered ability to start businesses, create and innovate. We want our nest generations to be fully equipped with tools they will need to survive and thrive, in this increasingly shrinking world.
We are still paying the price of raising our generations under slavery. The gaps created by slavery related poverty and its associates, are still causing serious problems to our society. Some mistakes take centuries to get fixed. If we force the next generations of immigrants to grow under poverty, they will become a serious pull back on our future economy, and our future generations will have to pay big price for that. Those days of keeping certain segments of population, permanently underserved, are long gone.
We live in an era, in which everything and everyone is being increasingly integrated into one, by technology. More the forward push outweighs the backward pull, better is it for everyone, faster is the progress and growth. If the backward pull from poor, welfare dependent, uneducated, under served, mentally and physically less developed is large, harder it is for the nation to move forward. For a better future, everyone must have equal opportunities in social, economic, financial, educational, employment and healthcare spheres. Creating and maintaining an environment which hampers this ability is highly detrimental to society.
The time to score political points is well over. Creating deadlocks is inefficient, and waste of time and resources. It is time for Congress to do its job, the job we pay them for. Change the extremely disruptive and malfunctioning immigration policy. It is complicated, outdated, inefficient, wasteful and expensive. It is doing no good to our country. Its enforcement is costing huge sums of money to our already bankrupt government. Be rational and be serious. Find a way. A realistic and practical way. Our economy is, and will remain a magnet for immigrants. Our businesses and economy need them. So, we have to make it work for them.