Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Can/Should We Secure the Border?

I realize that here at RWP, like other blogs, we can't agree on every topic. I think immigration might be one of them. Lowdogg has Cuban ancestry and is from Florida, Bear has lived in Mexico, and I myself am a native of Southern California. In reality, I couldn't think of a better combination of people to discuss the issue.

My beliefs on the matter are fairly straightforward. My first belief is that we are a nation of immigrants in the truest sense of the word. Part of the reason why America is great, is because it has been a land where the oppressed, abused and neglected could come for a better life. In large part, our current immigration policy on paper reflects this and we as a nation admit thousands of legal immigrants onto our soil each year from hundreds of countries. This is a just goal and policy.

My second belief is that our current immigration enforcement policies must be drastically altered. An open porous border simply poses two many negatives. In addition to the obvious security risks, allowing thousands of illegal immigrants from central and south America to enter the country unfairly cause detriment to the millions of other foreigners who wish to enter the country, but don't have the convenience of a shared border with us. I fail to see why Mexico and other central and south american countries should be given a de facto privilege, simply because of their geography. In addition, admitting so many from a single country makes assimilation to America that much more difficult.

My third belief is that the border must be secured, before any other guest-worker/amnesty plans are considered. In reality, if the border is not secured, no guest-worker policy, no matter how many hoops exist, will stem the tide of illegal immigration. I think that the conservatives who are so upset about the guest-worker plan, as suggested are not so bothered because it is anything but deportation, but are upset because they fear that it will be amnesty now, enforecement later. If we fail to secure the border NOW, we will be in this exact same predicament years to come, but instead of 12 million illegals, it will be 20 million. I am not demanding that a wall be built, only that the border be secured. If it requires a wall, so be it. We should feel no shame in building a wall. Whatever is necessary, we cannot even discuss or consider what we do with the people in this country illegally until we have enforcement.

Finally, the hardest question in my opinion is what about the 12 million illegals already in the country. I personally don't think we should try to deport all 12 million of them, and rip them from their families and jobs and strong ties they have in this country. However, we can, through proper enforcement create a climate that makes it more difficult for recently emmigrated illegals to find employment. specifically, we need to go after the employers. If employers stop hiring illegals, then the demand for illegals will dry up.

To me, if this nation really is so dependent on cheap labor, then all we would have to do is open the border and allow more legal immigrants into the country to fill those spots. I fail to see why these jobs can only be filled by Mexican workers. If they can only be filled by Mexican workers, then we can simply grant more visas to Mexicans.

I agree that conservatives shouldn't balk at any type of guest worker program, but I also believe that one shouldn't balk at the legitimate question of enforcement before anything else. It is not rascist or xenophobic to demand that our borders be secured. I am not against immigration, only illegal immigration.


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