I’ve given a lot of thought recently to immigration and what it means to us as a country.
In general, I am strongly in favor of immigration, as I believe that the contributions made by immigrants and their descendants are a major source of strength to us (the USA) as a nation. It is not accident that we used to be referred to, with great pride, as a “Melting Pot”.
The contributions made by immigrants are legion, and don’t require a listing here.
However, I do have a problem with the way immigration works today, and especially have a problem with the huge number of illegal immigrants and the problems that this presents us as a nation.
A few thoughts:
- Immigrants here illegally should be deported ASAP.
- The legal process to become an immigrant should not be as tortuous as it is – it needs to be easier.
- Our immigration “quotas” are probably too low
- We need to find a way to be more “merciful” to those trying to escape significant oppression in their home countries
- Illegal immigrants should not benefit from the birth of a child on US soil, thereby claiming citizenship. If you are here illegally, you should not be able to claim citizenship for a child born here.
- Immigrants must not be a drain on the economy (health care, welfare, etc.) and must pay taxes.
- The laws on the books need to be enforced.
I feel great sympathy for the waves of immigrants from countries where it is either difficult to make a living, or where people are persecuted.
However, I do not believe that coming from those places entitles people to ignore or violate our legal processes.
If you come from a “bad” place, I would probably welcome you to our shores, but not if you come illegally. Go through the process, however arduous and painful it might be. If you come here illegally, however badly I might feel for you personally, I would deport you in a moment.
I don’t have any problem with local law enforcement being able to check for immigration status of people they stop for any reason. Any immigrant should have his or her green card or other legal identification on his or her person at all times. If in doubt, law enforcement should refer the case to the immigration authorities.
In summary – let more immigrants in, we can use new blood. But, do it legally. Do not accept illegal immigration, and do whatever it takes to stop it.