The Way Forward


Statue-of-Liberty

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

These words adorn the Statue of Liberty. I’ve been giving them a lot of thought lately. I thought about what they mean in today’s United States. I thought they meant a lot. I thought they meant we were a beacon of light, an open and accepting country. I thought they meant something. But it’s pretty clear, now, that in today’s republican’t border states that these words mean absolutely nothing. The Statue of Liberty, the shining icon of what our country is supposed to be representative of, means nothing to conservative citizens anymore. If it did they would read these words and they would understand that the way forward for this country is to open our doors.

The biggest complaint I hear from conservatives is that they don’t want undocumented people receiving services that their tax dollars pay for. The easiest way to fix that is to allow everyone to become documented. I’m not talking in the scary 1984 way that many people’s minds would automatically jump to. I’m suggesting that we allow anyone who wants to come here and work and live in our fine country should be allowed to. As they come across the border we set them up, for a fee, with a government ID, a tax income number, and collect any copies of personally identifiable information (PII) necessary to verify that they are who they say they are.

This isn’t the same, but it would be similar to the green card process. In addition to this created legal status we then follow our normal path to citizenship. Stay in the U.S. Apply for naturalization. Take a test, etc. Here’s the beauty part. While working, and presumably getting and education, you would pay a higher tax rate than current U.S. citizens. Naturally there would be some exceptions. Those with a criminal history would still not be allowed. If you became a criminal before you became a citizen you could then be deported and not allowed back in.

This would drastically reduce the amount of money spent on guarding our borders and probably even generate quite a bit of revenue. At least more than enough money to pay for those whose job it would be to document the incoming emigrant. (Look at that, it creates jobs too, a lot of jobs) We would also reduce the amount of money spent on trying to track down and deport illegal immigrants already residing in our country if we allowed blanket clemency for those who registered, again for a fee, under the new system. It would make a lot fewer criminals of people already living here. It would also immediately resolve situations like this.

I’m not saying that this solution would be without complications. Any solution would have complications. But this makes it a whole lot easier to maintain the influx of those who wish to come here. It also makes it a whole lot more humane than the current solution, which is akin to Hitler’s final solution. Sending them back or refusing them entry is a death sentence that no one should be subjected to. I get that this opinion won’t be popular or appreciated by some and I’m okay with that. Because it’s clear to me that this type of thinking is what we need to get our county back on track. It’s what we need to become the example that we claim to be. This is right.

einstein-right_popular

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3 comments

  1. Honestly, I think it’s a bit utopian. First, it evidences a lack of understanding for the history of immigration in this country. My grandfather came over from Sweden in the early 20th century. He knew English well enough to get a job and he came with skills as a bookkeeper. He was expected to register upon arrival at Ellis Island and to maintain employment for a number of years. Those employers would vouch for him when he was eligible to become a citizen, which I believe took five or seven years then (my mother’s paternal grandparents went through a similar process a decade earlier; the period of time was different, but I can never remember which was which). Although you could general get away with petty crimes and just move on to another part of the country, major crimes resulted in deportation. Since there was only a handful of ports of entry into the country, you weren’t getting back in.

    The country went through periods of very liberal immigration policies, followed by protests by the American people, which resulted in tightening of immigration policies, which were eventually loosened again. This allowed an opportunity for the nation to absorb the new immigrants and for the new immigrants to assimilate our culture and political values. The loudest protests from Americans came about when too many people came from countries where workers were low-skilled — eastern Europe and Ireland. When there were too many such workers, low-skilled Americans suffered because they couldn’t compete for jobs. Moreover, the country suffered because we often needed highly skilled workers (for the era) rather than mere laborers.

    Today, we are in a similar situation. Our American-born teenagers cannot find jobs. If you research it you will find that the jobs are still there, just filled by illegal immigrants who work for less than minimum wage. They cannot compete for the low-skilled jobs that teenagers used to do in the past because they have to work for minimum wage or better. So they go to school instead, but when employers are considering hires even in a position that requires a degree, they want to see job history, so these young Americans end up unable to get jobs, despite having a degree or two.

    Then there’s the issue of what is best of the national economy. Do we really need millions of lawn carers, waiters and the like? No. We really need highly-skilled workers. We should be encouraging immigration from Asian countries where students are trained in highly desirable skills. instead, we’re being invaded by landscapers and maids, so we cannot liberalize immigration from other countries whose workers would grow our economy.

    And, yes, there is the matter of benefits. We can’t afford the welfare system we’re supporting right now. Barring an unlikely course correction, the nation will be about $22 TRILLION in debt by the time Barack Obama leaves office. None of us are going to have any benefits if we don’t do something about that looming economic iceberg. Adding 10 million more benefit suckers is just going to hasten the collapse. It would one thing if the immigrants you’re talking of legalizing were highly skilled workers who could set off another economic golden age, but they aren’t. They’re benefit suckers and that’s the last thing we need more of.

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    1. I wanted to take your response seriously, I really did. I read it. Then I took a nap. Then I read it again for clarity. Just to let it all sink in I read it a third time, because I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Each time I gave you the benefit of the doubt. After the third reading and giving your response it’s due diligence I’ve come to the conclusion that you are what professionals call “of less than average intelligence.”

      Now please hear me out, I gave you that courtesy, you should do the same. You did get one thing right. The idea is a bit utopian. But let’s be clear, there’s nothing wrong with that. I think the word you meant to use was dystopian to best describe your opinion, but I don’t want to make assumptions so I’ll just leave it at that.

      In what facet exactly do you think I have a lack of understanding about the history of immigration. Is it that until the Immigration Act of 1924 we had completely open borders, no I’m pretty familiar with that bit of history. Is it that every update of that 1924 act has made it more and more difficult for anyone outside of the U.S. to enter and become citizens, no I’m extremely familiar with that too. Is it that every single iteration of the Immigration Act including the Immigration Act of 1990 has created more illegal immigrants in the U.S. rather than work to reduce them, no again I’m actually pretty familiar with that too. But let’s ignore that poor attempt at your assumptions of my knowledge of the history of this subject. Lovely story about your grandparents and great grand parents by the way. I mean it’s a false analogy to compare it to how immigration is done today, or how it could be done today, since the laws and socio-economic balance of the world’s countries are completely different, but really it’s a nice story.

      Here’s where you really lost me though. “Do we really need millions of lawn carers, waiters and the like?” I thought to myself, that is possibly the most racist comment I have ever heard, but maybe you were going somewhere with it, maybe it wasn’t as bad as it sounded.” Then you followed up with this comment. “We really need highly-skilled workers. We should be encouraging immigration from Asian countries where students are trained in highly desirable skills. instead, we’re being invaded by landscapers and maids, so we cannot liberalize immigration from other countries whose workers would grow our economy.”

      I then realized I was wrong about two things. First, the former comment was not the most racist thing I had ever heard, the latter was. Second, you weren’t going anywhere with it, except to dive ever deeper into your pool of disgusting hatred.

      Then you just get dumber from there. I didn’t think it was possible, but by this point I had learned to not under estimate your ability to sink lower. Take a course in macro economics and you’ll understand why benefits is not an issue. Take a course in microeconomics and you understand that welfare is already fully funded and will remain so for the next 75 years, even if we don’t collect another dime in taxes. Read any current economic assessment in the past four years and you will understand that we are actually headed for surplus before President Obama leaves office and that the debt has been getting lower for the past 2 years. What looming economic iceberg? Do you mean the one we already collided with under the previous administration? Because we’re kind of past that.

      “Adding 10 million more benefit suckers is just going to hasten the collapse.”

      Oh you mean the iceberg you just made up in your head to justify your blatant racism, that one? Congratulations, you’re part of the problem. Your parents must be so proud.

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  2. […] Source: The Way Forward […]

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