May 21, 2010, Reno the Illegal - Undocumented -Immigrant - Aliens (IUIA) town hall meeting: Wow what a great meeting. Lots of passionate, well-spoken, people with the courtesy to listen to each other and consider other points of view got together to discuss IUIAs and really laid out the problems. Since receiving new information changed my mind, I would like to offer everyone the same experience.
First IUIAs. Just the terms of the discussion are enough to provoke people on this issue. We could distract ourselves with labels and never address the issue, so I invented IUIA which combines the descriptors each side uses into one, hopefully, emotionally neutral acronym so the issue can be discussed.
Second, there were four distinct groups represented. The U.S. taxpayers, the National Socialist Workers' Party, the IUIAs which were divided into two subgroups, the adults and the children they brought with them who are now adults, and some naturalized U.S. citizens
We can eliminate one issue right up front. Security and protection of our national borders and the ease with which criminals, terrorists and people whom we would not want in this country enter was raised but not answered. One person made a passing reference to anti-nationalism but that is not the subject here so I will set it aside for now. One side of the debate made clear and extensive reference to this problem and the opposing side ignored the subject. I, as one who wants to represent both sides, am going to make the assumption that neither side would object to our borders being better protected when discussing IUIAs. Better border security would have prevented the rest of the issues that were brought up, as well as, eventually, making the issue moot. Also I feel it is necessary to state that we as a nation have the right to make decisions that are in our best interest even if they negatively impact other people or nations.
Most issues can be condensed down to economic interest. People can do better for themselves in this country than they can in the countries they come from. IUIAs see immigration as an economic opportunity and are willing to violate our laws to benefit themselves. Obviously it is much easier and of less consequence if caught violating U.S. border security than it would be to violate their home country's laws to promote a re-organization of their government that would then allow them to benefit from their industry at home. So IUIAs are taking the easiest route they can see to prosperity. Big surprise there. We are capitalists, and we do the same thing. We would hardly expect anything different, even from a socialist. A more secure U.S. border would change the equation.
The U.S. borders have been left unguarded. There are two main reasons for this and they are money and power. Businesses that can't afford to relocate to lower wage countries want plentiful cheap labor; believing that it will help their profitability. They of course ignore the fact that they still have competitors limiting the prices they can get for their product. So if everyone has the same labor costs, it really doesn't help to lower wages. Lower waged workers can't buy as much. On the other hand lower wage costs by means of higher productivity allow workers to earn more, and businesses to make more profit than less effective producers. This is why it is generally more profitable to treat employees as assets, and invest in their training, rather than simply as direct costs.
Uneducated people who are only qualified for simple jobs work for less; but, they also will vote for less. Unaware of our history and Constitution, uneducated immigrants are willing to ignore and discard our way of life for fewer trinkets than our own uneducated workers. For the National Socialist Workers Party this is too good an opportunity to pass up. By pushing for a 'shortcut to citizenship' new, easily duped, voters can be had by the millions. The curious fact is that business people who offer the workers jobs are much more closely allied to the IUIAs interest than the government-aid-pushing party. The IUIAs just want to legally join our labor market; they have no interest in destroying the capitalist system that created it. But by forcing citizenship upon them, they then can be co-opted into voting against their own long-term interests.
These twin founts of greed and ignorance have produced a huge social problem for our country. We have no control over who is coming into this country, whether they intend us ill or just wish to build our houses. And they have come in such numbers as to daunt even the most jubilant advocates of government effectiveness and capability. The same people who say government can provide better health-care also state that government can't enforce border security or deal with IUIAs.
So, as someone who wants to represent you, here is a compromise that gives the U.S. taxpayers most of what they want, IUIAs some of what they say they want, the people who actually help the IUIAs some of what they want and the people who want to pervert the democratic process nothing.
First, better border security to stop the problem from becoming worse, and eventually solve the problem. Only the average working citizen wants this, and it is better than constantly dealing with this problem.
Second, create a 'pathway to documentation,' since we already have a 'pathway to citizenship.' By not enforcing the employment laws, IUIAs have been led to assume that there are none. As a result there are millions of people with lives and families here. Some of whom are citizens. And the whole issue is rather messy. Lawful U.S. citizens should incur some advantage to themselves for obeying the law, after all, we are capitalists. IUIAs need a legal status that is less than full citizenship and which will make legal immigrants glad they followed the law. Also, IUIAs must be prevented from being used to influence our elections.
Based upon these principles, I believe a compassionate solution can be crafted that will serve the American citizen and once again make immigrants welcome to our shores.