It isn’t all that difficult to figure out the motivation of various “groups” when it comes to their position on immigration. They follow the time-honored practice of self-interest. I do not disagree. After all, I am the Rugged Individualist. I rely on my self-interest.
My support for immigration largely stems from the fact that my Father was an immigrant from Sicily and became an American citizen with great pride. He would tell his children frequently of that pride and “Americanized” us. For example, my brother and I were never taught the Italian language. We were expected to speak English at all times – and with correct grammar (not that my parents knew “correct” grammar).
My misgivings about immigration arise from the fact that more recent immigrants do not support this philosophy. Multiculturalism, another of these “nice-sounding-disasterous-policies” supported by progressive/statist/altruists, is not what the “melting pot” was about.
[Source: Elites can Afford to Support Looser Immigration Policies, by Victor Davis Hanson]
Let us examine “support” for immigration with the help of Victor Davis Hanson.
Mexico doesn’t want a “wall.” They do not like Donald Trump who intends to build the “wall” and make Mexico pay for it. Illegal Mexican immigrants remit an estimated $25 billion to Mexico each year. This amount represents Mexico’s primary source of foreign exchange. That may come as a bit of a surprise. It also excuses the Mexican government from restructuring its economy or budgeting for anti-poverty programs. Their poor are “induced” to cross our border and seek employment.
American employers in certain industrial sectors — construction, manufacturing, hospitality and others — have long favored illegal immigration. Low-wage labor cuts costs and the larger the pool of undocumented immigrants, the less pressure to raise wages. Moreover, the additional social expense associated with millions of undocumented workers is not born by the employers, but by you and me through our taxes. So you provide the “benefits” like health care, not the employer.
Limousine liberals also support illegal immigration. “Undocumented workers” provide low-cost services for their homes. As well, limousine liberals can afford not to send their children to schools that suffer from the onslaught of non-english speaking illegals.
You may be surprised as well to learn that Cesar Chavez was opposed to illegal immigration – he now has his own US holiday. President Barack Obama proclaimed March 31 as Cesar Chavez Day in the United States. Chavez’s United Farm Workers in the 1970s patrolled the southern border in its vigilante-style “illegals campaign” to keep out undocumented immigrants while opposing guest worker programs. Self interest is the one thing you can always count on in a human being.
Activists on the left favor illegal immigration. While legal immigrants typically continue to integrate the US populace, illegal immigrants, particularly when present in large numbers and without ethnic diversity, tend not to assimilate. This creates a near-permanent pool of undocumented persons for whom political activists can provide collective representation.
[From the Davis article] If the borders were closed to illegal immigration, then being Hispanic would soon be analogous to being Italian-, Greek- or Portuguese-American in terms of having little prognostic value in predicting one’s political outlook. The continual flow of indigent new arrivals distorts statistics on poverty and parity, prompting ethnic elites in politics, journalism and higher education to seek redress for perennial income and cultural imbalances. Offering affirmative action to a third-generation Hispanic-American who does not speak Spanish apparently is seen as one way to help thousands of recently arrived impoverished immigrants from Oaxaca, Mexico, find parity.
High-income American elites likewise have largely favored illegal immigration for a variety of predictable reasons. The professional class likes having low-wage “help” to clean the house, cook meals, help take care of kids and elders, and tend the lawn. Such outsourcing usually is not affordable for the middle and lower classes.
Who does not benefit from mass illegal immigration? Mostly the poor, minorities and the lower-middle class. They are not employers, but rather compete with undocumented immigrants for low-wage jobs. They usually clean their own houses and do their own yard work. They cannot afford to send their children to a different school when theirs becomes overcrowded. They cannot afford the increased taxes needed for social support of millions of new arrivals.
The issue of legal immigration is complex. But the issue of illegal immigration is not. We should never tolerate illegal immigration. Build the wall! Those who say a “wall will not work” have not been to Israel.