Immigration in America
The United States has forever been known as the land of the free and the nation of opportunity. The country’s open door policy to those in need continues to reap dividends in areas such as cultural diversity, market expansion, and dominance in the fields of science and engineering. America was shaped by immigrants and is considered to be the melting pot of the world. The landmark that means most to immigrants is the Statue of Liberty located in New York City. America now must come to the realization that immigration as a whole is no longer a positive influence on American culture.
The plaque on the Statue of Liberty for immigrants to read as they reach Ellis Island reads as: "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” ("How Tall is the Statue of Liberty") While these are promising, hopeful words for immigrants to place hope and faith in, they are very often taken for granted. These words have turned into a war against illegal trafficking, a fence about 350 miles long separating Mexico from the United States, and a public outcry against immigrants taking citizen’s jobs.
The highly publicized issue of this generation’s immigrants has dawned on a much larger negative aspect of the friendly, easy-going immigration laws of the United States. Many negative aspects have been brought to the forefront of mainstream media. Issues such as poverty, public assistance, population increase, health care cost, drugs, violence, wage suppression, and immigration reform are all affected by illegal immigration currently in America.
America was built on the backs of immigrants from all nations, but as more and more immigrants flood into the United States more and more problems arise. The U.S. system of government is now being exploited for its lope holes. The financial gap between recent immigrants and native citizen’s is increasing at a pace never seen before. Daily, more and more immigrants are falling under the poverty line and are now accepting government assistance. Since states and local governments pay most welfare benefits, native citizens in states with high levels of immigrants pay more in taxes to help support indigent immigrants. Each year legal citizens face tax hikes to help support these state
Population increase is among the United States’ biggest concerns. The nation is already being pushed to its brink population wise and the incredibly high numbers of immigrants crossing into the U.S. annually is not helping. In March 2010 there were twelve million illegal immigrants in America. One in twenty American workers is an illegal immigrant. (Wikipedia) According to Joseph Chamie, Director of Research at the Center for Migration Studies, the main problem is not the actual number of people immigrating but it is the tendency for immigrants to reproduce far more offspring than native citizens. Chamie predicts the population of the U.S. will reach 439 million by 2050, with immigrants making up 70 percent of the total population increase. The numbers do not lie; America is letting too many people into the country ("Wikipedia").
Everyone has health problems from the youngest of age until the oldest of age and illness, injury, and paint are not limited to any sex, race, or background. In America health insurance is crucial to families and their financial stability. Without health insurance a fair hospital bill can be absurd and ridiculous and to most uninsured American’s impossible to afford. U.S. Census figures show that 34 percent of immigrants lack health insurance, making up 71 percent of the increase in America's total uninsured since 1989 ("Center for Immigration Studies"). The cost of providing health care to uninsured immigrants is passed on to native citizens in higher health care and insurance prices. Basically, native citizens of America are paying for the irresponsibility of this generation’s illegal immigrants.
The drug problem in America is out of control and statistically illegal immigrants and relaxed immigration policies are to blame. The Mexican American border is a super expressway for Cocaine, Methamphetamines, Marijuana, and other illegal drugs. As documented by recent media reports border towns such as Juarez, Mexico have been overrun with drug smugglers and cartels. These cartels are using ruthless tactics to gain control over local authorities and law enforcement. Murder, kidnapping, and corruption run ramped along the U.S. Mexico border. The network of drug trade resembles a large expansive tree. The roots the foundation of the network begin in Mexico and through transport by illegal immigrants the drugs work their way to Phoenix, Tucson, Houston, and Dallas and from there are spread to major cities such as Denver, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Chicago, and New York. A more restricted flow of immigrants from Mexico and Central America would help cut the drug smuggling greatly.
In the last five years the statement “They’re taking our jobs” has been that of a public outcry. The concern of American citizen’s is that illegal immigrants who are willing to take lower wages for strenuous work are suppressing wages around the country. These immigrants set a precedent for employers where the illegal immigrant worker becomes a top priority because of it is easy to save money when you don’t have to pay workers a high wage. The downward pressure on wages is getting so extreme that illegal immigrants are being targeted for jobs on farms, golf courses, and maintenance positions within businesses. It is truly unfair to the ignorant worker and the American citizen. The American government needs to step up and ensure that legal documented citizen get first priority in employment.
Immigration has a huge place in America and in no way should all immigration be outlawed. Immigrant’s willing work and do their part as Americans are welcome but immigrants looking to leach off of America’s generosity should be forced out or never allowed in, in the first place. Every nation has citizens willing to work hard and pursue a better life for their families. America provides people like this a chance to start over. The immigrants that saw the statue of liberty as their first sign of America knew that seeing Lady Liberty meant having a chance at a new life, financial stability, and happiness. Immigrants deserve a chance at life, liberty, and happiness but if they are not willing to contribute to American society positively they should be deported.
The last two presidential elections have been swayed by the issue of immigration. Politicians realize the importance of the issues and have made it clear in their pre and post-election agendas that fixing the problems with immigration is clearly an important issue. A line needs to be drawn in the sand to let American citizens know that they are first priority. The American government needs come together to formulate an immigration policy that is has no grey areas that citizens and immigrants can see cut and dry. Immigration is having a huge effect negatively on American society and the American economy. Wavering back and forth about a plan of action does no good for citizens and immigrants.