Do Illegal Immigrants Hurt the Economy?
Illegal immigration is a big issue in our country. It is an ongoing debate that is never ending to our country’s history. Many people have different opinions on the matter. There are different communities that have a positive outlook on it, and there are others that really have a negative point of view. I have always been interested in immigration issues and how it affects the country. I want to focus on one specific issue: do illegal immigrants have a positive or negative effect on the economy? To get a better understanding and have more knowledge about it, I will be getting different perspectives.
I will be using four internet articles that show different perspectives on what the authors have researched and what the people think about it. I will also interview my mom. She is a perfect candidate because she was an illegal immigrant in the past. I will also interview my step dad because he has a strong opinion about the issue. He was born here and I got a very surprising input from him. Looking at different perspective is very beneficial and lets people see different sides of stories. It can lead to a lot of controversy but can be very helpful at times.
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The first piece of evidence I would like to share is one that agrees with illegal immigration being a positive factor for our economy. This information comes from The New York Times: The Newsmagazine for Teens. It states that “A 2006 study by the Texas State Comptroller estimated that the 1. 4 million undocumented immigrants in Texas alone added almost $18 billion to the state’s economic output” (Ewing). This shows how illegal immigrants put in as much money into the state as legal workers. These immigrants also pay taxes on their homes, clothes, groceries, outings, and vehicles they purchase.
Some people imagine how it would be if the illegal immigrants could be legal automatically, how the economy would boost. For example Walker Ewing states “The contributions of documented immigrants would be even greater if they were able to earn legal status. Immigrants come to try and establish a new life and to help better themselves and provide for their family. Many come looking for any job they can do to get whatever money they can get. As my mother points out, “In my opinion there are so many jobs that they will do to help even for cheap labor” (Flores).
Those were the words of my mom that was once an illegal immigrant. She also was one that was looking for a better opportunity to provide for her child. Immigrants are attracted to the resources and many opportunities they can have being here in this country. My mother also pointed out that “there are also immigrants to contribute by paying property taxes and sales taxes. ” She is a very opinionated person on this issue because she has been through it and believes that not all illegal immigrants mean harm to the country or economy.
On the contrary, she knows that there are also some illegal immigrants that come here for the wrong reason, either for selling drugs or committing crimes, but she sees most of them come for a better life as we have it ourselves in our country. Illegal immigrants seem to maybe look up to our country and want to earn these privileges. Americans sometimes are not satisfied with the low paying jobs. That causes the companies to struggle with hiring workers and getting money to make their company successful.
As Eleanor Jewell stated in her article named “How Does Illegal Immigration Hurt the Economy”, allowing these positions to be filled by ready and willing illegal immigrants reduces the burden and increases productivity. ” Some companies choose to hire immigrants because they know they will work for any wage. Of course companies benefit from them because they have good hard working workers and they don’t have to pay them much to do their work. They will make more money and more jobs can make higher wages because of the increasing number of business and productivity.
Not only does Jewell explain the positive side, but she also has reason why immigration impacts the economy negatively. There is a lot of negative economic impacts immigrations cause. Many people feel threatened by them and feel like they are taking Americans’ job. As Jewell points out, “Those who lack high school diploma and teenagers looking for summer jobs positions are finding it difficult to acquire employment due to competition from illegal immigrants. ” It’s hard for Americans or teenagers to find jobs since they are already taken. Americans think it is not right and that’s when it becomes a problem for a lot of them.
Being a natural born American, I wanted to interview my step dad about this issue. He always had strong opinions about illegal immigration and how he agrees it should be hard for people to come here. It was not expected from me to hear he was actually on the positive side of the perspective. He respects how people come here and try to make money and get good opportunities. “They are hard workers because they know they are getting a good opportunity”, he stated (Jancaric). Hard workers are always needed in this country, and it is beneficial for both the companies and economy.
My step dad also stated “You know they also help the economy by spending money on food, clothing etc. ” Just how Americans help the economy by spending, immigrants do the same. Throughout the years there have been an increasing number of illegal immigrants coming to the country and of course many people have problems with it and how it effects the economy in a bad way. Of course there are two sides, so in The New York Times: The Newsmagazine for Teens writer Mark Krikorian had a strong negative opinion about it. Immigrants sometimes don’t have much education when they arrive.
Most of them don’t even speak English. According to Krikorian, “Almost 60 percent of adult immigrants lack a high school education. ” Since they have little education they don’t earn much money, so they pay little taxes. Adam Davidson, who wrote “Illegal immigrants and the U. S Economy” also stated “Since undocumented workers generally don’t pay income taxes but do use school and other government services they are draining government spending. ” Some Americans think that immigrants just take advantage and use the government and that is why they hurt the economy.
As Nancy Parker explains in “Commentator: Illegal Immigration Hurts the Economy”, Immigrants affect the economic cost. Yes, some have welfare and other government services, but do they have too much? So many immigrants sometimes don’t pay taxes. “Yet they’re still using free health care, food stamps and other services meant for low income and senior citizens”(Parker). Whenever the immigrants buy things or resources from the country, they send it off to their relatives in their own countries. “It’s a drain of resources that doesn’t do anything for economic growth” (Parker).
Immigration is a very powerful subject for our country. There are some good positive points but also some negative. Different communities can agree on one side of the perspective or the other. One person may have a positive and a negative opinion about it. It’s just a never ending debate and nobody will ever come to an agreement. Having different perspectives can be controversial, but at the end they are very helpful. Gathering all this information helps me be more knowledgeable about this issue and see how different communities think.