Illegal Immigration Paper Essay

The Statue of Liberty, a symbol of freedom to many, is engraved with the famous poem, “New Colossus”, by Emma Lazarus. It reads, “… give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to be free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door! ” Our country embraces diversity, yet one of the most controversial and debated topics in the United States is immigration. The founders of the United States were immigrants themselves, heroes that believed in equality and acceptance for all people.

Immigration has and will always be a vital part of our nation’s diversity, economic stability, and rich culture. Although, in a post 9-11 world, should security trump diversity? Should we have to choose between being safe and being amiable? Currently we have one of the most relaxed systems of legal immigration in the world, letting in more immigrants than most other countries (Bowman). Much of our expansive border is unguarded, leaving us vulnerable to attack. Its opponents present illegal immigration as a grave danger to the American way of life, while its supporters tout it as an opportunity for cultural diversity.

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The first modern immigration law, the Immigration Reform and Control Act, was passed in 1986. IRCA made it illegal to knowingly hire, or recruit, undocumented immigrants (immigrants who do not possess lawful work authorization)(Pawlick). It also required employers to attest to their employees’ immigration status, and granted amnesty to undocumented immigrants who entered the United States before January 1, 1982 and had resided here for a long period (Pawlick). Year after year millions of illegal immigrants penetrate U. S. borders and settle in the larger cities seeking opportunities of employment.

Many do not pay taxes on their low wages, contributing little to the benefits they enjoy, such as Welfare, schools, and hospitals (Bowman). Throughout 19th century, when the first waves of immigrants came to the United States, many Americans disliked the fact that the new inhabitants took local jobs at extremely low wages. Since then Americans have been promoting limits on legal immigration (Bowman). The government issued new quotas (in 1882, 1921, and 1924), which restrict the ratio of immigrants to citizens. Since the last quota in 1924, there have been many reform attempts at the immigration policy.

Current estimates show that approximately 12 million illegal immigrants currently reside within the United States, with an additional 1 million arriving each year (Pawlick). Recently, due to a surge in violence along the border, Congress authorized the deployment of over 6,000 National Guard troops along the Mexico-U. S. border. They were sent to assist in the fortification of the border and in the capture and arrest of illegal immigrants (Update: U. S. -Mexico). Within several months of deployment, the number of arrests made by the U. S. border patrol dropped by about 30%.

Since its proposal in 2004, president Bush has supported his “guest worker” program, which would allow a special status for temporary amnesty, while working in the U. S. , but requiring them to return home after a period of time (Update: U. S. -Mexico). Congress finally accepted Bush’s idea as a provision in the Senate’s 2007 immigration bill, the Economic Opportunity and Immigration Reform Act (S 1348), which passed. It provides border security funding and includes a guest worker program which allowed illegal immigrants that had been in the U. S. etween 2 and 5 years would be given the opportunity to get “guest worker” status and those who had been here for longer than 5 years got eligibility for citizenship, after a long waiting period (up to 11 years) (Update: U. S. -Mexico). The clashes within the federal government are halting the security of our country. We must decide, unilaterally, on the best way to solve the issues surrounding illegal immigration. Immigration is necessary for a country’s diversity and economy. The new people provide an infusion of cultural understanding, bolster the labor force, and help create the unique land of the United States of America.

The United States is a major attraction for those seeking employment. We have a myriad of available jobs, especially in the services and agricultural sectors and it is widely accepted that immigrants play an important role in those economic sectors especially (Update: Immigration). Approximately 12 million immigrants enter the United States illegally with an estimated 1 million more each year, many of them looking for such opportunities (Pawlick). These 12 million live in oppression, fearing daily of being deported.

They cannot get those well paying, legitimate jobs and are forced to work for next-to-nothing, some even turning to crime. A simple solution would be to grant amnesty to all of these people, allowing them to stay in our country, and work within our system instead of against it. In documenting these people, we also help the fight against terrorism and crime by eliminating the need for illegal immigrants to obtain falsified identification. They can be properly processed and legalized and more of the federal and local government’s resources can be spent on catching actual criminals.

The recent bolstering of the U. S. -Mexico border is seen as ineffective and unwarranted. Although strict detaining and deporting immigrants may be effective in the short-term, it does not resolve the issue completely. The push-pull factor (the poverty and politics pushes them out of their homelands while prosperity and promised freedom pulls them to the U. S. ) is so great that immigrants will attempt to overcome any obstacle. Controlling illegal immigration through border enforcement alone will never be enough to eliminate illegal border crossing, so long as there are vacant American jobs to fill.

If we allow more immigrants to enter legally, and without prejudice, then it would be apparent that those crossing the border illegally are most likely up to no good. There is no doubt that immigration is vital to the United States. Immigrants provide a well-balanced labor force, enrich our country with culture, and diversify our population. It seems that anyone would want an abundance of immigrants, but we don’t we look at all the bad things that seem to come with immigration, poverty, crime, and economic strain. Today, an even more serious threat is presented with lax immigration policy, terrorism.

In allowing immigrants to cross our borders unchecked, we run the risk of letting terrorists in to our country. Some say that we must secure the borders, cut down on legal immigration, and abolish illegal immigration completely, that we must do whatever it takes to stop terrorists from entering the country (Update: Immigration). Others say that we should allow a more open policy, help the poverty-stricken people that seek our land of opportunity, while still policing the immigrants for potential threats. Personally, I feel very ambivalent over immigration reform, contrary to my previous belief of closing the borders.

The allure of the United States of America and its liberty is so great that people will risk their lives to expirience it. My ancestors came here in the early 20th century, seeking economic prosperity and political freedom, most of today’s immigrants are doing the same. Should we deny the freedom for defense, and would we deny our own rights for a promise of security? Works Cited Bowman, Jeffrey. “Counterpoint End Illegal Immigration Now. ” Points of View: Immigration Restrictions. 2007. Points of View Reference Center. EBSCOhost. CHS LMC. 14 March 2008 . “A Closer Look at the U. S. ’s Stance on Legal Immigration. Issues and Controversies On File 23 March 2007. Issues and Controversies. Facts On File News Services. CHS LMC. 11 March 2008 . Pawlick, Peter. “Point: Amnesty is a Practical and Just Solution. ” Points of View : Immigration Restrictions. 2007. Points of View Reference Center. EBSCOhost. CHS LMC. 14 March 2008 . “Update: Immigration. ” Issues and Controversies On File. 3 March 2007. Issues and Controversies. Facts on File News Services. CHS LMC. 11 March 2008 . “Update: U. S. -Mexico Border Enforcement. ” 3 March 2007. Issues and Controversies . Facts On File News Services. CHS LMC. 11 March 2008.

Illegal Immigration example Essay


The problems created by waves of illegal immigrants leaving Haiti for the Bahamas are very real. Every succeeding year sees an increase in the amount of those caught while trying to get into the Bahamas. Coming from a life of poverty and despair would cause anyone to search for a better life, a life in which there is a belief that all things are possible. This is the belief Haitians have about the Bahamas. (more…)

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Illegal immigration Essay

For the past years there has been a constant struggle and pressure being placed on the government to enforce harsher immigration laws and punishments on those who disobey them. Both republicans and democrats have certain views on it but nobody wants to do anything about it. Almost every day there are news reports on current political issues and exceptions on the fact that even though security has been increased, till this day the number of illegal immigrants living in this country keeps rising.

Although most Americans seem to agree on the fact that they don’t want these so called “criminals” to reside on U. S. Territory the political issues don’t seem to give them the benefit of the doubt in understanding the whole reasoning behind illegal immigration. As a start in my research, my first interest was how many undocumented immigrants does the U. S. Hold and from what primary countries?. Although it is hard to be certain, Roy Germane estimates that the United States holds roughly about 11 to 12 million undocumented individuals, whom make up about 3. % of the U. S. Population and come from all over the world but classifying the top three locations as Mexico, Central America and Asia (Germane). Mexicans makes up about 59% of the 11-12 million individuals while Asians and those from countries in Central America such as Honduras, Nicaragua, etc. Each make up about 11% of that population. Just because these are the dominant numbers, we still posses a large number of immigrants from South America, Europe and the Middle East (Germane).

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Living in Florida most of the people Vive come across are Latin and without actually researching it would have never came to my mind that when compared to the number of Asians it would actually be around the same. It also isn’t a coincidence on why these three countries happen to hold the largest numbers. Mexico being located directly below us gives they an easy chance to Just cross the border, Central America holds most of the world’s poorest countries, and Asia (whoso primary country is China) is vastly known for its low wage factories and government influence.

Being someone who was born from two Cuban immigrants, Vive always want to go back and visit the rest of my family and none the less move travel so I was curious as to what drives these individuals to migrate to the U. S. If coming here illegally means they can not move around freely? What persuades most f these individuals to illegally migrate to the U. S. Are family connections and hope for a better life (Masses). The United States is considered one of the most economically and technological advanced nations in the world.

We have a somewhat fair Justice system compared to other nations and a constitution that supports all human rights. Wages in the United States are much higher that in third world countries, and money is a major necessity in life. Countries like Honduras and Nicaragua don’t have a stable government or provide a secure environment, which is one of the reasons why I believe most people, migrate here. They want their kids to grow up somewhere safe that isn’t being threatened by gang members or rebels planning to overthrow the government.

Mexico, on the other hand, does promote a completely fair, democratic government yet Mexicans hold the highest numbers of immigrants which makes you wonder why? Disregarding the obvious fact that their border is right under ours, another reason that cannot be completely proved is the a statement implying that it is a country that is run on bribery and deception, which I have heard from many people. Most importantly, most of these undocumented people want an education for themselves and their kids to be able to be successful life.

Given the circumstances, if I were placed in any of these situations I would do everything I needed to do in order to get out. Furthermore, those who are not educated on the subject might wonder what is the big deal? Who cares if people fro foreign countries want to live here and why is it a crime? Well the simple answer to that, is all about money. Since Illegal immigrants cannot hold a legal Job, they find a way to hold an illegal Job and since they are not paying back taxes it creates a large deficit for the United Sates (Camelot).

The fiscal policy is the way by which the government adjusts its levels of spending in order to monitor and influence our nations economy. Basically if the government is using x amount of money on public expenses it expects x amount of money back in order to maintain a steady economy. Illegal immigrants come to the U. S. And enroll their children in schools, receive most benefits and work hard but do not rein burst the money that they were indirectly given back into the nations economy, creating an unsteady debt which is what stimulates the argument that their residence here steals from “true Americans”.

Ever wonder why someone who illegally enters the country is granted residency if they win the lotto or why Shakier is allowed to live in Miami if she was born in Colombia? Well as previously stated the answer is money. Since the lotto or fortune declares that you are not a financial burden to the United States the status of your residency is granted. Once again, given the certain circumstances, if I was a Governor or President and my Job was to protect my country I can understand why this would be problematic.

Since there is a great variation of countries and age groups in which grate to the U. S. , the next question I explored was whether or not the same rules on immigration status apply to all? The answer is no. Starting off with countries, presented by the Wet feet, Dry feet policy, Cubans are the only immigrants that are allowed to remain in the United States if they touch American soil due to the fact that they are fleeing for asylum because Cuba is run by a dictatorship (“US Immigration support”).

This means that if any individual not from a Cuban background is caught already on U. S. Soil or commits a crime they are detained and furthermore deported. What the United States fails to recognize on this matter is that although a country is not being run by a dictatorship it doesn’t mean that they do not live under the same circumstances. Not only is the law bias by country of birth, it is also bias by state. According to Arizona SUB 1070, all immigrants in Arizona are required to travel with the specified 4 proofs of documentation everywhere they go (“CNN”).

What this bill gives rise to is the right for any police officer to ask anyone whom they detain for a crime or traffic violation and suspect of not being a natural born citizen to show pro of their immigration status. If the individual is a legal immigrant and by some coincidence did not carry their 4 proofs of documentation with them on that day the are fined depending on how many offenses they have, but if the individual does not posses their 4 proofs of documentation and is in fact an illegal immigrant they are arrested and consequences are applied.

All in all, my opinion in what this bill does open the door for racial profiling because the basis of asking someone to show their proof of documentation is solely based on looks. Since California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas are the countries closest to the Mexican border this bill is guised to be for a noble purpose when in fact it is Just that states way in trying t deport its illegal immigrants. When it comes to age groups, the government does no care if you were a minor when your parents crossed the border, any day you spend on U. S. Territory after the day you turn 18 is considered a crime against the government.

Hunger, crime, and political instability are matters that are spread all over third world countries and it is not necessarily fair that as a superior country we sit in our air conditioned homes not knowing what others go through. I understand hat we can’t Just open our gates up to everyone, but I do think our view should be more than one sided. Basically, the most significant question is if in fact there are ways to migrate to the U. S. Legally, why do these people put themselves in the middle of this big issue? Or why can’t they Just be patient and follow our laws in coming to the United States legally?

Well the problem with that is that it is a lengthy process that doesn’t even promise you an acceptance (McGregor). U. S. Citizenship is the end of a very long road, the final reward for legal immigrants (Green card holders) who eave lived many years as lawful permanent residents in the U. S. They need to prove “good moral character,” provide income tax returns, meet residency requirements and pass an English and civics test. Getting there takes many years, many immigration steps and interviews, and many thousands of dollars in fees alone. In order to get an immigrant visa to the U.

S. , the foreigner needs to be the close relative (child, parent, or spouse) of a U. S. Citizen, a multi-millionaire investor, or an exclusive professional with a doctorate degree and international recognition. Only such people can immigrate to the U. S. Period. One way around this is a work visa (which is a non immigrant visa), the foreigner needs to have at least some academic degree and needs to be petitioned by a U. S. Company or government. When being petitioned b a company, the specific company has to show prove that nobody among the millions of unemployed people in the U.

S. Can do what the individual they want, can do. It involves labor certification and high costs for the company. Any random person picking strawberries in the plantation does not qualify. Another example is a visitor visa, In order to obtain one, (which also is a non-immigrant visa), the foreigner need o prove that he will return to his home country once the vacation is over. What they want to see is owner ship of real estate, a government Job, plenty of money in the bank, and family ties. As you can see, there is no line or witless for people who wan to come to the U.

S. An architect, attorney or doctor from Finland, England, Italy or France has a rare chance in acquiring permanent residency then you can see what little of hope there is for a family of 4 suffering from poverty. In conclusion when being asked why the United States contains such a large portion of immigrants on a yearly basis, this is the main reasoning why. Due to its complexity level, the exceptions of some and the number of immigrants who cheat the system everyday finding a solution to this problem anytime soon is highly unlikely.

On a yearly basis individuals who in the long run hold a Job and a family here, if caught, can be sent back to the country from which they originated from and separating them from their family. One thing I did learn throughout my research process is a clear view on both sides of the issue, while I do agree that an economical balance needs to be kept I do believe that this issue needs to be resolved into a situation that can benefit both arties and make it easier for individuals to uphold their residency or citizenship.

Illegal immigration Essay

            Illegal immigration is a sensitive topic, and it is even more sensitive in American society since the country had prided itself as a haven for diversity. Most people are passionate about their opinions and ideas about illegal immigrants and how they have affected the economic, political and social landscape of American society. Most studies have reported that illegal immigration had been growing steadily although how this studies came up with their figures remain to be dubious. A review of the methods used in analyzing illegal immigration numbers (Briggs, 1984) concluded that determining the number of illegal immigrants in the country is an exact science. Several methods had been espoused, data collection strategies had been experimented with one after the other but the results always came up short. However, depending on the research goals of the researcher, it is possible to measure the perceptions and ideas of illegal immigrants. (more…)

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