Immigration has a very large effect on America and should not be reduced, but controlled. Millions of illegal immigrants come through the borders annually. Because of this, America is being affected in both positive and negative ways. In 2016 there were 10 to 11 million undocumented immigrants in America. Therefore, when these people arrive to our country they will be an asset to our country in the essence that they will become productive members of society. The more immigrants, the more productivity, the more the economy will grow. On the other hand, there are also some negatives that come with immigration like drug cartels, the expenses America pays for immigrants, and even health issues.
Immigration started on Ellis Island in 1892. Millions of people came to America for new opportunities, new jobs, and a better life. Ellis Island was a place for immigrants from other countries to come and get inspected to be allowed into America. Inspections would include medical exams and legal evaluations. Over 12 million people immigrated here over the span of 62 years from 1892 to 1954. While this was good for them, many of these immigrants brought diseases over such as Trachoma, a highly contagious and difficult to cure eye disease. (“Trachoma”, 2006).
So how does immigration affect America? As stated earlier there were 10 to 11 million undocumented immigrants in America in 2016 which has increased in the following years. All of them do not receive a social security card therefore in order to pay taxes, most must use an outdated social security card. In 2016, roughly 11 billion dollars in taxes were paid by undocumented immigrants. Some undocumented immigrants get paid “under the table” so they do not have to pay taxes. (“How Do Undocumented Immigrants Pay Federal Taxes? An Explainer”, 2018). While taxes can be a pain for some, they are a very important part of our country because they go towards education, technology, and helping sustain the government along with many other things.
The majority of immigrants who come to this country are of childbearing age and come from cultures where large families are common and while our population has a drop in our growth rate, these immigrants contribute to that rate. They also contribute by paying taxes for social security and medicare, which in turn provides for the elderly in our country. It is also assumed that these same people will take jobs in healthcare that will provide care for the elderly. In order for us to be better off economically we would need more workers, more consumers and more productivity. While other countries are facing a shorter amount of workers, America is flourishing with them because of our high immigration rate.
Our 45th president Donald Trump has done many things to help the amount of immigrants coming into America decrease. He has promised a border wall and increased border control. On the other hand, while our 44th president Barack Obama was in office, he deported 2.4 million immigrants. Trump claims he will do the same thing. He has made his main focus immigration. So far, he has deported some illegal immigrants, and started his border wall. This can be ideal because some illegal immigrants can be a threat to our country. Some are refugees running away from their home country to come here.
A negative aspect of immigration is drugs are very frequently brought over the border through drug cartels or simply just sneaking them over and this can be very dangerous to citizens.. This causes overdoses, drugs being sold, addiction, and death. In 2016, Border Patrol seized over 83,000 kilograms of meth, cocaine and other drugs near our San Diego border. President Donald Trump recently said in a State of the Union address “The savage gang MS-13 now operates in almost 20 different American states and they almost all come from our southern border”. MS-13 is a criminal gang that engages in murder, kidnapping, drug trafficking and more. In addition to drug smuggling, people are also trafficked over the border. In 2016 there were over 7,500 reports of human trafficking in the US. (“The deadly toll of human smuggling and trafficking in the US”, 2017)
It may be the opinion of some that immigration can be a drain on our economy, The question becomes who will care for these people and who will be the ones who will pay their way? When we have undocumented immigrants in this country and they come here with no one to care for them or support them and they are here on their own, the American people are the ones who must provide for their basic necessities They may be a drain on the American economy due to the fact that these people will need medical care, food, housing, and education. Therefore there becomes less money for the American people to use for their own college educations and necessities.
Another negative of immigration is the effect on our health. Like previously stated, even in Ellis Island they were checking for the disease Trachoma. In our country we have eradicated many childhood diseases by vaccines given to children at birth. However, when undocumented immigrants come into our country with no correct health screening, it puts our society at risk by introducing new diseases, viruses, parasites and bacteria into our society and can be detrimental to our health because we do not have a resistance to them or an antibiotic to treat them. It also puts a strain on our healthcare system to provide care at no cost to these people. It will cost our country money to treat these people when they are ill.
The cost of deporting people is $6,000 to $11,000 on average. Not even that, but deporting families is tough on the people because they are separated from their families. As stated in the 14th Amendment of the Constitution, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside”. This means all those who are born in America are automatically citizens. When an immigrant has a child and must be deported for whatever reason, they are separated from their family. Also, when people attempt to cross over the Mexico/American border, there are times when they are detained and separated from their families there..
Another reason why immigration has negative effects on America is if people who come over here are less educated they do not get very good jobs and make less wages and have less tax contributions. They take out more than they give in our economy. They are uneducated so they cannot get higher paying jobs, therefore they make minimum wages. They rely on social services to support them and their family. Also, people who make more money put more money into taxes. Those who make minimum wage or less money put less money into taxes. We must pay for their education because whether they are illegal or not, our money goes into taxes, which also goes into public education. Immigrants also receive food stamps. In general, we pay for immigrants which there is nothing wrong with that, but it affects the economy drastically.
Although a lot of points make immigration seem negative, it can also be positive. Many of our advances in health, medicine and other things have come from people who have immigrated to america. For example, Albert Einstein immigrated to America in 1933 and became a U.S citizen in 1940. Immigrants not only help our country but they make up a lot of America. They help America become more advanced in technology, medicine, and even just in population. Immigrants also start businesses. Immigrants are 30% more likely to start a business in the US than non immigrants. (“Ten Ways Immigrants Help Build and Strengthen Our Economy”, 2012)
In conclusion, Immigrants are a vital part of America. In general, most people have wrong ideas of immigrants. They are very beneficial to America. They help improve our country and our economy by paying taxes, helping further our knowledge in medicine and health and man other ways, but they also can have a negative effect on our country by smuggling drugs and bringing over diseases. In the future, our presidents should help control immigrants in the way that they come over here safely, legally, and for the right reasons.