Should United States Immigration Policy Be Changed? Essay
Lawrence H. F. & John C. “Should United States Immigration Policy Be Changed?”, AEI Press, 1980.
Lawrence & John thoroughly go through the immigration policy of US in their article. Immigration to the United States of America is the movement of non-residents to the United States (Robert, 2006). Authors comment that the immigration of people to the land has been the major reason of population growth and cultural change in United States even though foreign born population always constitutes less than 15 percent of the total US population, since its 1675 (the beginning of the immigration period).
According to the authors, immigration has always been a problem and cause of debate throughout the American history. The social, economic, political and economic aspects of immigration has initiated numerous controversies, problems and debates about race, ethnicity, religion, economic benefits, settlement patterns, housing variations, job growth, impact on upward social mobility, nationalities, political loyalties, levels of criminality, moral values, work habits and several other issues. Lawrence and John (1980) say that immigration is a topic that the whole America is interested in.
Even though traditionally, economic arguments and other social and political issues dominated the United States immigration debate, the recent arguments, demands and conflicts are highly polarized by various factors like the nationalist demands for the militarization of the US borders and other demands. Numerous arguments have crept into the political and social arena that compels United States to review it immigration policy.
Krikorian, Mark. “Safety through Immigration Control”, The Providence Journal, 2004.
Mark Krikorian, in his article ‘Safety through Immigration Control’ (The Providence Journal, 2004) says that America can never attain complete peace and safety unless they bring immigration control. Mark Krikorian says that America can never attain complete peace and safety unless they bring immigration control. In order to analyze what Krikorian, suggests in his article, it is necessary to study the advantages and disadvantages of immigration in United States. Immigration to the United States of America is the movement of non-residents to the United States. This immigration of people to the land has been the major reason of population growth and cultural change in United States even though foreign born population always constitutes less than 15 percent of the total US population, since its 1675 (the beginning of the immigration period) . However, Krikorian’s article says that immigration has always been a problem and cause of debate throughout the American history. It is a know fact that the social, economic, political and economic aspects of immigration has initiated numerous controversies, problems and debates about race, ethnicity, religion, economic benefits, settlement patterns, housing variations, job growth, impact on upward social mobility, nationalities, political loyalties, levels of criminality, moral values, work habits and several other issues. Krikorian points to the security of the nation as he says that immigration control is necessary for the safety of the nation. United States should adopt a strict and less flexible immigration policy (Krikorian, 2004). The author considers this issue important enough to write as immigration has become one of the most controversial topics of the current America. This immigration of people to the land has been the major reason of population growth and cultural change in United States even though foreign born population always constitutes less than 15 percent of the total US population, since its 1675 (the beginning of the immigration period) (Bush, 2004). Immigration has always been a problem and cause of debate throughout the American history. Krikorian (2004) recognized the seriousness of the issue of immigration and expressed his points through the article. Krikorian (2004) considers the American public and the government as his audience. He is on typical stand on the issue of immigration and attempts to convince the readers about the usefulness of immigration control. Krikorian clearly explain his stand in the topic of immigration and says that America can never attain complete peace and safety unless they bring immigration control. He introduces several arguments, facts and examples to prove the issue to his audience, the American public (as well as the government).
Even though traditionally, economic arguments and other social and political issues dominated the United States immigration debate, the recent arguments, demands and conflicts are highly polarized by various factors like the nationalist demands for the militarization of the US borders and other demands (Krikorian, 2004). For example, the emergence of private border militias in the United States has attracted much media attention. Nevertheless, the southern border of the European Union in the Spanish exclaves of Ceuta and Melilla is at least as militarized as the US-Mexico border. Similarly various other topics also have crept in the political and social arena that compels United States to review it immigration policy. Krikorian makes a good attempt to educate the reader about the safety issues as he says that “the burden of homeland defense is not borne by our armed forces but by agencies seen as civilian entities — mainly, the Department of Homeland Security. And of the DHS’s many responsibilities, immigration control is central”.
Krikorian attempts to convince the readers that the security departments are not aware about the importance of immigration control in keeping the nation safe and peaceful. He criticizes the security department as he says that “our great power leaves these enemies with few conventional options for doing us harm. One such option is to take advantage of our freedom and openness by secretly inserting terrorists into our country to attack our homeland. Homeland security seeks to deny this avenue of attack to our enemies and thus to provide a secure foundation for America’s global engagement”. He emphasizes the importance of immigration control and says that no matter the weapon or delivery system — hijacked airliners, shipping containers, suitcase nukes, anthrax spores, terrorists are needed to carry out the attacks. He says that there will not be any threat to the nation security if the terrorists are not allowed to enter the nation. Krikorian convinces that immigration is the open door that welcomes the terrorist to US.
Krikorian’s arguments are supported by various other facts. For example, the Center of Immigration Studies (CIS) has come up with the information that many violent crimes in the United States are committed by illegal immigrants (Krikorian, 2004). The institute Krikorian argues that increasing border security reduces the proportion of illegal immigrants caught at the border and increases the length of time illegal immigrants remain in the country. Because of the immigration status of the criminals, law enforcement officials are mostly not able to properly track and find many of them as they withdraw back over the border where they are often untraceable or not extraditable. Studies have come with the point that approximately one million sex crimes were committed by illegal immigrants in the period between 1999 and 2006; and US residents being the victims of 70 percent of the cases. Many criminal elements illegally enter the United States, mainly narcotic-traffickers and members of the street gang MS-13. Department of Homeland Security officials have stated that “…illegal immigration threatens our communities and our national security.” In fact, one of the main points of the illegal immigration controversy involves an increasing number of US citizens calling for increased border security (with the main idea being to reduce illegal immigration) (Krikorian, 2004). Some critics of border security suggest that their opponents are ignoring larger [insolvable] issues of wealth disparity, flaws in the immigration process, or other systematic issues which may have given rise to such a large influx of illegal immigrants, instead offering a band-aid solution (Krikorian, 2004). Some argue that increasing border security is counterproductive. All these uphold the suggestion of Krikorian to ensure safety by bringing immigration control. He thus succeeded in proving that America can never attain complete peace and safety unless they bring immigration control
Krikorian explains that the increasing troubles, controversies, population increase, racial, ethnic problems, work related issues, the border control issues and several other problems have demand change in the immigration policy so that immigration should be more limited (Krikorian, 2004). Krikorian’s thoughts bring out several dangerous aspects of immigration. According to him, one of the negative consequences of illegal immigration to the United States is that many undocumented workers search for and engage in work with no legal sanction. Sometimes they do enter into the country legally with a visa, and then simply decide not to leave upon expiration of the visa. There are also case when these workers enter the country surreptitiously without ever obtaining a visa. It is true that United States has laws requiring workers to have proper documentation, which is for preventing the employment of illegal immigrants. However the penalties against these illegal intruding is not always enforced consistently and fairly, which means that employers can easily use illegal labor. Krikorian, the supporter of ‘immigration limiting’ says that instead of making problems by offering jobs to these illegal workers, United States can reduce immigration and can provide jobs for the natives.
Sampson, Robert. “Open Doors Don’t Invite Criminals”, New York Times (Op-Ed), March 11, 2006.
Robert (2006) has however come up with an opposite argument as he says that ‘Open Doors Don’t Invite Criminals’. He turns the attention of the readers to the advantages of immigration. Robert says that immigration is not the source through which criminals enter the nation. He instead emphasizes that non-residents are a major part of the work force of United States (Robert, 2006). It is true that immigration has influenced United States in several positive ways and has also been a boon to a big group of non-residents for whom their new land is a land of opportunities and prosperity. It also looks least practical to bring significant changes to the immigration that United States has been following all these years. Robert says that it is not completely true that immigration is the complete cause of national security. The problems caused by the immigrated people are found to be trivial compared to the other security problems (Robert, 2006).
Harris, David. “The Reality of Racial Disparity in Criminal Justice: The Significance of Data Collection.” Law and Contemporary Problems 66 (3), 2003.
David (2003) also says that immigrants are not really the trouble makers in America. According to him, immigrants are suffering in the nation as they are subjected to discrimination and segregation. Immigration has helped several minority groups and other ill-privileged non-residents to come up to the world of prosperity and fame. Immigration has helped United States greatly in becoming what it is now. United States would never be the same if it has a strict and less flexible immigration policy. Non-residents are a major part of the work force of United States. Several big offices and posts constitute non-residents.
Barry Leonard, Guide to Naturalization, DIANE Publishing, 1998.
Leonard, 1998 explain the entire naturalization process in his book. Naturalization can the explained as the legal process that helps the foreign citizen (or national) to become a citizen of a new nation. In United States also, people need to follow the naturalization processes to acquire citizenship. In order to apply for US citizenship, the applicant must have some specific qualifications (application criteria). They need to complete the application, pass through an interview and should pass in an English and civic test. After completing all this, the applicant must take a loyalty oath that would finally make him/her a US citizen. These strict legal requirements ensure that only those who qualify would acquire the citizenship. Citizenship is a lifetime benefit that would help a person enjoys all the rights offered by the US constitution.
According to Leonard, 1998, in order to become eligible for applying for US citizenship, the applicant should be at least eighteen years old. He/she must have maintained good moral character and must be a lawful permanent resident of the United States. Apart from this, the applicant should have completed five years permanent stay in United States at the time of application. These rules are specified by The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Applicants must complete the Form N-400; submit two photographs that meet immigration service requirements; submit the necessary documents; and should submit the application with the required fee (application fee ($320) and biometric fee ($70)) to the concerned Service Center. The process of applying for citizenship is quite easy and straight-forward in United States. Unlimited number of citizenships is approved every year. After the application process, the applicant must be fingerprinted.
He/she should receive the appointment letter from the USCIS; obtain fingerprints from the fingerprint location; and should submit all the necessary documents. This would ensure that no spurious or fraud application is being processed at the USCIS. Fingerprinting is not needed for applicants who are above seventy five years of age. After the fingerprint process, the applicant needs to be interviewed and tested. He/she must collect the appointment for your interview; reach the local office at the right time with the identification documents; respond to all the enquiries about their application and background, complete the English and civics tests; and should receive the decision. After completing the interview the immigration applicant should take the oath of allegiance as the final step of the naturalization process. In the oath taking process, the applicant should receive a ceremony date; participate in the ceremony, return your permanent resident card, respond to the questions about what you have been doing since your interview; and lastly take the oath of allegiance.
As per the guidance in Leonard, 1998, the documents that needed to be submitted with the application include birth certificate or passport, parent’s citizenships; list of all the names that the applicant may have ever used, applicant’s residence details for the past five years information about the physical or mental disabilities (if any); details of employment for the past five years; educational qualification and other details for past five years; details of all foreign visits (information of all foreign trips that the applicant have had since the day he/she became a Green Card Holder (Permanent Resident), including the dates and place details); marriage details, if married (including previous marriages, dates, termination or divorce details, information about previous spouse (full name, citizenship etc), information about spouse’s immigration status in US) etc. Apart from this, the applicants should submit documents that give the details of any federal, state or local taxes that he/she has failed to pay or that are overdue.
The application must include details of the applicant’s connection in any criminal activities. For example the arrest, detain or charge details; date, place reason, outcome, disposition etc. If the applicant has previously been subjected to any immigration proceedings, he/she should never forget to include the information about each of these proceedings (place, date, disposition etc). If the naturalization applicant has served the US armed forces, those details must be included. Other details that need to be submitted include details of selective service registration (selective Service Number as well as the date of registration), details of the exemption from the service, the reasons etc. If the applicant has been unwilling to perform military or civilian service, they must justify it with the reasons. Applicants are required to provide spouse’s complete information. For example the copy of his or her passport, date of birth, Social Security Number, home address, citizenship etc, his/her previous marriage details, reasons for marriage termination, country of citizenship (previous) etc. Applicants having children should also provide all the information about their children. For example, their full name, present address, date and country of birth, alien registration number etc.
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