Tuesday, April 11, 2006

I’m an immigrant, yet I was not compelled to join yesterday’s “Immigration March” in downtown Phoenix. Why? For nearly 8 years I've put in my dues, followed the rules, and endured the uncertainty and constant unease that comes from dealing with the labyrinthine mess that is the US Immigration bureaucracy, and so should anyone else who seeks to come here. I'm not about to support a protest movement to make the whole process easier for some people simply because they made a mad dash across the Mexican border without getting caught.

Should there be no consequences for breaking the rules, and conversely, should there be no reward for following them? For the march organizers, the answers to those questions are "No" and "Who cares?" Their ultimate goal, carefully omitted from the media soundbites, but clumsily displayed amongst the colorful banners and creative chants calling for equality and justice, is expedited amnesty for the 11 million illegal immigrants living in the United States. They want legal, citizen-track status for them all, quickly. Ask the immigration advocates behind the march if, in addition to “amnesty”, they think there should be tougher border enforcement to stem to tide of bodies flooding into the country, and the answer is no. Do they think there should be harsher penalties for employers who hire illegal labor? Absolutely not. Should immigrants residing here illegally be held to account for breaking the law, even if it only meant paying a small fine? Again, no way. There is only one solution, amnesty for all. No conditions, No concessions, No exceptions, no penalties for anyone, and no border enforcement, ever.

Seems like a rather simplistic solution to such a complex problem, doesn’t it? One has to wonder whether the hardcore immigration advocates are just ignorant of the scope of the crisis, or if there are other motives at play? Hmm…

7 Comments:

At 4/12/2006 7:51 AM, Anonymous Canuckguy said...

Ahhh, well perhaps you should be prepared to speak Spanish as it would not surprise me it will become a required language in some states. Welcome to the two language state, a la Canada. The Americans have only themselves to blame for this, about 10 million illegals aliens? The present and past administrations turned a blind eye to this growing out of hand problem. And guess who are to blame? Well powerful special interest groups including greedy short sighted Republican backers(well you just know I had to get that fact in there) that lust for cheap labour. Hey, maybe your house and others in your area were built by Latinos. Well they can't deport 10 million illegals so at the very least build a wall a la Berlin Wall and also deport, without chance of appeal, the 100,000 or so hardened criminals. Perhaps after a while, Canada will start looking good again to you, maybe you should not give up on your Canadian citizenship just yet.

 
At 4/12/2006 9:08 AM, Blogger Ace said...

Ah yes, once again it’s the Republicans fault. You know, last I checked the country was only about half Republican, which means all those illegal immigrants couldn’t possibly be under the exclusive employ of GOP special interests. Are there no rich Democrats out there with a strong vested interest in leaving the flow of cheap, illegal labor continue unabated? Judging from the number of millionaires/billionaires on the Democratic Party’s contributors list from the ’04 campaign, I’d say there are at least one or two, or maybe several thousand.

US immigration policy has been one big cluster-f**k for a long time (pardon the French), spanning several administrations and congressional delegations, so it’s difficult to lay blame on one party over the other. The number of illegals coming into the US through the southern border has increased almost exponentially over the past decade. Based on this fact, one could say the Clinton Administration and the special interests to which it was beholden are responsible for exacerbating the problem, but that would be a specious argument. The more likely causes are the robustness of American economy since the mid-90’s, which fuelled demand for unskilled manual labor, coupled with unofficial state policy in Mexico to forgo concerted efforts to improve conditions for the large number of its citizens still living in abject poverty.

While the Clinton White House and the Republican Congress of the ‘90s was busy tinkering with “immigration reform” to allow highly skilled specialists into the country to fuel the Information Technology boom, they completely ignored the mushrooming illegal migrant labor pool on the low end. Tougher border enforcement and a temporary guest worker program could have stemmed the tide of bodies coming in from Mexico, but the powers that be chose to ignore the problem. I would call that a cluster-f**k, but I don’t agree that the solution now is blanket amnesty without penalties or enforcement as some advocates want.

Will Canada start looking good to me again? I doubt it, especially if the deciding factor is going to be the country’s immigration policy vis-à-vis the US. If the tables were turned and Mexico bordered Canada, you’d have the same mess on your hands. Back when an immigration reform discussion last reared its ugly head up there, the screaming liberal banshees in Toronto and Vancouver went ape-shit at the suggestion that certain curbs on immigration could be a good thing. I’m amazed they didn’t burn down the Reform/Alliance campaign offices at the time.

 
At 4/12/2006 6:46 PM, Anonymous Canuckguy said...

I was clear in stating I did not blame the whole mess on the Republicans, I had said the blame is on "powerful special interest groups 'including' greedy short sighted Republican backers". It's obvious the other portion of the blame are the Democrats by default. In other words, its a mess the Americans allowed to develope. To throw some crap in Bush's direction, in reading the details in the news, it is estimated at least 2 million or 20% of the illegal aliens entered during the last 2 years so that is Bush's watch. And that is just 2 years. I won't argue against you about Canadian policy, it lets in too many undesirables and too weak when it comes to deportations.

 
At 4/13/2006 8:55 AM, Blogger Ace said...

Canada has stepped up its deportation efforts of late, sort of. It's a bit of window dressing to make the Feds appear to be doing something about the escalating Jamaican and Asian gang warfare in Toronto. They still let plenty of illegals with criminal backgrounds to enter the country, though. Some things never change, I guess.

Here's some interesting tidbits I just learned from the Center for Strategic Policy. Of the 3 major North American countries, apparently Mexico leads the US and Canada in deportations by a wide margin. They also have the strictest constitutional requirements for attaining nationalized citizenship, the strictest visa laws, and the most militarized border enforcement apparatus. Go figure.

 
At 4/13/2006 12:02 PM, Anonymous Canuckguy said...

The comments about Mexican strictness is certainly a 'go figure' item. So they must be deporting a more miserable people like Central Americans on their way to the US border? And as for their militarized border apparatus, well they certainly are not bothering with border crossers, they must be protecting their drug trade routes. As for sytrict citizenship requirements, who would want to be a Mexican citizen anyway? Rich American criminals?

 
At 4/13/2006 1:37 PM, Blogger Ace said...

Who might wish to become a Mexican citizen? Some Canadian Senators, perhaps?

 
At 4/17/2006 2:44 PM, Blogger Eddie said...

Ya, Mexico is messed up. Strange that Canada never needs to fight off Americans rushing to cross the Canadian border for economic reasons. Sure, the occasional American criminal wishes to reside in Canada, but for the most part, few wish to rush to Canada for economic reasons from the US.

 

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