Immigration Essay, Research Paper
?Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore, send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!? (Szumski 19). This poem, placed at the base of The Statue of Liberty was rightfully depicted as a welcome mat for the rejected and oppressed people of other nations. However, our country is now becoming disorganized and bombarded with mass immigration. This problem causes money to be spent on various areas of immigration, therefore Immigration negatively depletes the United States economy.
A nation of immigrants is what we asked for and is what we received, with people first starting to arrive after America gained its independence from Great Britain in 1783. Immigration was considered paltry immediately after the United States gained its independence and picked up shortly after. There were three main rushes of immigration recognized before World War I. The first, consisted of five million people mostly traveling from Great Britain, Germany, Scandinavia, Switzerland, and Holland between 1815 and 1860. The second rush, almost identical to the first in the sense of origin, obtained twice as many people as the first, a count of ten million people within a shortened time between 1860 and 1890. The third and final pre- World War I rush amounted to 15 million people, mostly from Italy, Austria-Hungary, Russia, Greece, Romania, and Turkey occurred between 1890 and 1914. As one can see these numbers show immigration was getting out of control early on leading up to present day problems. Then the back round of immigration shifted. ?Between 1820 and 1960, 85 percent of immigrants to the United States came from Europe, 13 percent from Western Hemisphere countries, and 3 percent from Asia? (Levine 8).
Ellis Island started off as a government land, used as a military base. The base consisted of housing, a twenty-gun battery, a magazine, and a barracks. On September 16,1833 the federal government sold Ellis Island to New York, but they ended up keeping military there. Finally, after much controversy, on April 11, 1890 congress decided to remove a naval magazine and improve the actual island by adding land so an immigration center could be built. Between the years of 1901 and 1910 Ellis Island welcomed in more than seven million immigrants. 1907 was one of the biggest years for immigration with over one million people being processed through Ellis Island. The process for someone to become a United States citizen took time, and with many new ships arriving daily, immigrants were detained and placed in barracks until they could be processed and sent off to either be a United States citizen or sent home.
The United States Immigration laws have since changed over the years. The United States now accepts more legal immigrants than the rest of the world. In the decades of the 1970?s and 1980?s the United States admitted 10.7 million immigrants. The trend seemed to continue in the 1990?s when the United States allowed another 10 million into the country. President Bushes signing of the Immigration Act in November of 1990 also raised quotas of legal immigrants by 40 percent (Levine 32) ? The United States currently accepts more than 700,000 immigrants legally each year, more than the rest of the world put together?(Griffin 363+).
It is fairly easy to obtain citizenship in the United States if that person meets all of the legal requirements to immigrate. The citizenship process begins with the Department of State. The person will meet with an American consultant in his of her own country and then apply for citizenship. An immigrant can also apply if they have lived in the country for more than 5 years. In the past, since there were so many people that applied for citizenship, a lottery was set up that determined who received the visas. The lottery is based on such things like investing, job skill, special talent, and others.
Acceptance of citizenship is determined by The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). INS has authority over all aliens while they are in the United States. The INS has many different jobs from inspecting aliens at the border, handling visa petitions, citizenship, and deportations. The INS has four regional offices in the United States, which are all located in different areas. Their locations include these following states: California, Texas, Minnesota, and Vermont. These regional offices are used as the administrative coordination for the 34 total District Offices. The district offices are split into separate units. The different units focus on investigation, deportation, examination, records, and information. In these units the District Offices will execute all of the immigration laws. The Boarder Patrol, which is within the INS, is the agency responsible for securing our nations boarder between ports of entry. The Boarder Partrol?s main goal, is to keep control over the international boundaries between the ports of entry. They do so by detecting and preventing illegal entry of aliens and smuggling into the United States. In addition, the Boarder Patrol is the primary agency designated to prohibit narcotics between points of entry. In order to accomplish its goal, the Boarder Patrol first patrols the international boundaries and then inspects passengers vehicles at checkpoints located in the area around any port of entry such as bus or train stations, and at terminals in an airport. The Boarder Patrol uses many means of transportation while patrolling. These vehicles can range from cars, trucks, boats, hover crafts, helicopters, and airplanes. The Boarder Patrol is active in 21 sectors, nine of which are located along the southwest boarder with Mexico. Whether Americans welcome them or not, once immigrants are in our country they have certain rights guaranteed to them by the united States constitution. In earlier times, their was rumor that undocumented aliens have no rights whatsoever, other than the right to humane treatment during deportation.
Although we don?t know the full scope on illegal immigration and drug smuggling, we know that both items show a serious threat along the southwest boarder. Experts estimate that most of the illegal aliens and drug smugglers entering the United States do so by crossing the southwest boarder. Though law enforcement is present, the flow of illegals and drugs still continues, and unless the efforts to control the boarder become effective, illegal immigration is expected to continue to increase through the years.
During 1993, in an effort to enhance security and gain control over the southwest boarder, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) recommended that the focus of Boarder Patrol should shift to preventing illegal entry rather than apprehending aliens once they have entered. The ONDCP recommended prevention measures, such as enhanced check point operations, enhanced electronic surveillance equipment, and multiple barriers. These measures would significantly increase the difficulty and raise the risk of crossing the boarder illegally. The Boarder Patrol estimates, that in the sectors where special operations have been mounted its agents catch 80 to 85 percent of those crossing (Kasindorf 4-A).
In 1994, the INS Commissioner approved a recommendation similar to the one above. The strategic plan was to first be tested on two areas that were known for having the greatest illegal activity, including San Diego and El Paso. The operation consisted of this, parking a Ford Expedition containing two Boarder Patrol Agents every 220 yards along the river front in El Paso and along Goat Canyon in San Diego, adding 69 extra Boarder Patrol Agents with high-tech scopes to investigate the heavily trafficked areas, and also to build a large fence (4-A). After this operation was launched in an area of San Diego and boarder jumpers became aware the number of illegals captured went down from 187,000 to 13,000 per year (4-A). many people would say that the number of boarder jumpers captured went down because they decided to go somewhere else when they found out that there was an increase in Boarder Patrol Agents. This was true for about 6 months, until illegal immigrant deaths skyrocketed due to the patrol on easily penetrable areas causing boarder jumpers to take more risk by climbing and swimming (4-A).
Why should the United States allow one unskilled worker into our country when the country is faced with the problem of having to many unskilled workers already? Mass immigration has negatively effected our nations economy and environment tremendously. Immigration has become a serious threat to the working man and working woman. People say that the flood of immigration at Ellis Island was beneficial to our country because it built what we have today, and this is true. Although, that argument does not work for this day and age. This mass immigration our country is experiencing once again reduces wages among our unskilled workers and forces more low income workers from the more populated immigration areas. Referring back to the Statue of Liberty that states: ?Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…?. The problem the United States is facing is that these huddled masses are in need of employment.
Along with jobs immigrants are in need of education and healthcare. Interestingly enough all public schools are forced to take immigrant children whether they are illegal or not. Nobody would have ever believed that illegals had the right to an education. Yet, in 1982 the United States Supreme Court ruled that undocumented immigrant children have a right to go to school. This ruling repealed a 1975 Texas law which withheld educational funds from children not ?legally admitted? into the country (Griffin 363+). ?Los Angeles officials say that children born to illegal immigrants now account for more than 65 percent of all births at county-run hospitals, costing taxpayers $28 million a year (363+). A question that is often asked and that I would like to address is, Is the United States admitting too many immigrants? The answer to this question is yes, when the number of immigrants is so high that the country cant take them in properly, as is the case right now, then it it is definitely time to do something. I believe that the United States should reduce the number of immigrants in our country because the United States should not solve its foreign policy problems through its immigration policy.
This proves to be a issue as well because with more children this means more teachers are in demand. Illegals have started to overcrowd county hospitals and more public doctors are a necessity. Another problem that the United States has encountered is the advances in technology. Yes these advances are quite helpful to an extent, but they have taken over the jobs of many unskilled workers. In result, the unemployment rate has become a huge factor that needs to be dealt with. More than half of the recent legal immigrants are low skilled and less likely to pay enough taxes for educating their children. Therefore their children grow up to be uneducated resulting in a constant detrimental cycle. Is there no end to this bombardment of low skilled immigrants? The environment is greatly effected by the massive increase of legal and illegal immigrants. More people results in more traffic. Along with more traffic comes not only pollution, but a more criminals taking over our rural areas. It?s as if the people of the United States are being thrust out of their own quite communities by illegals. Our nation is running out of resources to supply these masses of people. The land in this country is scarce, fragile, and should be preserved at all costs. The immigrants create population growth and economic growth which leads to environmental deterioration and make environmental improvements harder to achieve. Most illegal immigrants come to the United States in search of employment (Pendlton 1). They do so because of the decline in the peso. Mexico?s economy is unbelivably unstable therfore when the peso devaluates the intrest rates for business loans skyrocket from 15 to 20 percent ending up around 50 percent (1). The high intrest rate cause a recession in the economy and results in a loss of jobs (1). They may come and work for awhile, until they make enough money, and head home. Yet, the majority stay, try to find work, and then decide to live in the United States permanently. Again the question comes up, if the United States economy is failing to provide jobs for the people that live here already, how can America possibly provide additional jobs? Yes, some immigrants are able to create their own businesses, but what about the majority of immigrants that are looking for jobs and can?t seem to find anything? These immigrants are taking up space and lowering the wages of Americans.
Our unemployment rate is at an all time high, increasing on a day to day basis. American workers will lose their jobs and join the many immigrants who stand in line waiting to become employed. How devastating this must be for the people who are natives of this country and can?t find work because an immigrant has taken the jobs of many Americans.
Some people claim that American?s won?t do certain jobs that immigrants may. The ?dirty work? is what various people call it. This isn?t true at all, the United States has many unskilled workers that are in need of those jobs that lack machinery, but the United States can?t supply them. American people are unemployed and are in wage depression. Immigrants need to be controlled, whether legal or illegal, before our economy goes down the drain.
Another issue that needs to be addressed is the health care issue. United States citizens are entitled to full medical benefits, so why should immigrants be entitled to these same benefits? Some argue that immigrants should be allowed if they live and work in our country. This is the most ridiculous proposal! United States citizens who also live, work, and pay taxes should have no obligation to provide for those who aren?t even legally allowed to be in the country.
The costs for these benefits, that people think immigrants should have, is outstanding (Levine 83). It would cost millions of dollars in taxes to pay for these illegal immigrants? medical care. Along with those costs are the prison and jail expenses. Our country doesn?t have an unlimited supply of money (83)The United States finds it difficult to pay for the care of American citizens already. The people of this country pay enough taxes, and can no longer pay for those who have no right to be in the United States.
The United States is not too harsh on the illegal immigrants, they give them free emergency health care, but something should be done. Illegals are taking advantage of this health care system the United States has adopted. The illegals realize that the Taxpayer-Financed Social Services will put their treatment on all of the taxpayer?s tab. Is this fair? Absolutley not! Many talks of lawsuits against the Federal Government have been talked about, but nothing has been done. This is where the United States is failing in their duty to protect the people of this country.
In conclusion, one can see that immigrants are swarming our country and are destroying our economy. jobs are being lost and wages are being lowered. Our schools have become jam-packed and pollution has engulfed our cities. Illegals are stealing money from our government and costing the american people millions of dollars. the boarders are out of control and crimes is continuing to rise. Its time our country does something to put a stop to this ongoing concern among americans. RThe laws need to be revised and our government needs to step up and protect the american citizens. If no one controls this situation our ?melting pot? will boil over and create economic wrack.