Analysis Of The Immigration Problem Essay

, Research Paper

Analysis of the Immigration Problem

The world has gone through a revolution and it has changed a

lot. We have cut the death rates around the world with modern medicine

and new farming methods. For example, we sprayed to destroy mosquitoes

in Sri Lanka in the 1950s. In one year, the average life of everyone

in Sri Lanka was extended by eight years because the number of people

dying from malaria suddenly declined.

This was a great human achievement. But we cut the death rate

without cutting the birth rate. Now population is soaring. There were

about one billion people living in the world when the Statue of

Liberty was built. There are 4.5 billion today. World population is

growing at an enormous rate. The world is going to add a billion

people in the next eleven years, that’s 224,000 every day! Experts say

there will be at least 1.65 billion more people living in the world in

the next twenty years.

We must understand what these numbers mean for the U.S. Let’s

look at the question of jobs. The International Labor organization

projects a twenty-year increase of 600 to 700 million people who will

be seeking jobs. Eighty-eight percent of the world’s population growth

takes place in the Third World. More than a billion people today are

paid about 150 dollars a year, which is less than the average American

earns in a week. And growing numbers of these poorly paid Third World

citizens want to come to the United States.

In the 1970s, all other countries that accept immigrants

started controlling the number of people they would allow into their

countries. The United States did not. This means that the huge numbers

of immigrants who are turned down elsewhere will turn to the United

States. The number of immigrants is staggering. The human suffering

they represent is a nightmare. Latin America’s population is now 390

million people. It will be 800 million in the year 2025. Mexico’s

population has tripled since the Second World War. One third of the

population of Mexico is under ten years of age, as a result, in just

ten years, Mexico’s unemployment rate will increase 30 percent, as

these children become young adults, in search of work. There were in

1990 an estimated four million illegal aliens in the United States,

and about 55 percent of them were from Mexico.

These people look to the United States. Human population has

always moved, like waves, to fresh lands. But for the first time in

human history, there are no fresh lands, no new continents. We will

have to think and decide with great care what our policy should be

toward immigration. At this point in history, American immigration

policies are in a mess. Our borders are totally out of control. Our

border patrol arrests 3000 illegal immigrants per day, or 1.2 million

per year, and Two illegal immigrants get in for every one caught. And

those caught just try again!

More than 1 million people are entering the U.S. legally every

year. From 1983 through 1992, 8.7 million of these newcomers

arrived-the highest number in any 10-year period since 1910. A record

1.8 million were granted permanent residence in 1991. Because present

law stresses family unification, these arrivals can bring over their

spouses, sons and daughters: some 3.5 million are now in line to come

in. Once here, they can bring in their direct relatives. As a result,

there exists no visible limit to the number of legal entries.

Until a few years ago, immigrants seeking asylum were rare. In

1975, a total of 200 applications were received in the U.S. Suddenly,

asylum is the plea of choice in the U.S., and around the world, often

as a cover for economic migration. U.S. applications were up to

103,000 last year, and the backlog tops 300,000 cases. Under the

present asylum rules, practically anyone who declares that he or she

is fleeing political oppression has a good chance to enter the U.S.

Chinese are almost always admitted, for example, if they claim that

China’s birth-control policies have limited the number of children

they can have.

Right now, once aliens enter the U.S., it is almost impossible

to deport them, even if they have no valid documents. Thousands of

those who enter illegally request asylum only if they are caught. The

review process can take 10 years or more, and applicants often simply

disappear while it is under way. Asylum cases are piling up faster

than they can be cleared, with the Immigration and Naturalization

Service falling farther behind every year. At her confirmation

hearings at the end of September, Doris Meissner, Clinton’s nominee as

commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Services, conceded,

‘The asylum system is broken, and we need to fix it.’

Adding the numbers of legal and illegal immigrants, 50 percent

of all U.S. population growth comes from immigration. While Americans

try to have smaller families, immigration threatens our nation. If

immigration rates continue to be this high, more than seventy million

people will be added to the United States population in just fifty

years, with no end in sight. We are taking in more people than all of

the rest of the world combined. As have all the other countries of the

word, America needs to control its borders. As every house needs a

door, so every country needs a border. And yet, our borders are full

of holes. We have clearly lost control over our future. Our children

will pay the price of uncontrolled immigration.

The United States is no longer an empty continent. In 1886,

when the Statue of Liberty was built, there were 58 million people in

the United States. In 1984 there were 240 million people, that’s four

times the total population in less then a century The U.S. cannot and

should not be the home of last resort for all the world s poor,

huddled masses. We are not doing a good job with our own poor, as we

see more people without jobs.

Supporters of immigration use many arguments to support their

side. Let’s look at a few of these arguments: Illegal immigrants take

jobs no Americans want. The fact is that the average illegal immigrant

arrested in Denver, Colorado, made more than seven dollars an hour.

Many were making over 100 dollars per day. Denver identified 43

illegal aliens making 100 dollars per day as roofers, while 438 people

were registered in their employment services who would have loved

those jobs. The average illegal immigrant arrested in Chicago makes

$5.65 an hour. More than thirty million American workers make less

than that.

A common belief is that aliens fulfill many of the least

desirable jobs. However, most experts agree that in today’s economy,

there is no shortage of Americans competing for many of these same

jobs. Actually, many Americans already work in these low-paying jobs.

For example: the poor black woman, who works as a seamstress, Her boss

asked her to train a new employee, an illegal immigrant. As soon as

she finished training her new charge, she was fired. Her position, of

course, went to the illegal immigrant, who was willing to work for

less pay, and under deplorable working conditions. This is one example

of how illegal workers depress wages, and slow, stall or prevent

unionization or improvements to working conditions.

Another myth cited by supporters of immigration is that

illegal immigrants work hard, pay taxes, and do not go on welfare. The

sad truth is that these folks seem to learn the ropes of the welfare

system with incredible speed. Today’s illegal immigrants apply for and

receive benefits from the government that citizens need. According to

Donald L. Huddle, an economist at Rice University in Texas, legal and

illegal immigrants cost the nation a net 42.5 billion dollars in 1992.

The Huddle study also found that in 1992, more than 2 million

Americans were displaced from their jobs by illegal immigrants. This

resulted in an additional 11.9 billion dollars in public assistance.

In California alone, they cost more than 18 billion dollars a

year. California currently has an estimated 300,000 illegal immigrants

now attending grades’ 0-12. This will costs the California tax payers

an estimated 1.5 billion dollars. This is 10 percent of the students

currently enrolled in our elementary schools today! California has

49.8 percent of the countries illegal aliens, therefore, California

pays multiple costs for its leaky borders.

Providing health care for illegal immigrants costs California

tax payers 400 million dollars annually. Illegals drain about two

billion dollars a year for incarceration, schooling and Medicaid from

the budgets of such major destination states as Texas, Florida and

California. For California alone, a 1993 study by the California

Legislature estimates criminal justice costs involving illegal

immigrants to be 385 million dollars to the state, with an additional

112 million dollars to local or county government. This is a total

cost of 497 million dollars, paid by the California tax payer, each

and every year!

Illinois did a study showing that it paid 66 million dollars

in unemployment benefits to illegal immigrants in one year, despite a

law that was supposed to stop illegal immigrants from getting

unemployment benefits. Los Angeles estimates that it spends 269

million dollars in social services on illegal immigrants each year.

Every person added to our population drains our natural resources and

contributes to the destruction of our environment.

In a Pulitzer-Prize-winning study, the Des Moines Register

found that for every person added to our population, 1.5 acres of the

richest farm land goes out of production to make way for new houses,

roads, and shopping centers. If this continues, the United States will

stop shipping food to other countries shortly after the year 2000. How

can the United States feed the hungry people of the world?

The national majority now says it favors cutting back on legal

immigration. A TIME/CNN poll determined last week that 77 percent of

those surveyed felt the government was not doing enough to keep out

illegal immigrants. For years now, the battle has raged between the

federal authorities who are supposed to police the borders and the

states who pay the price if they fail.

In an attempt to reduce illegal immigration, Nevada Senator

Harry Reid, has introduced a bill that would establish an annual limit

of 300,000 newcomers, including ”immediate relatives,” and a

national identification card. Congress passed legislation in 1986 that

stipulates fines and other penalties for employers who knowingly hire

illegal aliens. The bill includes provisions to grant amnesty to

illegal aliens who were in the United States prior to January 1, 1982,

and to aid farmers who have relied on illegal aliens to harvest their


Does anyone benefit from the rising tide of illegal

immigration? Businesses that can profit from employing illegals at low

wages do. And many illegals are better off here than in their own

countries. But many others are exploited by dishonest employers and

are treated like slaves. These immigrants are denied the rights and

privileges we want every person in the United States to enjoy.

In closing, we must all realize this issue will not go away.

Other generations of Americans made great sacrifices so that we today

can enjoy the freedom, the quality of life, and the standard of living

that we have. When I think of what uncontrolled immigration will do to

the dreams of my parents and grandparents, what it will mean to the

future of my children, I realize that we will find a way to control

immigration. Because we must.

Primary And Secondary Sources

(These listings are in order of their importance, in category.)

"Immigration: Identifying Propaganda Techniques"

Bonnie Szumski & JoAnne Buggey, Ph.D.

College of Education, University of ‘ Minnesota

(Greenhaven Press 1989)

"Immigration-Opposing Viewpoints"

David Bender & Bruno Leone, Series Editors

William Dudley, Book Editor

(Greenhaven Press 1990)

"The Essential Immigrant"

Dan Lacey

(Hippocrene Books 1990)


Kelly C. Anderson

(Lucent Books 1993)

"Immigration-A pictorial History of"

Oscar Handlin

(Crown Publishers 1972)

"Immigrants, Refugees, and U.S. Policy"

Grant S McClellan

(H. W. Wilson Company 1981)

"Immigration and Illegal Aliens"

Mark A. Siegel, M.A., Ph.D.

Nancy R. Jacobs, B.A., M.A.

Patricia A. Von Brook, B.A., M.S.

(Information Plus 1989)