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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

11/27/23 pdf
November 27, 2023

Immigrant Rights, Immigrant Wrongs

Undocumented Immigration has been an issue that the Government has been known to speak about from two sides of its mouth.

When necessary, they can publicly make promises to take a tougher stance on illegal immigration, strengthening laws, and reinforcing the image that our government is on the side of honest hardworking American citizens. But always behind the scenes have been the lobbyists, business owners, and immigration advocacy groups who have acknowledged the hard working cheap labor offered from illegal immigrants as beneficial (some might even say necessary) toward the heath of certain sectors of our economy.

And now we are seeing this very divide being played out in congress. The House has recently passed a bill that would move undocumented status up to a felony from where it is currently a misdemeanor. The senate is working on their own bill which is expected to incorporate President Bush’s guest-worker program that would allow many currently illegal immigrants to gain legal status for a period of time as long as they register.

Only one of these bills can be accepted and a compromise is unlikely. With these two branches of congress looking so irreconcilably divided, it’s expected that very little will be agreed upon and no legislation we make it before the president.

How convenient. The republican majority has created a debate, given solutions that appease both sides of the issue, and then effectively will take no action. The best part is that some of the most vital aspects of this debate aren’t even being discussed.

When we say that there are roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants currently living in this country “taking our jobs”, there is an undeniable element that is being ignored: it’s these very same “hard-working Americans” who have been offering these jobs to these illegal immigrants. If we were truly interested in cracking down on the cycle of illegal immigration, wouldn’t it make sense to dismantle their very motivating factor? When such a high percentage of, say, migrant workers are illegal immigrants, does the government actually not notice how very few people these business’ have on pay role. More likely the government has just been turning a blind eye towards what it knows is an important element of our economy.

This is one of the main reasons why almost all debates on illegal immigration stinks of political maneuvering. Politicians say they want to take action, but they just don’t want to mess with the institutionalized system that has been enabling them and even inviting them. When your dealing with 11 million plus undocumented immigrants, it is ridiculous to think that we would be able to deport all of them or even a fraction of them, especially when there are still plenty of welcoming opportunities right here ready to give them our low-wage, long-hour, undesirable jobs.

Threat alone is not going to stop immigrants from crossing the boarder. Legal or not, felony or misdemeanor, as long as opportunities are still being offered here in the US, immigrants will find a way to get into the country. The reality is that our only real course of action is to regulate it, as to make it more mutually beneficial for both Immigrant workers and American Business.

And nobody should be too opposed towards strengthening our control of the boards, especially in our post-911 environment. It’s actually quite disturbing how relatively easy it is to make it into our country undetected. But in calling for stronger boarder regulation, this is not an invitation to make it more dangerous for undocumented immigrants to get here. It is completely unacceptable and appalling the desperate measure and dangerous risks that by many illegal immigrants are forced to take to get into this country. The solution is to acknowledge that they are coming here, that we use and need their labor, and that a program that is mutually beneficial to both parties is possible.