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Mon Feb 13, 2017, 10:43 AM

Immigration Reform A Very Cloudy Issue

A Mother of two deported to Mexico this past week has the issue even more front and center than it was with the Muslim Ban that went down in flames. The problem is, her case is not as simple as it appears, perhaps forces us to take a closer look at how we as a nation can find compromise on this important issue...where to we draw that line between sympathy and the law? This mother who came to America illegally at 14 wanted a life here...problem is, in building that life, she stole/bought a fake ID, was using a stolen Social Security number. For any of us who have ever been a victim of Identity Theft, this is not a laughing matter, is not something easily dismissed.

Further (I think) complicating her case...she was undocumented, using a fake/stolen ID, and had been working in the United as an undocumented immigrant for over a year...under our current law, that last one is actually a felony in and of itself.

There are other issues that bother me. Undocumented immigrants claim they pay taxes, and in some, perhaps many that is a true statement. Yet as Paul Harvey used to say, and now for the rest of the story... many undocumented immigrants do not pay the BIG TAX, the one we all think of when we think about taxes, and that is Federal Tax. If you are working under the table, paying sales taxes and the like, but skipping out on your Federal Taxes, that is a serious matter, and the suggestions I have heard for getting right with the law as relates to this I find inadequate.

The jobs issue. Undocumented workers/immigrants do take jobs from Americans, and the lie that they only take jobs Americans will not take is simply not true...they have in many industries lowered the wage base, and are now firmly embedded into the Nursery, and Construction industries as examples...not exactly jobs Americans would turn their backs on.

My only point here, is that the issue is very complicated. I embrace finding a solution that finds a way to give those deserving a pathway to citizenship. The question is, how to do it, and should a part of the formula include a means of making whole those Americans who have been hurt badly with this influx of immigrants from foreign lands. Furthermore, is it time as a part of immigration reform including severe penalties, including jail time for those who hire undocumented immigrants, using E-Verify as the cornerstone of such a change where the employers are held accountable for their crimes.

I am as confused as the rest of us, but do feel the way to finding compromise and a solution is to talk openly and honestly, and hear everyone's side of the story, rather than cherry pick details that fit our own narrative.

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Arrow 23 replies Author Time Post
Reply Immigration Reform A Very Cloudy Issue (Original post)
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 OP
libtodeath Feb 2017 #1
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #2
LanternWaste Feb 2017 #3
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #5
libtodeath Feb 2017 #6
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #9
libtodeath Feb 2017 #10
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #12
TexasMommaWithAHat Feb 2017 #20
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #23
SecularMotion Feb 2017 #4
TexasMommaWithAHat Feb 2017 #7
libtodeath Feb 2017 #8
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #11
TexasMommaWithAHat Feb 2017 #21
jmg257 Feb 2017 #13
alarimer Feb 2017 #14
libtodeath Feb 2017 #16
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #17
alarimer Feb 2017 #19
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #22
Phentex Feb 2017 #15
The_Voice_of_Reason Feb 2017 #18

Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Original post)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 10:48 AM

1. These are desperate human beings in search of a better life.

They need compassion and care not labels.

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 10:54 AM

2. I get that they are desperate people...

but when it comes to employment, what about the desperate Americans they are stepping in front of. As example, from first hand observations. Go stand out along the edge of say a Home Depot where Day Laborers hang out hoping for a honest day's pay for an honest day's work. Watch what unfolds...most times it is struggling Black and White laborers who are the last to get picked, and I believed there is a reason for this...these people are legal citizens, while the others are not. Those hiring undocumented reasons want A) a cheap labor pool, and B) individuals who are not going to file a complaint against them if the employer decides at the end of the day to short their wages.

Do we turn our back on our own desperate people/families to help those coming from a foreign land?

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 10:59 AM

3. More accurately, 'what about the Americans who are offering them the opportunity

what about the desperate Americans they are stepping in front of..."

More accurately, 'what about the Americans who are offering them the opportunity to step in front of other desperate Americans..."

Cause. Effect. Don't conflate the two.

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Response to LanternWaste (Reply #3)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 11:02 AM

5. Read my original post....

It should be obvious that I am all for HOLDING EMPLOYERS ACCOUNTABLE, including jail time. Make E-Verify law of the land with very stiff penalties for those who violate the law, punish employers/upper management severely.

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 11:04 AM

6. Then push for their ability to participate in our system so they have a say in their economic

situation rather then just condemn them.

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #6)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:11 PM

9. Not to be a contrarian...

I am the first to lend a helping hand when I can. I support a pathway to citizenship for these people. That said, the large influx of undocumented immigrants into this country on various levels has personally cost me a lot. More than happy to share the how of it, but do find it odd that no seems overly concerned that I was hurt, or that I had to close my landscaping business...do you find people like me acceptable collateral damage of your humanitarianism, or worse, simply feel any costs some of us have paid are our own fault?

Fact...landscaping companies willing to hire undocumented workers brought a pricing structure to the industry that gave a person like me two choices...A) follow suit, hire undocumented workers so that I could remain competitive in the bidding process, or B) abide by the law, be a law abiding citizen, and in that process be left with no choice but to close the doors to my business.

Perhaps just bad luck, but have had two cars totaled, both hit by different undocumented/unlicensed drivers doing so while under the influence of alcohol. Living in a no-fault state, I got a check from the insurance company, but A) was not enough to replace the car I lost with one as nice as what I had, and B) saw my rates go up, even though neither accident was my fault, both times my car parked on the street in front of my house.

I am not condemning anyone, but do feel that we need to look at all sides of the equation. I am not fond of breaking up families, but also know we break up families every time we sentence a parent to prison here in the United States of America...too often said imprisonment for relatively minor drug offenses...I rarely hear folks expressing grave concerns about the break up of these families. Maybe many of those locked up behind four gray walls deserve the exact same chance to get right with the law as so many of us want to give to those who are here in America unlawfully? I was always taught charity starts at home, then expands outward.

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Reply #9)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:17 PM

10. You have hit about all the rw talking points.

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #10)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:28 PM

12. Truth is Truth.

I am about as liberal as they come. Support Marriage Equality, Women's Rights, legalization of marijuana, equality for all people regardless of their race, creed, religion, sex or sexual orientation. Have vote a straight blue ticket since I was old enough to vote which was many decades ago.

That said, I cannot ignore my own real life experiences. I lost my small business as a result of unchecked immigration, and have paid some other personal costs as well. I have friends of mine who are union carpenters who are sitting at home waiting for a call to work because jobs that used to go to companies that employed union workers are now going to companies that employ undocumented workers...fact is, a law abiding small company abiding by the law will lose most bids to companies that use undocumented (cheap) laborers.

So instead of having a reasonable discussion aimed at compromise, you choose to label my thoughts, my reality as RW talking points?

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Reply #12)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 05:58 PM

20. Forget it. They refuse to listen

My entire extended family was in the construction business when I was growing up. It's what put food on the table.

Hair stylists? Nail salons? Landscaping?

Those are all jobs Americans always did, and will still do for adequate pay.

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #10)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 06:40 PM

23. If you wish to understand my perspective...

I would suggest you read this article. Fact is, some native born people are hurt by immigration (legal or illegal). There are winners and losers...Companies/employers are winners, the immigrants are winners (higher wages) but what about the losers in our own country paying the prize of immigration...collateral damage?

http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/09/trump-clinton-immigration-economy-unemployment-jobs-214216

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 10:59 AM

4. +1

 

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 12:21 PM

7. There are desperate human beings all over the world

How many millions are we going to take in so wages can be suppressed even more?

Me? I couldn't tell anyone already here to leave, unless they are criminals. I could easily support laws making it more difficult for more undocumented immigrants to come, however.

Universal healthcare? Childcare? Affordable university? Nothing good is going to happen in an open border society. This is what the 1%ers want - the rest of us fighting for survival, while we have no say in our own countries.

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Response to TexasMommaWithAHat (Reply #7)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 12:47 PM

8. Sorry,I want less worry about man made borders and more compassion and humanity.

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:22 PM

11. More compassion?

What about our own huddled starving masses? 58.7 percent of Americans work at or near minimum, their toils creating/providing the goods/services that create the wealth for the one percent. Like it or not, it is estimated that undocumented workers lower the wage base (for the poorest in the work force) by some 200 plus Billion Dollars a year. We have an unchecked flow of cheap labor into America because the 1-10 percent in the top tier want exactly that...a cheap labor force.

I do not wish harm on those who have illegally come to America hoping for a better life, but I also am smart enough to know that if we cut off the jobs magnet that A) those coming here unlawfully looking for work will stop coming, and B) a shrinking of the available work force will leave employers with no choice but to pay higher wages, or close the doors to their business. If the best Waffle House can do is minimum wage, instead of a livable wage, let them close their doors.

It always amazes me how some in this world are all for compassion and humanity, even if said compassion and humanity is actually hurting their own neighbors and countrymen/women. Like I have said in this thread, all for immigration reform, all for finding a fair pathway to citizenship, but think it a fools folly to simple ignore those who have been hurt gravely through unchecked unlawful immigration...and I blame CORPORATE AMERICA, not those who have come here for that reality.

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Response to libtodeath (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 06:13 PM

21. Then forget about social programs like childcare and healthcare

We are never going to get them with open borders. Never.

Borders represent a group of people who willingly govern themselves and pay for defense and things like childcare, education, and healthcare. Provide for the common welfare. You know...shit like that.

The 1%ers want a borderless society where we will all be competing for slave wages. Where millions pour in driving down wages, shrinking the middle class even more, and making it impossible to pay for items like childcare and healthcare, and providing our citizens with an adequate safety net.

We're going to devolve into a third-world country with completely open borders.

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Original post)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:29 PM

13. I have to imagine that most of the laws were put in place for good reason.

Should be simple enough for a nation to decide to enforce them, or do away with them.

Of course we may as well just add that to the list of issues that won't be resolved, but trying to have it both ways seems a bit messy.

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Original post)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:35 PM

14. Where is your evidence for immigrants taking jobs from Americans?

That is a right-wing talking point that has little, if any, basis in reality. The reality is that it is the EMPLOYER'S fault, for not doing their due diligence on who they hire, for not playing by the rules because they want to pay starvation wages and they want employees who will not complain about abuse or poor working conditions.

The rest of your post is more of the same. Where is the rational basis for deporting someone who has lived here since she was a child? She is, for all intents and purposes, American. There is nothing there for her in her country of origin.

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Response to alarimer (Reply #14)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:46 PM

16. The OP is pretty transparent isnt it?

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Response to alarimer (Reply #14)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 04:51 PM

17. Just because you don't like facts does not make them RW Talking Points.

Do not consider Pew Research a RW place to get one's facts from.

15 percent of undocumented workers are in the Construction Trades.
14 percent are in installation and repair.
14 percent are in transportation.

Don't tell me Americans will not work Construction, installation/repair and transportation jobs. I support finding a pathway to citizenship for most undocumented immigrants, but also feel we need to shut down the jobs magnet first...which makes far more sense than building a wall. If we go after those who hire undocumented workers, criminalize their hiring practices with stiff penalties including jail time, and the flow of undocumented will slow to a manageable fair level.

I never said to deport this woman...instead said it is complicated. I happen to believe in Dreamers, and feel we need to find a solution...but think that solution has to take care of not those who have come for a better life, but also those being hurt by their arrival.

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Reply #17)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 05:36 PM

19. You have yet to list any facts.

You still do not show that those illegal immigrants took jobs that would otherwise have gone to legal residents or citizens. Maybe those employers never would have hired people legally in the first place. Again, because they wanted to pay cheap labor who won't complain about the conditions.

Why is the focus always on the people and NEVER on the employers for skirting hiring laws? Why is that, do you think? Could it be because these so-called vaunted business owners really prefer to cut corners and not play by the rules in the first place?

I never said that Americans would never work those jobs. I said that they won't work those jobs at the wages those employers are willing to pay or under conditions no one should have to endure. It's the EMPLOYERS who are at fault here, for abusing and exploiting workers who cannot go to legal authorities.

A child who came to this country at 14 and has lived here for some considerable amount of time is, unless they are a violent criminal, not really hurting anyone. Immigration law is administrative in nature, no one is ever tried for those supposed "crimes". Instead, they are deported, sometimes to countries where they have never lived and certainly to which they have few ties and little hope of a bright future. It is a blunt instrument that ultimately causes more harm than it prevents.

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Response to alarimer (Reply #19)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 06:15 PM

22. We seem to be arguing two sides of the same coin.

I have always thought that employers who hire undocumented workers are the root problem...turn off the jobs magnet, and do it in a way that employers are held accountable, and jailed for hiring those not entitled to hold a job in America.

That then begs the question...which comes first, something like E-Verify with some serious teeth, or trying to provide relief to some 11 Million undocumented immigrants. As an American struggling to keep my own head above water, I want to see the jobs magnet turned off first, then comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship. It's hard to ask people who are suffering themselves to set their own issues aside so that the nation can help others from a different country who are suffering as well. Seems a bit unfair from my perspective...all this talk about generosity of heart, all this talk of helping others who come here for a better life, but what about those who are here, were born here who don't have that better life, most times not of their own making.

As the old expression says, "Charity starts at home." We have a lot of Americans who are struggling to stay afloat, either can't find a job, or are working at a job that pays starvation wages...I side with giving them a helping hand up the ladder, then once their stabilized, once we have taken care of our own, reach out a helping hand to others around the world as we are able. You might disagree with that, but tell me...if you are out of work, if you can't pay your bills, how are you going to be able to help someone else up the ladder if doing so is going to keep you treading water at the bottom of the well?

Being accused in this whole thread of espousing Right Wing views...think it is short sighted and unfair to assume that all Democrats, all progressives march in lockstep on every issue. Our views on some subjects are directly shaped by our own experiences good or bad. I happen to be one of those who has paid a cost from unchecked illegal immigration into our country, and though I am sympathetic to those wanting a better life, have issues if their better life means me giving up mine. I am suggesting there is an answer, a pathway forward to comprehensive immigration, but that compromise can only occur when all parties have a voice at the table...even when some disagree with that voice.

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Response to The_Voice_of_Reason (Original post)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 02:45 PM

15. It IS complicated but there IS a lie about taking some jobs from Americans...

It differs in different parts of the country and within industries. As you said, landscaping may be a job that some Americans may be willing to do. But here in Georgia there are farming jobs and chicken processing plant jobs that Americans don't want to do or won't do at the wages being offered. Everybody wants it both ways. High wages but low prices at the store. Or cheap labor. As soon as the "officials" attempt to crack down (enforce the laws) the farmers/chicken plants are the first to scream bloody murder. Remember, to the right wing politicians here, business is king. Money trumps all. Let's see how many Bible thumpers will pay $8.00 for their Chik-fil-a sandwich when you increase those "American" labor jobs.

Two lines from Latino Connection Georgia article:

"A lack of workers (and clients) lead to business loses and stagnant economic development.. Consider that there is no state that has been more growth in its number of Latina-owned firms than Georgia and that Georgia already loses over $140 million dollars in rotten crops due to the lack of labor in the fields.

To those fiscally conservative; remember that detentions and deportations have a massive cost to tax payers, $1.80+ billion in 2014 and 92% of that cost is paid by the states."

-----

As we speak, there is an attempt being made at rounding up and removing illegal workers. I'd be willing to bet you how long that lasts NOT because of humanitarian reasons, but just as soon as the landscape business heats up again in the spring.

Now, be clear, I am not saying undocumented workers is the way to go. I'm saying ANYONE DESERVES to be on the path to citizenship so why not make it easier to be legal?

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Response to Phentex (Reply #15)

Mon Feb 13, 2017, 04:58 PM

18. Which comes first....

Legalization, or raising wages...which comes first?

Unless you cut off the jobs magnet, those in search of a better life will continue to arrive, and American Wages for those in the bottom 40 percent of earners will remain stagnant.

My take...if those with the money are not willing to pay higher wages, let their crops rot in the field, let the Waffle Houses close their doors.

Another solution...provide an incentive for Baby Boomers to retire...stop penalties and taxes on our 401 accounts, roll back retirement age to 60/62 and a lot of us will leave the work force, creative worker shortages, which in turn will drive up wages for everyone.

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