Monday, October 24, 2005

Illegal Immigration

I don't like listening to commercials. I don't listen to any radio except for NPR (usually) because it's about the only radio station that doesn't have commercials. I don't even have TV (I have to get my Daily Show highlights from OverSpun, Futurama is totally on DVD and Simpsons is getting there, so yeah, no TV...) . So, I really hate commercials. And NPR switches to all Jazz music after 8:00, which is good, I just like to be recieving information while I'm driving. Sometimes LoveLine is able to fill that void if I'm out late enough.

(Stick with me, this anecdote is going somewhere.)

Other times I just flip through stations. I've noticed recently that there is an inordinate amount of FM talk radio stations in my area all of a sudden. I like listening to them during my drive time because it's odd to see what people are saying. This is what they seem to have been saying for the last two weeks I've been listening: THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT PROBLEM IN THE UNITED STATES IS ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION. If all I listened to were these talk radio hosts (I don't even know who they are, one was a dude named Rusty or something , another was like called American Night or something like that, I caught Sean Hannity once...) I would be forced into believing this. Every single issue they spoke about was related somehow back to illegal immigration. I heard various "Minuteman" leaders on the radio as pundits.

"We need to curb all of these illegals." "These people are bleeding us dry." "Illegals are the scourge of the United States. They're costing California alone billions."

It all seems to be shouted with one voice. But I did some research and found out that most immigrants aren't a burden, only a small percentage. Most pay taxes, most take jobs your average white person wouldn't and our economy would collapse without them. (This is probably why Bush is talking about work permits as opposed to shutting the borders. The hawks in his administration know that cutting off a labor-pool that cheap would be disastrous to the US economy.)

The thing that scares me the most about this is that we are a nation of illegal immigrants. I doubt the founding fathers would see a need to "cap" immigration. We have plenty of room. The more citizens we have the more taxpayers we have. We would be a stronger nation if we made it easier to get citizenship. But it seems as though the people on the radio have an irrational fear of "foreigners" in this land. They would honestly like (I heard them say this on the radio) to close our borders completely. No one comes in. Period. I doubt they've thought about what that's going to do to the tourism industry. I doubt they've thought about anything beyond not wanting minorities in their neighborhood.

Irrational fear and exclusion makes me sick. That's not America. People of all colors and nationalities deserve to be here every bit as much as we do. Let them come.

Unless you're a Native American, quit bitching about illegal immigrants.


LaurenceB said...

A big "Amen" on the illegal immigrant thing.

By the way, I came to your blog to give a little feedback on "This Divided State". I bought it from Amazon a couple of days ago, and I watched it last night. As a former student at both BYU and UVSC (a long time ago) I was curious to see it.

My general feeling is: I was pleasantly surprised. It was captivating, professional, objective, and entertaining. I really, really (that's double reallys!) enjoyed it. Well done!

Now I'm going to nitpick.
1. The star wars interviews were cute, but just one would have been enough. The same goes for the guy who looks like Michael Moore - Cute, but too much.
2. You left me hanging at the end. Why did Jim ask Joe to resign? Why didn't you interview him? Did he refuse to be interviewed, or did you just run out of time?

But overall - terrific movie!

Finally, I have a question:
Do you know the name of the Mormon pioneer family at the beginning of the movie? The picture looks familiar, but I can't place it.

Tired Immigrant said...

More often than not complaints about illegal immigration are simply veiled racism. The stress is always on the word "illegal", even though the complainers probably have no clue what those laws are, wther they are just or unjust, and their impact.

I'm not a Democrat, and do not like Moore and his ilk. Political parties suffer from a prototyical case of "marketing myopia". When they are controlled by a small "base" they tend to be uninnovative. The Republicans get away with a fair amount of playing to their base, but there "hard core base" is large -- thanks to the fundamentalist Christians.

I'm always amazed that the Democratic party buys in to the Republican line that one must play to one's base. In doing so, they lose the chance to be seen as the reasonable alternative.

Anonymous said...

The powers that be really like illegal immigration because it's a source of cheap labor and drives down the labor cost for everyone else. This is why they have to talk about "illegal immigration bad" while on the other hand doing nothing to actually stop it. It helps keep people divided by focusing attention on something other than their own machinations.
Here's a non-PC thing to say that is still worth thinking about: If they were serious about stopping illegal immigration, they'd have troops on the borders, rather than in Iraq. If they really wanted to seal the borders, they'd lay down some big mine fields. Yes, this would contravene more than a few international laws, but since when have the Bushies ever cared about international law? They're all lying.