Thursday, August 17, 2006

Mi Casa, Su Casa?

Candy Cane has posted an interesting comment. We've moved the responsibility to employers, yet the illegal immigrants are one step ahead: they have devised fake SSN that fool even the SSN administration!
So, what do we do? Just open up the borders and give up?
Although it would be a nice thought -- to get rid of borders and let human beings travel and live freely without any documentation or license -- we can't do that.
Why not?
Well, taxes for one -- the people who live here legally pay taxes
Terrorism also -- this is not just new to the 21st century -- unfortunately humans have decided that they want to kill one another -- innocent civilians as well -- so we have to monitor who comes in and goes out of our countries.
Maybe the whole focus is wrong? Yes we can build "fortress America" only to a certain extent -- what about pressure on the countries where all these illegal immigrants are coming from?
Although it is a charming thought -- not every illegal immigrant wants to come to America because they love it and what it stands for -- it's for the opporutnities, the rights and the freedoms afforded to them.
So, maybe the "developed countries" should put pressure on offending countries to offer more rights, freedoms and opportunities to their own people -- maybe then -- illegal immigrants will not be so willing to leave their countries.
After all, these individuals that Candy Cane is talking about, are looking for jobs -- they WANT to work -- so how do we make jobs for them in their own countries?

Monday, August 14, 2006

A workable immigration reform?

The longer we wait for a reasonable, workable immigration reform, the greater the problems and the more illegal immigrants that will risk their lives to come to the U.S.
The proposed Pence-Bailey proposal seems to make the most sense -- a compromise between the Senate and the House.
We do need more enforcement, and we do need more accountability from employers. We also have to make it clear that illegal immigration will not be rewarded -- however-- we have to be realistic and understand that human beings have lived in the U.S. illegally for many years. Do we punish them and their U.S. families with the ultimate: deportation and bars to entry into the U.S (3 or 10 years)?-- or do we recognize that there must be a way to discourage illegal immigration (increase enforcement at the border and at the place of employment) while ensuring that those who have come here illegally are processed just like every other immigrant to the U.S. -- either through a proposed "Ellis Island Center" or at a port of entry.
It took me 13 years to legally immigrate to the U.S., and become a citizen -- 17 years doesn't sound that long if you really want it. Surely, it doesn't take 17 years to become a legal permanent resident -- whereby you have almost all the rights of a U.S. citizen but you cannot vote, or hold public office.
This Pence-Bailey proposal sounds like a pretty good compromise to me.