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Poll: So - Mexican immigration?

Illegal means illegal. You get caught, you get sent back. 18 (33%)
I support a guest worker program of some sort. 11 (20%)
If they want to come here, let 'em. Citizenship for all! 8 (15%)
My insightful and nuanced opinion requires further explination. 18 (33%)
   Discussion: So - Mexican immigration?
Josh Woodward · 14 years, 2 months ago
Adiós, muchachos. If you want in, use the same channels for legal immigration that everyone else needs to follow.
iPauley Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
Bulls-eye. I've no problem with immigrants of of any nationality or race, as long as they follow the rules to get here.

And seriously... what's up with at least trying to assimilate? One would think that people would come to this country because they want to be here, and be an American, not because they want to rebuild it in the image of their homeland. I'm not sure the people in some of these pictures (warning -- language) are the folks I want to see become United States citizens:

f*** the law
stolen continent

-- Pauley
Paul D. Beasi Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
Which would be nice, except that there IS no legal channel for most of the illegal immigrants.

What do you need to do to be able to come here legally?

Well, if you're seeking political asylum, you can come here. That doesn't really apply to Mexicans.

If you're going to invest $1,000,000 in a US business, well then you can come here legally. That doesn't apply to the millions of poor Mexicans here.

If you have a really high end skill that United States is looking for (you know, so we can pay our US citizens with those same skills less money or not at all) then you can come here. Again, doesn't apply to the poor Mexicans who make up most of the illegals here.

If you are one of the millions of people who enters a lottery in which only thousands are selected at random and happen to be one selected, you can come here legally. But guess who can't even enter that lottery? Mexicans and Canadians.

So the REAL problem is that the system to get here legally is unbelievably broken. And how many of you so anxious to keep people who are working crap jobs at below minimum wage--because even that is more than they can get in Mexico to feed their families--out of the country are Native Americans? Yeah, thought so....
Andrea Krause · 14 years, 2 months ago
I had to vote number 4 even though I don't have any special answer. My answer is I HAVE no answer and don't even know how I feel about all the options.
Kris 'engaged' Bedient Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
ditto
Rimbo Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
Yup.
Frudog · 14 years, 2 months ago

If ur gonna do sumthing wrong u only MAY get caught.  It isnt illegal if you dont get caught.  

Bender Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
That reasoning is ridiculous.

An action is that is against the law is against the law regardless of whether someone is caught or not.

If you were to kill someone and no one else knew, would that make murder legal?
JÂșnÂȘthÂȘn · 14 years, 2 months ago
We need to have a real discussion about this issue before enacting stupid legislation.

The reality is that parts of the economy benefit from inexpensive labor. We should either decide to make that legal with guest workers - decouple citizenship from work - you can work here, pay some extra taxes or something, but you can't apply for citizenship unless you're outside the country. No line cutting issue.

Either that or say that we don't wan't cheap labor, and put the burden on where it belongs - the employers. Fine the hell out of anyone employing a non-resident. People won't come if there are no jobs.
Doktor Pepski, kommie · 14 years, 2 months ago
Forgive me for being short-sighted...but if i was going to another country, I'd at least try to get some understanding of the language. I do training for kitvhen work at a corporate restaurant chain...you would not believe how frustrating it is to tray and train someone who doesn't understand the language, can't read directions. I may be selfish, but I'm not all that keen on learning another language because someone else well...doesn't...
Songbill Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
I can understand how that's frustrating for you, but isn't that the restaurant chain's fault? They don't have to hire people who don't speak English, but are likely doing so because they will work for less.
Bender · 14 years, 2 months ago
This law, which many folks think will only affect Mexican migrant workers, may also make it harder for refugees to find asylum in America.

Because of how the airlines run, many refugees who would like to emigrate to Canada are forced to stay in the US. Due to legislation that the US strongarmed Canada into after 9/11 (following false reports that the 9/11 terrorists entered the US through Canada), refugees must stay in the first "safe" country in which they land. The US has a poor track record with refugees. Many are turned away. I can't see how this legislation could make the situation any better for them.

In fact, it's probably not hyperbolic to say that this law will kill many people.
Starfox · 14 years, 2 months ago
Either we are a country of laws, or we are a country of majority rules. You can't have it both ways. I have no problem with anyone who wants to come to the country and work and make their own way. But you gotta do it legally. You can't just break the law and then have it all made nice-nice cuz the dominate political parties don't want to lose power to the hispanic vote.
Paul the KOA · 14 years, 2 months ago
What should the purpose of immigration into the US be?
trunger is counting... · 14 years, 2 months ago
1. Sure...if you do it legally...it may take a few dozen years to go through all of that fun bureaucratic red tap. I checked the Immigration website and they claim they can process applications in 6-9 months. But considering how many people would be sending in applications...well, let's just say that I think that they're being overly optimistic.

2. Considering the Mexican point of view...well, they don't exactly have a large body of water in their way. On one hand, they can go through all of that red tape filling out forms (and it seems that there are a LOT of forms to fill out), understanding the forms (although I'm sure they have the forms in Spanish but then again...that would make too much sense), making deadlines, getting in their application fees (um...i won't say anything abou this point). On the other...they could simply (well, NOT simply but still a seemingly bit easier) traverse miles of unhospitible desert and cross an invisible border.

3. A quick and probably weak rebuttal on that whole language thing. Let's face it, a lot of people in this hemisphere speak Spanish (http://www.spanish-school.com.mx/learnspanish.html). I mean every other kid taking a language course in school is taking Spanish. So it MIGHT be a good thing to know some basic Spanish. Hell, I go to those self checkout lanes at the supermarket and the instructions are either in english or spanish. And most automated things in the U.S. are in either language. So, I think the Spanish language might be an integral part of American culture.

Well, I'm done showering now.
lawrence Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
3. A quick and probably weak rebuttal on that whole language thing. Let's face it, a lot of people in this hemisphere speak Spanish (http://www.spanish-school.com.mx/learnspanish.html). I mean every other kid taking a language course in school is taking Spanish. So it MIGHT be a good thing to know some basic Spanish. Hell, I go to those self checkout lanes at the supermarket and the instructions are either in english or spanish. And most automated things in the U.S. are in either language. So, I think the Spanish language might be an integral part of American culture.

I tend to make the language argument in terms of being able to effectively communicate with the people you most often do business with, regardless of your native language.

Nothing bugs me more than when I'm in a store or getting some kind of service and the people I'm trying to get the service from cannot understand what I want, and cannot figure out a way to ask that I rephrase my request so they can understand, and cannot make it clear to me what they're trying to explain.

I don't care where someone is from or what language they speak natively. If they're doing business in a place where there's a particular dominant language, they'd better be able to communicate in it.
Josh Woodward Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
> Nothing bugs me more than when...

Wow, that wins out over some stiff competition, then. ;-)
trunger is counting... Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
so then I ask, if you found yourself working in a different country, would you be willing to learn the language in order to communicate?
lawrence Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
If I needed it for the work I was doing, absolutely. If I needed it to survive, maybe I'd improvise a way to manage without learning it, but if my job involves interacting mostly with people that speak a language other than my own, I'd consider it a requirement that I learn it.
100% dainty! · 14 years, 2 months ago
I think before we come to a conclusion on the immigration question we need to ask *why* so many Mexicans are coming here. Clearly, whatever the United States government says, the United States economy wants the cheap labor. By that I don't mean that working class Americans want to compete with illegal immigrants. An immigrant worker population drives down wages and lowers labor standards. But there's nothing that big companies love more. That's the inevitable direction of capitalism; poor people will get exploited for the good of the profits. It's like the U.S. is talking out of both sides of its mouth. "Keep them out, but send them in to help us make money."

NAFTA has also played a huge role. Since its passage, an estimated 1.5 million Mexicans have lost their farming jobs as a result of U.S. agribusiness moving in. Now they're working in the bordertown factories, the maquiladoras, which are known for terrible labor conditions. They're also known for closing up shop and moving to China, leaving even more Mexicans unemployed. Meanwhile, the value of the average wage has dropped 34%, while the average cost of a "market basket" of food, housing and essential services has risen 247%.

If you were in this situation what would you do? Maybe you heard from a friend of a friend that they're looking for lettuce-pickers in California or tomato-pickers in Florida. I can't say what I'd do if I were a poor, unemployed Mexican. But I could imagine, after all the hard luck, thinking that jumping the border couldn't be any worse.
Songbill Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
Wow, that was well-said, Lauren.

The poverty of potential illegal immigrants to the U.S. must be kept at the forefront of this discussion. For example, the majority of Mexicans who come into this country do not have free English lessons and patient tutors at their disposal. Nor do they have easy access to the internet, long-distance phones, a savings account, or other ways to plan and fund an organized, thought-out legal emmigration to the U.S.

Their decisions are made in the way that decisions are made by so many of the poor here and around the world-- what do I need to do right now to keep myself and my family from being hungry or sick.

These are not people who are simply too lazy to fill out forms or learn a new language. Many of these people are struggling to survive and live a decent life in a way that we people of privilege on this site will probably never have to experience.
100% dainty! Back · 14 years, 2 months ago
Definitely a good point. I think it's easy for people who are privileged to just assume that everyone has access to the same services and conveniences. We're taught not to see the inequalities. So when immigrants don't learn English or don't go through the legal immigration process, we think, "Well, I could easily do that, so why aren't they bothering to?"

Also, some people have been talking about assimilation. I heard Pat Buchanan (*gag*) speak a year ago, and he was saying how all of these immigrants have to become "Americanized." Well, what does that mean? Learn English? Move to a suburb and get a TV? Fly the American flag everwhere? There are all these racist undertones in the demands that Latinos Americanize themselves. I think Mr. Buchanan really meant "they need to act more like us white people, the real Americans." That was the hidden idea.

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