Introduction

Today, there is a growing need for immigration reform in the United States.
While there are many who oppose the idea of reform, it is simple to see that
reform is the real answer to everyone’s questions, and that reform will only be a
force of positive change all over the country.
As we explore these topics, I encourage the enticed reader to do more
research and learn as much as they can, for an educated mind is one who can
provide a positive force for change.

The United States of America, a Nation Built on
Immigration
(N) North American republic containing 50 states - 48 conterminous states in North
America plus Alaska in northwest North America and the Hawaiian Islands in the Pacific
Ocean


In 1492, when Christopher Columbus accidentally found the “New World,
and unwittingly started immigration to what is now the USA, he never would have
imagined the amazing country that resides there now. Around 1620, the pilgrims
started to come, pursuing religious freedom from an oppressive government, and
found a way to live, and prosper in the United States. The same can be said for
people from every other country in the entire world. Be it European, Asian,
African, South American, or from Oceania, every one of them has had some sort
of influence on American Culture today, and you can see it everywhere. Our
languages, religions, food, style, art, and sports all have some outside influence,
and that is what makes our country one of the best in the entire world.
When immigration is being fought today, it is very important to know, and
remember where you came from, or where your family has come from. As we
take a look into what our nation is undergoing today, we can see many parallels
to what we originally saw with the pilgrims, and many other groups of immigrants.
What we see is a group of outcast people seeking refuge from a corrupt
government, or oppressive regime. What we can see are people eager to earn
better lives, and to work hard for what they will earn. What we can see is people
with a love and hope for our country who are met by hatred, anger, and rejection.
Imagine if your ancestors had been met with the same, would you be here
today?
How then, can we hope to continue to grow our country, when we are so
close-minded to this new wave of immigration? In a country that values growth
and freedom so highly, how can you cause so many people to go homeless, and
hurt like this.




Jobs
(N) A task or piece of work, especially one that is paid.

One of the most typical complaints, and arguments against regular
immigration is the idea that immigrants come to the United States to take the jobs
of the hardworking “American
1
” people. People believe that all immigrants come
to take their positions, and take control of the country. This fear of competition is
rational, but not necessary. When, according to the Census Bureau's 2009
American Community Survey, the U.S. immigrant population was 38,517,234, or
12.5 percent of the total U.S. population, it is easy to feel like immigrants are
overwhelming the US.
In fact, most immigrants do not hold jobs that most people would want to
hold. About 73.2 percent of immigrants have only a high school diploma or lower,
so they are quite limited as to what jobs they are able to hold (Batalova)
. Stephen Colbert, comedian and advocate for migrant workers recently spoke in
front of congress, and in his discourse, he stated: “it seems like one of the least
powerful people in the United States are migrant workers who come and do our
work but don't have any rights as a result. But yet we still invite them to come
here and at the same time ask them to leave. (Stephen)” Mr. Colbert has a point,
we use immigrants to our benefit, but we do not treat them as equals and give
them the benefits that an American worker would have. And these jobs are
necessary to us as well, “Every low-skilled, non-agricultural, temporary worker
who comes to the U.S. to fill a job that may otherwise be left open creates an
average of 4.64 U.S. jobs. These low-skilled jobs are the necessary backbone to
support higher-skilled positions” (Marczak).
One of the most dangerous jobs in the United States is meatpacking,
where many workers become disabled or mangled for life due to traumatic
injuries packing meat. Because they are “illegal
2
”, they are not taken to the
hospital in fear of sanctions and legal action. This can cause deaths and many
other shameful disfigurations and ailments to occur to these migrant workers.

1
American is a very deceiving word, because to many immigrants, and outsiders it seems
offensive and incorrect. This is due to the idea that all of North and South Americans are
“Americans.” When people say they are American, and that people from North and South
America are not, it makes quite a lot of people feel ostracized, especially when most
immigrants to the US today are from Mexico, and South America.
2
Illegal is a term for an undocumented immigrant that is commonly used. It has a very big
negative connotation however, and is frowned upon using because it really makes the
immigrants look deplorable, when in reality no human being is “illegal”.
This is a very common occurrence today, especially with over “15.5 percent [of
immigrants] work[ing] in production, transportation, and material moving
occupations; and 11.6 percent work[ing] in construction, extraction, and
maintenance occupations.”
On the other side of the social structure, immigrants that work in jobs that
require a degree simply cannot be undocumented, so it is almost irrelevant to
argue the point that they take away our jobs in this way. Nonetheless, many
Americans feel that any immigration is hurtful to our jobs. Documented, legal,
workers must go through the exact same screening process any other American
worker would have to go through in order to get a job. Any worker that receives
an occupation in this way is completely equal to any other worker, and if anybody
did not get the job in this way, it is simply because they were under-qualified, or
simply less qualified than their opposing interviewee.
In this way, it is easy to see that our jobs are, in fact, safe and the
argument of occupations being taken away seems like absolute folly.

The Economy
(N) The wealth and resources of a country or region, especially in terms of the production
and consumption of goods and services.

Along with the idea that immigrants come into the United States and take
all of our jobs, is the idea that they come here in order to take all of our money as
well. It is really important to understand that they are bringing many jobs to the
United States themselves. They are opening new restaurants, stores, inventing
new things, and much much more. The money gained by these immigrants also
is also spent in the US, which helps enrich the economy.
Immigrants are more likely to be entrepreneurial, and to start new
businesses, which create jobs and economic growth for both US-born workers,
and immigrants like themselves (Marczak). In 2011, immigrants started twenty
eight percent of all new businesses, and employed one in every ten US workers.
Immigrants represent about eighteen percent of all small businesses, which is
more than their share of the whole population (13 percent) (Batalova).
Immigrants and their parents founded over forty percent of all fortune 500
companies, and employed over 10 million people. “Alone, immigrants in fortune
500 companies employed over 3.6 million people, which is equivalent to the
population of Connecticut” (Partnership).
“If all immigrant workers were completely authorized, they would create
enough consumer spending to create a projected 750,000 to 900,000 jobs in the
US.” (Batalova) This basically sums up how important immigration can be, and
how influential it could be for us all.
As well as creating jobs and money by working, immigrants also create a
flow of money due to the taxes they pay, whether they are documented or
otherwise. This paying of taxes is about $1,800 more than the benefits that they
receive (Batalova). This is very unfair to them, but it does create revenue for the
United States simply by them being here.

The Beauty of Diversification
(n) The act or process of diversifying; state of being diversified

You might be thinking to yourself, ok all of this makes perfect sense, but
I’m not an economist (this fails if you are an economist), why would I care if the
US makes more money, or if more jobs are created for my fellow US citizens?
Well, first off, you should probably be a better human being. And second of all,
there are many other ways you are affected by immigration that you might not
even realize. Without immigration many of your tools, your favorite websites and
restaurants would not be real. Many of your favorite actors, inventors and
comedians would be gone as well. Without immigration, our country would be
nothing like it is today, and it would be barren, and boring.
Google, Procter & Gamble, Kraft, Colgate Palmolive, Pfizer, eBay, Apple,
AT&T, Budweiser, General Electric, IBM, and McDonald’s are among companies
with immigrant founders. Many immigrants are also responsible for some of our
most famous accomplishments, such an Albert Einstein, and his research with
nuclear weapons.


Family
(n) A group consisting of parents and children living together in a household

Arguably the most important issue that confronts us when speaking of
immigration is the fact that immigrants have families here in the United States.
This might seem like an obvious statement, but many people forget to realize that
when a person is deported back to their countries, they are often leaving behind
a family in the United States (Rodriguez).
Due to this, there are families in the United States that live in fear that their
family could be literally torn apart at any moment at all. Children that are left
alone, or with only one parent are more likely to join a gang, and cause problems
as they grow up. In some cases, families get Post Traumatic Stress, and most
have some sort of depression, or anxiety (Rodriguez).
When strong family bonds are such a huge part of most immigrant
cultures, the tearing apart of families in this way seems even more cruel. Not
many people would like to experience this feeling, but with these immigrant
families sometimes, it can be all that they have in life.



Final Thoughts

All in all, there are many advantages to immigration, and many reasons
why we, as US citizens should advocate for immigration reform. When
immigrants come to our country looking for safety and shelter, how can we leave
them out to dry? Many immigrants simply have no other way to live back where
they came from, and want a better life for themselves. What many would say to
this is question why they can’t come into the country legally. While this is a good
point, as seems to be a source of pride for many, it is also improbable to believe
that every person wishing to migrate could possibly have the resources, or social
status to complete all the requirements. Nobody want to become illegal, and a
fugitive (Huber). The only reason someone would do it, is because they have no
other way to enter the United States. The ways to get legal documentation are
extremely hard, and when the corrupt government that they are trying to run
away from is in charge of giving them their visas, it can become downright
impossible to migrate.
Because of this, I urge you to take action, and to talk to as many people as
you can about this issue. Speak to your representatives, your family and your
friends. The first step in any sort of reform is to get your voice heard.

















Works Cited

Batalova, Jeanne. "Frequently Requested Statistics on Immigrants and
Immigration in the United States." migrationpolicy.org. Migration Policy
institute, 9 Dec. 2010. Web. 7 May 2014.
Borjas, George J., Richard B. Freeman, and Lawrence F. Katz. "On the labor
market effects of immigration and trade." Immigration and the workforce:
economic consequences for the United States and source areas.
University of Chicago Press, 1992. 213-244.
Hawkins, John. "5 Reasons Illegal Immigrants Shouldn't Be Given American
Citizenship." Townhall Magazine 2 Feb. 2010: n. pag. Print.
Huber, Lindsay Pérez. "Challenging racist nativist framing: Acknowledging the
community cultural wealth of undocumented Chicana college students to
reframe the immigration debate." Harvard Educational Review 79.4
(2009): 704-730.
Marczak, Jason. "Get the Facts: Immigrants and the Economy - Five Reasons
Why the U.S. Economy Needs Immigrants." Americas Society/ Council of
the Americas, 12 Feb. 2013. Web. 7 May 2014.
Martin, Philip L., and Elizabeth Midgely. "Immigration to the United States."
Population Reference Bureau. N.p., 1999. Web. 2 May 2014"Partnership
for a New American Economy." The "New American" Fortune 500: n. pag.
Print.
Rodriguez, Cynthia Denise. "The Effects of Deportation on the Family." San Diego
State University: n. pag. Web. 7 May 2014.
Schlosser, Eric. "The Most Dangerous Job in America." Mother Jones, n.d. Web.
7 May 2014.
"Stephen Colbert & Farmworkers Take Fight to Congress." United Farm Workers,
7 July 2013. Web. 7 May 2014.