Send illegals home - pronto!
Stu Bykofsky | Send illegals home - pronto!
GOD STRIKE ME dead if I am anti-immigrant.
My four grandparents were immigrants. I love the America that gave them refuge and I wouldn't deny America's bosom to others who arrive legally.
Immigrants do bring - and always have brought - magic to America: talent, energy, ambition. Their food, their music, their fashions - all enrich us. They may be the best Americans because they are the truest believers in the American Dream. Their suitcases are stuffed with boundless hope.
Germans, Latvians, Nigerians, Irish, Italians, Polish, Mexicans, Jamaicans, Russians, and others from everywhere have made America better.
That's why I sing the song of those who arrived legally.
The politically correct, sense-neutral terms are "undocumented workers" and "immigrants," but those who didn't arrive legally are - let's not mince words - illegal aliens and criminals, by definition.
It's a bad idea to open the book on a new life in a new land by breaking its laws.
Watching the rally at Independence Mall last week I was struck by the dazzling chutzpah of illegal aliens' demands to be left alone by the government, like a teenager shrugging off a nagging mother.
They were complaining about legislation - the Border Protection, Anti-Terrorism and Illegal Immigration Control Act - that would make them felons and boot them out of the U.S.A.
But - oh! In Philadelphia, the restaurant industry is heavily dependent on bracero labor. Elsewhere in the nation, agriculture and construction leans heavily on "undocumented" workers to do the back-breaking work.
Who would do that work if we had no "uninvited guests?" we're asked.
Um, the same people who did it before they arrived: Low-income Americans.
Americans won't work for so little money, we're told.
Yes they will, because they have.
And if they won't, unleash capitalism and hike the pay until they will. If that means I may pay more for produce, or a restaurant meal, I'm OK with that.
One reason the pay scale remains low is that illegals will work for less - less than minimum wage in some cases. They underbid American workers.
While the illegals are lawbreakers, they are also victims of unscrupulous employers who pay them too little, or not at all, figuring they'll be too scared to go to the police.
Last October the Marathon Grill chain, under the scrutiny of the Department of Labor, agreed to pay nearly $21,000 in back wages to workers - half of them Mexicans - who were cheated.
Employers who break the law by hiring illegals should not just be fined, they should be jailed. They create a demand for illegals, then enjoy an advantage over competitors who play fair and pay fair.
The Pew Hispanic Center last year exploded the myth that illegals come here because they are starving at home. Researchers reported 95 percent of illegals had jobs at home. They came here for jobs that pay more (even if low-paying by U.S. standards), and pushed Americans out.
If need for money overrides law, why not forgive burglary, too?
To get the Border Protection Act passed, the government's playing up the fear of terrorism, saying it's dangerous to have millions of people we have no record of roaming around the country.
While that's true, mostly it's just so we won't look mean when we expel them, as if we don't have a right to control our borders.
We do have that right and we should, even if it means adios to illegal aliens - and hello to higher restaurant prices.