Tag Archives: immigration reform
What, if instead of proposing how to fix immigration, we first troubleshoot the problem in a similar manner as engineers or business people solve their problems? The opening question is:
How it got started?
Up to about one hundred years ago, almost every European who arrived at our shores was allowed to enter and settle. It is less known that about one-third of those arriving returned home a few years later. By the beginning of the 20th century, the majority of immigrants were from impoverished and overpopulated Eastern and Southern Europe. These mostly illiterate people formed ethnic enclaves in large American cities and became an eyesore to many Americans who were beginning to enjoy the benefits of their newfound prosperity. The federal government was asked to step in.
Why is it so hard to reach any reasonable compromise on the immigration issue? It is because faults of our immigration policy are about hundred years old and most of us are accustomed to accept them as unquestioned wisdom. The first comprehensive immigration law in the U.S., the Immigration Act of 1924 bears the sins of the times, which had barely been openly explained and duly criticized.
Why is it so hard to reach any reasonable consensus on immigration? In 2006, we failed to reform our immigration system. Seven years later things do not look much better. The current Senate Bill S.744 has many vocal opponents, and even its supporters agree that it is just a tiny step in the right direction. Similarly, it seems unlikely that the House will come up with any concept gaining widespread support either. Where is the problem? Let me ask a tricky question: who is more to blame – the Senate or the House? The right answer is: the WSJ editorial page editors. To be precise, the blame is on media in general, in particular on the concept of the editorial writing practiced since the inception of newspapers. In this text I pick on the WSJ as, to the misfortune of the editors there, this is the main paper I read regularly.
Something is missing in the passionately debated border security, as a part of the immigration overhaul. Advocates for increased border protection bring up the issue of the nation’s security as the main reason for all the elaborate and expensive border protection provisions. People sneaking throughout the border are mostly low skilled and seeking entry level jobs in the U.S. It is a mystery to me how by picking strawberries at American farms or cutting meat in American slaughterhouses they can endanger the nation’s security.