Friday, February 13, 2004

OK. This really is stupid.

By: Ed

The path to hell is paved with good intentions, as the saying goes. Most supporters of President Bush's proposal to grant illegal aliens the right to work are now on that path and taking the country with them.

These supporters cannot be entirely to blame as the proposals principles look good on paper and appeal to the basic human emotion of compassion, which as many know, overrides reason. Unfortunately, the plan is lacking. It is full of holes and without an explanation as to how its objectives are to be carried out.

Under the proposal, legal and illegal aliens, for a small fee of course, could obtain the right to work legally for three years. This right can be renewed, but the limits are yet to be determined. This would allow us to document the illegal aliens in the country and have them pay taxes.

Only a limited number of immigrants will be given this privilege. Bush says that an employer must make every attempt to allow a US citizen to be hired first and if none can be found, the job goes to a non-citizen in the program.

This plan allows non-citizens to do our minimum-wage, dirty work. With this new ability to quickly gain a legal job, immigrants will send in applications by the gross. Turning into what workers unions call scabs, it would be fairly easy to threaten your higher paid workers with newly legal immigrants more than willing to work for minimum wage. The company needs only to announce that the job doesn't pay what the workers want and so must have immigrant workers.

Once these newly legal aliens are in the country, the problem of removing them after there work time expires presents itself. After all, the illegal aliens of the present have already proven that they are willing to break the law and risk national security to stay in the country for less than minimum wage and poor working conditions. Bush is proposing that the social security collected be set aside and paid to those in the program after they return to their country. This provides a monetary incentive for their homecoming.

Minimum wage in North Carolina is $5.15 per hour. This is about what an immigrant can expect doing the jobs nobody else wants. Working 40 hours a week, every week, for three years provides about $2,400 for social security. This is hardly enough to make a worker want to return home when they can stay illegally, after gaining easy entrance, and continue working and sending the money back home. Money sent back to Mexico from the United States accounts for Mexico's second largest source of foreign income. If the workers do decide to go back to their homeland, the taxes gained from their work are only given back to them in the form of a pitiful pay-off to leave.

President Bush says that rewarding illegal aliens for breaking the law is not his goal and this plan would not influence the decision for their Green card or citizenship. He also insists that this is not amnesty, but allowing illegal aliens to work legally without the consequences of their previous actions is amnesty. Allowing those who broke the law to work is also a slap in the face to everyone who spent years applying and paying expensive legal fees to obtain a Green card legally.

The country receives little to no taxes while allowing an easy access to our country for immigrants that probably won't leave, causing a strain on the economy. Our country does not stand to gain much with this new proposal, but Bush does. According to the 2000 census, persons of Hispanic or Latino origin make up about 12.5 percent of our countries 284,796,887 population. This means there are about 35,599,610 votes that traditionally go toward Democratic candidates and could now be swayed to vote Bush this fall. There is the true reason.