Get ready for the next surge.
It’s part of the $40 billion madness being collapsed into the immigration reform legislation to secure our southern border.
How does procuring and deploying enough aircraft and equipment plus expanding agents from the existing 18,000 to 38,000 to put the Border Patrol on equal footing with the five branches of military service do anything to reform immigration? The proposed legislation should be called the full employment act for the American Defense Industry.
Both sides of the aisle in Washington, D.C., are acting as if they are fighting a war instead of trying to address immigration issues.
Everyone needs to take a deep breath — the advocates for illegals, those that favor building a 21st century version of the Berlin Wall, those illegals who believe they have an absolute right to be here, and those who want to send every immigrant — illegals and otherwise — packing.
Let’s look at reality. There is a serious shortage of farm workers. We are educating foreigners in our colleges and then — when they want to use the knowledge they’ve gained to make a better life and to help strengthen America — we refuse their request to stay here. Instead we send them back home so they can help build economies that undermine us.
Equally absurd is how we educate illegals who arrived here when they were young, cover the tab of their education through public school and even partially through college and then we want to deport them.
We limit high-tech work visas because we’re convinced it will cost Americans jobs. What costs American jobs is our failure to stay competitive and innovative in an ever-changing global marketplace.
Against this backdrop, we put a price on being an American guest worker or attaining status as a naturalized citizen that makes King George look as if he sided with the common man.
There is no limit on guest workers who are superstar athletes.
If you doubt that consider the just crowned National Hockey League championship Chicago Blackhawks team. They have 13 out of 27 players that are from Canada. There are four Blackhawks from Eastern Europe and five from Sweden. The number of players that don’t need special work permits from Uncle Sam? There are just five Americans.
So where is the ranting and raving about how foreigners on work permits are stealing $1 million-a-year-jobs from American born hockey players?
Why not treat them like foreign workers seeking high tech visas? That way the federal government would limit the number allowed in all sports to perhaps 10 or 20 a year while limiting a team to just one such player. Then entrance into the United States would be delayed for years.
As for wrestling with how illegals can get citizenship, why isn’t there a cry and a hue about foreigners who can buy American citizenship by simply investing $1 million — and sometimes less — into this country’s economy?
Investors in the Trails at Manteca, a 1,400-home planned neighborhood in southwest Manteca, are buying citizenship in such a manner by investing money in the firm developing the project so infrastructure can be built. It is justified because they are creating American jobs with their money.
The irony of it is there in all likelihood will be men who have spent 20 to 30 years in this country living under the radar while helping build houses who would be deported if an Immigration and Customs Enforcement raid took place on the project once it started.
But the fabulously rich foreigner that seeks dual citizenship so they can have a lifestyle that fulfills their dreams gets the red carpet treatment.
Their only contribution to America is money.
Gee, do you see a pattern? If you are a talented athlete and can command millions of dollars or an existing millionaire from another land you get express and preferred treatment for work permits and fast track, luxury service to citizenship.
Bust your tail working 12 to 14 hours in the fields so Americans can enjoy low-cost food and you get the bum’s rush.
If farmers could wine and dine Congress and provide them with luxury boxes at hockey and basketball games, maybe they will get a guest worker permit program put in place that assures crops won’t rot in the fields.
We don’t need carte blanches citizenship for every illegal currently in the country.
Nor do we have to throw our doors wide open and let all comers enter even if it is just as guest workers.
What is going on now neither reflects the principles that America was built on, helps our economy, or makes much sense unless you are part of the super rich class.
Topping everything are statistics that show illegal entry into this country from the south has dropped off significantly.
That’s a clue that — to paraphrase a politician of note — “it’s the economy, stupid.”
Most coming across the border illegally do so in search of a better life. Given job conditions of the past years jobs aren’t as easy to purse as they once were.
What is needed is a policy that addresses the needs of our economy and balances it with what makes America unique as a nation that was founded and built on the backs and dreams of immigrants.
This column is the opinion of executive editor, Dennis Wyatt, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Bulletin or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 209-249-3519.