The Flip Side to Immigration Essay
Thesis: Although there are many arguments in favor of closing the borders, the opposing argument for increasing legal immigration has a many benefits as well INTRODUCTION: Of course border control and immigration are something you have all heard mentioned whether its by people you know, on the news, or you’ve read about it online. But the majority of the time when I hear this being mentioned, I am hearing the argument in favor of closing the border and cracking down on illegal immigrants however, today I am going to be arguing in favor of increasing legal immigration Establish credibility: My home town of Uvalde, is just about an hour from the border, and with my dads job in agriculture being heavily affected by the amount of workers that come over from Mexico I have began to see this argument from a different perspective Motivate to listen: This is something that before doing a lot of research I didn’t realize how it could affect me in anyway, but I’ve learned that it definitely does affect me since I am going to be out in the work field soon along side many immigrant workers, just like many of you will, or may be already. Thesis: Although there are many arguments in favor of closing the borders and tightening up security, the opposing argument for increasing legal immigration has a many benefits as well
Main points: The reasons why I feel we should increase legal immigration are 1) lack of employees for low wage jobs in the U.S. right now 2) we are spending so much time and money on securing the borders when we should be making the process easier and increasing legal immigration because it would actually stimulate the economy Transition: First I am going to explain in more depth the benefits specifically in relation to the economy.. BODY
I. Despite the common belief, research shows that increasing legal immigration would be beneficial for the economy; because it would provide businesses that in need of cheap labor with many workers A. There is currently a lack of low wage workers in the U.S. – people aren’t wanting to work manual labor jobs or work for minimum wage anymore 1. The Washington Post conducted a survey and it states that in 2006, 77% of all agricultural workers in the United States were foreign-born. (Plumer, 2013) 2. The fact that these workers were willing to work low wage jobs, directly effected the U.S. However there is an uprising factor that is causing lack of workers for these farms. The fact that Mexico is getting richer. Therefore, even if we were to make the legal immigration process easier for workers to come get jobs, the U.S. farmers would have to raise their pay to keep up with Mexico’s rising economy. B. Although the majority believes there will be lack of jobs and lower wages with an increase of immigrants, its actually the opposite.
1. the CBO, congressional budget office, estimates that over the next two decades the S. 744 , which is an immigration modernization reform , would increase economy growth, lower the federal deficit, increase housing demand, increase the size of the labor force, raise long-term wages 2. “According to a 2010 survey of the economic literature …. the Brookings Institute concluded that, ******”The most recent academic research suggests that, on average, immigrants raise the overall standard of living of American workers by boosting wages and lowering prices.” (Matthews, 2013) As you can see the affects it would have is actually quite different than from what you’ve been told or what you may have previously assumed about immigration. Although people are worried that more immigrants will lead to less jobs, because native born workers would be competing for the same jobs, but as the research has shown it would increase the labor force. And many businesses, such as my dads, would benefit from these workers Transition: Now that you are more aware of the economic benefits of increasing immigration, I am going to explain the downside of securing the border II. There are currently 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. I feel that instead of focusing on deportation and securing the borders we should put more of an effort into making the immigration process easier.
A quote by Scott Walker, the Wisconsin Governor states “So often…..people look at the symptoms, not at the larger problem. The symptom is whatever the number of people who are currently in this country illegally. The larger problem is there is not an effective way to come in the front door. (Walker, 2013) A. Over the past decade we have put a lot of tax money towards strengthening our border 1. “It is estimated that between 2000 and 2010, U.S. taxpayers spent $90 billion on securing the U.S.-Mexico border.” (The Costs and Benefits, 2013) 2. I believe that to invest even more money in border security would be a waste of taxpayer dollars B. Then looking at the actual process of applying for U.S. citizenship for those of us who haven’t had to consider it since we were born in here. It is a very complicated process 1. Each individual citizenship process will differ depending on how far along you are, but most all cases take more than several years. 2. If you are starting from the very beginning, meaning that neither of your parents are US citizens. You would first have to migrate to the US and become a legal permanent resident. This alone can take a few years, and you have to remain in the US and establish permanent residency for 5 years, without any extended absences. Just after this you are able to apply for naturalization. (which costs $680 to apply for).
The actual US citizenship application process can then take another 6mos to a year or longer. Once they accept your application you then will be scheduled for a test and interview. This is also something that may take time depending on the waiting list for the location of citizenship you are filing for. After this test, between 1 and 180 days on average you are able to take the oath of citizenship and become a citizen of the us. C. Although time is one of the main hurdles immigrants face, money is also a big issue when immigrants consider becoming citizen 1. For one individual the $680 to apply for naturalization is a big number. But when considering a whole family, that number can be really discouraging 2. Money is initially the reason that most people want to migrate to the US, however, the cost to get over here is so high that most of them cant afford it. Transition: As you are able to see.. it is a lengthy and expensive process CONCLUSION When looking at this argument again after being informed of the opposing side, I hope that increasing legal immigration will seem very beneficial. Of course each side has significant points and you cant overlook the arguments on either side. But as citizens, it is crucial to know what is going on with our borders and how it is affecting the economy and work force that we are already in or about to be in.
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