Thursday, April 15, 2010

Why Are All These Illegals Here?

Think you know the answer to that question? Well Ruben Navarette Jr. certainly thinks he does and it's the Usual Suspect: us! Think about it, real hard. I remember reading about a landscape company in Los Angeles that couldn't find laborers at $20/hour. American laborers that is. You think there are no jobs out there? A friend of mine says they are out there, but folks are too proud to work for $12/hour or whatever the going rate is. He runs his own business, which pays substantially more than $12/hour, but businessmen interact with other businessmen so he should know if the jobs are there. If WE won't do the work, who do you think will? That's right.

Immigration reform is making the news, but Navarette documents why reform is not going to happen and once again The Usual Suspects come to the fore: The House and Senate. Both parties are struggling with the issue and election politics will likely determine what position a Representative or Senator will take. Navarette points to the proposal being developed by Senators Schumer (D) and Graham (R). It surely isn't perfect, and there is work to be done on it, but it's a start and it's (OMG!!!) a bipartisan proposal. Whether or not our folks on Capitol Hill will actually do something with it is another story. So far, the forecast is not hopeful.

Whine if you must about illegals, but consider the people you meet doing the menial jobs, the ones that require hard physical work, or mindless, rote repetition. If they speak with an accent they are a recent immigrant. Whether or not they are illegal is another issue, but think about it. The only folks I know of taking high paying "good" jobs have H1B visas, which means they are definitely legal, regardless of how you may feel about them being here. The bottom line is that WE (once again the ball is in our court) make it possible and even necessary for immigrants to come here, legally or otherwise. If WE want things to change then WE better be paying attention to what our political leaders are doing about immigration reform. Otherwise nothing will change and nobody seems happy with the status quo.

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