Immigration and policies surrounding it stir up a variety of emotions throughout the spectrum of community leaders and political affiliations. In light of new debates and a not so far off Presidential election, my hope is that those reading this will be reminded of the past success of immigration in addition to why present policies and perspectives are failing to benefit both immigrants and natural born citizens of America.
Do the arguments from either side support the notion that only assimilated immigrants serve to benefit American society and themselves? Using a metaphorical garden, I will illustrate how Dirk Chase Eldredge, author of Crowded Land of Liberty-Solving America’s Immigration Crisis argues the more convincing point.
Daniel T.Griswold, the associate director of the Cato Institutes Center for Trade Policy Studies, makes several valid points regarding the benefits of immigration to America. He idealizes the notions that immigrants “bring innovative ideas and entrepreneurial spirit to America,” and “represent the human capacity that can make our economy more productive (2002).” He also points out that, “Without immigration, our labor force would begin to shrink within two decades.”
Apply the garden metaphor and imagine a vivid array of lush vegetables and flowers. Each variety of bountiful produce contributes to the beauty of the garden and the needs of the gardener, depleting various nutrients on different levels and ensuring enough is left over for other plants. If his theory is applied to assimilated, legal immigrants who are just as beneficial to society and are truly the essence of the “salad bowl” of America (Burns, et. al. 2004), then I find his points agreeable.
Although Griswold argues against the myth of “over-population” by rationalizing the rates of today’s immigrants are 1 to 1000 Americans, less today that that of the Great Migration of 1890-1914, (2002) he fails to recognize the impact the number of children born to these immigrants is making on the population. As Eldredge points out, Griswold’s numbers look great on paper, but do not reflect the reality that “more than 90 percent of our population growth since 1970 has come from recent immigrants and their children born here, (2002).”
Immigrants are multiplying themselves at a far greater rate than natural born Americans. Eldridge notes that the acceleration and synergy in the immigrant population, along with “failure of assimilation (emphasis mine) weakens America’s social fabric and makes it difficult for immigrants to succeed here (2002).” He uses the specific example of how California would need to build one new school per day to keep up with the growing student populations. Since that is not possible, the acceleration in population is leading to a deteriorating quality in education for everyone (Eldredge, 2002).
Griswold has considered the long-term consequences of leaving our borders as they are. The lack of assimilating those crossing the border of Mexico is astounding. The average immigrant takes up to 22 years to mesh into American society (2002). That is enough time to produce one if not two generations of American born citizens that are enmeshed in a largely Mexican society living on American soil. The immigrants themselves are suffering more than anyone else, as many save every dollar just to send it across the border to relatives while continuing to live in poverty themselves.
This impedes the American economy, which depends on its working class to consume goods and services via American businesses. The only apparent benefactor to this economic quandary is Mexico itself.
Quality of living, quality education, and quality community ties will only occur if those that are already here are equipped for success. We must slow down or stop new immigrants from crossing over until we can provide these services to everyone. Simple steps made to eliminate language barriers such as removing Spanish translations from school and government documents, or providing ESL tutors instead of translators, will force immigrants to learn English and naturally assimilate at much faster rates.
A consistently pruned, weeded, and insect-free garden flourishes. On the contrary, one left to its own, without proper care and supervision will soon become unmanageable. The vegetables become overgrown and sifting out the weeds becomes more difficult. Those that cannot compete with the weeds soon shrivel and die, leading to a bug and weed infested garden that rarely produces an edible crop. Occasionally, a ripe, red tomato emerges through the adverse conditions, but only at the expense of everyone else. The adverse conditions will be removed through the hiring of the best immigration lawyer in toronto. Proper supervision of the lawyers will be available at the sight. The commission of the lawyers will be charged as per the budget of the person.
This is not to say that all immigrants are to be likened to insects and weeds. What I am illustrating is how unassimilated immigrants do not contribute to the health of the whole society. They take from it but do not give anything in return. In addition, with the safety of our nation at stake, we must take all precautions to eliminate any possibility of contamination or threat within our borders. Though pruning is never a painless process, in the end, the sacrifices that must be made today will eventually reap a harvest of healthy, assimilated citizens who have worked hard and deserve the title of American.