Joe Klein on Immigration

Immigration just has never been as big an issue to me as it apparently is to many others this year. Living in Michigan, we’ve just never had a problem with Canadians illegally sneaking over the border and, as far as I’m concerned, if they were to start taking boats across the Detroit River I’m not too worried about kicking them out. I’ve never taken that close a look on the impact of immigrants in other parts of the country so I may be wrong, but I tend to feel as Joe Klein does on this, even if not as extremist or as wildly in favor:

I tend to be an extremist on this issue. I am wildly in favor of immigration, legal and illegal. I realize that national security–i.e. terrorism–requires that we secure the borders, and that’s a good thing, if almost impossible. But as a New Yorker, I’m deeply grateful to the immigrants, many of them illegal, who saved the city by bringing commerce (and sales tax revenues) to some of the toughest neighborhoods in the 1970s and 1980s. I’ve found that any Haitian willing to get in a rickety boat and risk all to get here is going to be an aggressive, entrepreneurial hard-working American when he or she arrives. In an unscientific sample, I’ve also found that 98.9% of all Latinos who cross our southern border looking for work are just fabulous, hardworking people.

I find the tendency of some of the Republicans running for President to play to our very worst instincts–and I mean racism, in this case–is just nauseating. A few months ago, I asked Mitt Romney if he thought illegal immigration was a net economic plus or minus. He said…he wasn’t sure (but, of course, he knows that it’s a net plus).

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  1. 1
    b-psycho says:

    The ironic thing about all the fuss over immigration is that the ones yelling loudest would NEVER accept the most obvious solution: make the legal kind easier.

    If it were seriously about security concerns then they’d have it so that as long as you weren’t a known criminal you could come & go as you pleased. In such a system, the only ones that would still try to sneak in undetected would be the ones that actually want to hurt people — a microscopic amount compared to the usual immigrant. It’d be simpler, more direct, and fair, why don’t they do it? Because the constituency that they’re talking to really opposes ALL immigration, conveniently forgetting how their ancestors got here in the first place.

    That reminds me: a couple days ago I stumbled across a site selling this t-shirt. Considering some of the other shirts on the site, I suspect some people buying it don’t realize what it means…

  2. 2
    Naughten says:


    It is very economically advantageous to use cheap Mexican seasonal agricultural guest workers; it is very socially and economically disadvantageous to let them stay after the crop is harvested.

    With each deportation, America looks, smells, and sounds less like socially and economically deplorable Mexico.

    The Mexican dream of regaining political control over Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California is turning into their worst nightmare.

    No advanced civilization can coexist side by side with a retarded civilization, without a great wall or fence, strict guest labor laws, and armed border guards.

    Mexico is land rich in natural resources; what makes it so socially and economically retarded are its Mexican People; and wherever they immigrate they bring their deporable civilization with them – it is so deplorable than none of them want to return to it.

    With the deportation of all the illegal immigrants, students will again be able to get good paying summer jobs, to learn responsibility and earn their way through college; blue-collar wages will rise; border towns will not be slums; Spanish will not be a second language; crime will go down; hospitals and prisons will not be overcrowded

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