I do not intend for this site to be a space for debate–I am not interested in trying to explain to anyone why they should not be afraid of people that are a bit different from them! With that said, I feel that it still makes sense to lay out some of the reasons why I am committed to this issue. I hope many of my future blog posts will focus on positive stories and images the demonstrate the importance of immigrants to our country and culture,but, for now, here it goes:
Why a Southern Border Wall is Racist Nonsense
1. Look at a map of the United States. Why does, “you can’t have a country without borders,” (although some would say we’ve had a pretty good run) translate into, “you can’t have a country without a southern border wall.”
2. Net immigration from Mexico has been at or around zero for the last few cycles.
3. Historically there are less illegal immigrants than at the peak, and the percentage of illegal immigrants in the population has been stable for many years.
4. Immigrants, both legal and illegal, are less likely to commit crimes and end up in detention than native-born Americans.
5. Immigrants both create jobs and pay taxes.
6. The wall will cost at least $25 billion. Mexico will not pay for it.
7. Walls do not work.
8. Most illegal immigrants do not sneak across the border, but overstay legal visas.
9. With $25 billion we could shore up the health care system.
10. There have been no legitimate reports of terrorists sneaking across the Mexican border.
11. Many illegal immigrants arrive here by sea—part of the plan to build the wall included a huge cut to the budget of the coast guard.
12. There is simply not currently a legal path for 11 million illegal workers to stay here with our current system.
13. Illegal immigration would end in a matter of weeks if we imposed serious fines or criminal sanctions on the employers that are hiring so many workers.
14. We need a guest worker program.
15. We are a nation of immigrants—and not all legal ones. Many of our families came here illegally from Ireland, France, and Italy.
16. We are not blind and deaf to the racist rhetoric that is fueling this debate!
17. Much of the “wall/fence” that has already been built was done so with the use of illegal immigrant labor.
18. Our agricultural sector cannot withstand a further crackdown on immigrant labor—illegal immigrants pick most of our crops and tend most of our dairy cattle.
19. Many of the families being harassed by anti-immigration legislation have been here since before Anglo settlement.
20. Families are being split up and people are dying in fascist, corporate run, holding facilities for absolutely no reason.
21. “Show me your papers,” used to be a joke that we told about living in the Soviet Union.
22. Under global capitalism goods and money move freely across borders. Limiting the flesh and blood workers from doing so only empowers the governments that are happy to treat their own workers like slaves.
23. We are responsible through our foreign policy for many of the conditions that drive poor workers to our shore.
24. Some of the best small business people are immigrants.
25. Living in a country with a racist wall is an embarrassment and a disgrace.