Thursday, March 30, 2006

A follow up to my thread on immigration...

The other night, while I was on my way home from work (at 12:45 AM), I had the XM on and was tuned to channel 166, good old AmericaRight. Anyway, Michael Reagan was on, and he was talking about this immigration bill. He had one person saying that the economy was going to tank if the flow of the 1+ million illegal immigrants per year stopped, and another that said it would tank if it continued. I don't know either way, because you can never get a good count on how many people actually come in per year, and even if you could, you'd never get good data on how much each of them cost the American tax payers.

What I did get from the discussion was Mike Reagan's four-point plan for future immigration, which I partially agree with...You'll see why...

Part 1 - Double the number of legal immigrants let in per year.
Part 2 - Make each immigrant demonstrate the ability to read, write, and speak English. (At what level, I don't know)
Part 3 - All violent criminals (rape, murder, assault, etc) are barred from entering this country. Period.
Part 4 - For the first seven years that you are in this country, you (and your family) are not eligible for any federal money. No welfare, no Medicare, no small business loans, no federal college loans or Pell Grants, etc.

What I like:
First of all, I was stoked (that's right, I said stoked) to hear that Mike was calling for all immigrants to be required to read, speak, and write English. While it is not the official language of the United States (we don't have one, btw), it should be. I'm tired of people in this country not knowing how to speak English. This goes for the people working at the Lukoil on 38 and Hartford, who can't figure out the difference between cash and credit, the people sweeping and making pizzas at Gaetano's, et al. I mean, if you let people into this country that can't speak English, how can they assimilate? Let me tell you, folks, assimilation is what this country is all about. I'm not telling you that every person needs to look, speak, and feel alike. But, when my ancestors came to this country many moons ago (on my mother's side) from Poland and the Ukraine (via Canada), they had to do one thing to take care of their family: get a job. Back then, you didn't have Babelfish or GoogleTranslations, you either spoke English or you didn't. To get a job, you needed to speaka-de-engeris... Whether you were from Russia, China, Spain, etc, you needed to speak english to have a job and make money. How would you communicate with your boss? Hand signals? No dice, my friends...These people learned English the hard way, because they were forced to. They couldn't' live otherwise. Today, there's a faction in our country that wants to allow everyone to keep their languages, and make everyone else adapt to speak with them. This is totally ridiculous, as far as I'm concerned. If they want to be here, they need to learn to speak English, not spanglish, not ruskie-lish, ENGLISH.

I was also very happy to hear that no violent criminals would be allowed in, period. Unfortunately, trying to get prison records from places like Zimbabwe and Nicaragua might pose difficult.

The last part of the plan I'm ecstatic about. This is the crux of my argument...I mean, these people are coming into the country illegally and are giving birth to their children in our hospitals, instantly making the children US citizens. Then, who's going to deport a mother and keep her child here? You? Me? Who's going to pay for that child's well-being? I say, build a big ass wall along the entire freaking US/Mexico border, have a 10K strong military force down there with orders to shoot to kill if they see people trying to cross the wall. This will stop them from trying and make that situation I mentioned above much more difficult. Anyway, I digress. If you stop these people from getting any sort of federal aid, they will stop coming here. If you turn them away at hospitals and give them nothing, they'll leave! If the states would start passing more stringent laws regarding business owners employing illegal immigrants, people will stop hiring them. I mean, the only way to really stop illegal immigration is to starve them out...Metaphorically, of course.

I'm not advocating that we put them in a prison and give them nothing but bread and water for the rest of their days. What I am saying is that if you take away their sources of income (illegal work, federal benefits), they'll go home and either try to come here LEGALLY or find work there. This, over time, will stop the influx of illegals.

The first point of Mike's plan (and the last thing I'll speak about) is doubling the amount of legal immigrants that can come to the US per year. Now, I know what you're thinking...Joe, if we stop all illegal immigration and double the number of legal immigrants, we're going to wind up in the same pickle. I would tend to agree with you, if we were not also following the other rules mentioned above. If we were providing them with federal benefits for nothing, then yes, we'd be in the exact same situation...But we wouldn't be. They'd need to find a place to live, work, and yes, assimilate on their own. Make them find legal work and pay taxes, just like the rest of us. In seven years, they can become eligible for college funding, military service, and best of all, the chance to become a US citizen, with all rights and duties.

Hey, if my mother's family could do it, so can these people.

In closing, just a little story about a friend of mine that used to work at Staples. One day, she was stocking shelves, when a small, middle-aged Asian man came in. He asked her if they sold "ca-fo-kis" and said it really quickly. She asked him to repeated it several times, slowly, but she was still unable to understand him, and thinking that he had said "coffee cakes," she replied, "No sir. This is Staples. We don't sell coffee cakes here. Try xxx food store." Obviously frustrated, he yelled at her "CA-FO-KIS, CA-FO-KIS, POKEMON!!!" She realized then that he wanted Pokemon cards for kids. She showed him that up near the registers, they had a few novelty card sets, and Pokemon cards were among them. He seemed happy to hear that, and then asked her if they sold "reeea pus piiiiins". Again, she couldn't understand him, so she asked him to repeat it, and again he did, several times. At the end, he got so frustrated that he asked "WATS A MATTA, YOU NO SPEAKA ENGERIS"??? The guy was actually looking for red push pins...

So, make sure you speak the language before you insult someone who can't understand you...