Illegal Immigration

By: Roger Sheppard
By: Roger Sheppard

Some facts instead of demagoguery

The issue of illegal immigration is getting a lot of play in this year's presidential race. And it's bound to get a lot more as November draws closer. It is such a complex issue but I think there are a few key points that must be made. First, we have to face the fact that it would be impossible to find and export every person who is in this country illegally. You can argue about what rights those people should and should not have. But the fact remains: they are here and any effort to round up ALL of them - the ones who work hard and contribute to our economy as well as those who continually break the law ---will bankrupt this nation, turn us into a country of bounty-hunters, or both. Second. Every nation has a right to secure borders. The U.S. has two good reasons to secure its borders. One is to screen and try to prevent terrorists from sneaking into our midst. The second is to prevent an absolute flood of people from over-running this country. Third. If we permit anyone and everyone who wants to come to this country to do so, regardless of their ability to speak English or interest in learning English, we risk creating a permanent under-class of people, who will always have to hide in the shadows and not fully participate in the social life of this country. If they can't vote, if they don't pay taxes, they won't have a legitimate voice in the nation's affairs. And a large number of people, who are denied a legal voice in their country, can turn that country upside down as the gap between the "haves" and the "have-nots" grows ever wider. No one wants to give the estimated 20 million illegal immigrants in this country a free pass toward citizenship or reward them for coming into this country illegally while their fellow countrymen back home have had to wait their turn. But as I said at the beginning, it would be impossible to round them all up and send them back to where they came from. Anyone who thinks that is the answer is out of touch with reality. We must find a way to do the following: 1. Secure our borders to screen for terrorists and to make sure that one population group is not allowed to so freely enter this country, that we have to limit people from other parts of the world who may want to do the same. 2. Send any and all illegal immigrants whom we find breaking minor laws in this country back home, and incarcerate those convicted of committing more serious crimes and ship home when their jail time is finished 3. And create incentives for law-abiding illegals to pay realistic fines and get in line for citizenship. If we fail to bring illegals out of the shadows and get them involved in our laws and our society, we risk the collapse of our country, not from without - but from within.
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