This article appeared in essentially its submitted form, in the Waco Tribune-Herald, on Saturday, July 7, 2018. It takes on the immigration and refugee problems, which are but one piece of a larger pattern that I see as the gradual nazification of America. That is a path to our destruction as a nation.
The Immigration Problem
There are really three separate parts to the general immigrant problem: temporary guest workers, refugees (asylum), and undocumented children (DACA). These are all quite different. There is no one-size-fits-all thing to do about them, no matter how inconvenient that might be for politics.
Temporary Guest Workers:
There two categories here, termed “skilled” and “unskilled” workers. Skilled workers (and families) get H2 visas, and there aren’t very many of these. This category is not a worry for our purposes here.
Unskilled workers also divide into “agricultural” and “other”. The agricultural workers and their families get H1A visas, and are also known as “migrant farm workers”. The “other” get H1B visas, and many of these also bring their families.
Most of these “other” are in construction work, and more recently lawn care and many other unskilled jobs. The quota for H1A and H1B visas is not strictly enforced (there being some exceptions granted once the cap is reached), but generally speaking, there are only something like 100,000 to 150,000 of these in any given year. The term of the visa is only a year. The idea behind them is “seasonal work”.
The size of the labor market these people fill is a big chunk of the number of undocumented aliens in the US: something like 10 or 12 million people. Assuming an immigrant family is two adults and 4 kids, and that both adults work, that’s at least about 3-4 million jobs they fill. Fewer kids, more jobs.
The market demand is thus quite out-of-line with the legal supply: 3-4 million jobs to fill, versus 100,000 to 150,000 guest worker visas available, in any given year. These people have to eat, so they will come to the US for that work, they have no other feasible choice.
They will come legally if possible, illegal if not, precisely because they have no real choice. These numbers say most will have to come illegally, as forced by the unrealistically low quotas.
This has been going on for many decades. No one should be in the least surprised by this! For those same many decades, congresses and administrations, one after another, have failed us on this issue.
Because these workers are largely illegal, it is easy to extort hard work out of them for really crummy pay. That is definitely unethical, if not illegal, abuse. If these workers were legal, pay in those jobs would likely be higher, and some Americans might even want some of those jobs.
As it is, most Americans do not want those jobs at all, precisely because the work is hard, the conditions very bad, and the pay really lousy.
The common-sense “fix” is easy: raise the visa quotas to be in-line with the size of the labor market these workers serve. This will cost you a few more government workers to process and manage the visas, but as guest worker pay improves, you will need to supply less welfare support to their families. The size of this population may drop some, over time, as more Americans take some of those jobs.
Demonizing for political purposes this population of guest workers, mostly from Mexico, is nothing but racism masquerading as national security or public safety, there can be no doubt about that. The statistics prove there are actually fewer real criminals among this population, than among Americans at large. That eliminates the only “excuse”.
Fixing this problem properly is the “right thing to do”, and it is actually a moral imperative. Hold your representation accountable: it is their job to fix this, and they have not. And there is no defendable excuse for that lack.
This is a different problem, and a different (much smaller) population of people. These are mostly people from a handful of failed-state Central American countries, who are fleeing for their very lives. The types and kinds of violence vary, but the effect is the same: certain death.
Under our laws and policies as they have been until very recently, every such refugee has the right to come to our border and ask for asylum. They have the right to have an immigration judge decide their case in a timely fashion. Since there is no one to ask on the Mexican side, they have the implied right to step over our border and ask an official on the American side.
It is easy enough to tell who the bona fide refugees really are. A child will cling to its real parent, but will have to be restrained by any bad actor using that child as a means of disguise. A nursing mother is no smuggler, trafficker, or gang member. Many of these people may have been brought here by such, but they are not such. (The same is true of illegal guest workers.)
This does require a real, mature, experienced human being to decide properly, not some underpaid dropout with nothing but a rule book to follow by rote.
Recently, we have seen an unfolding crisis on our border with an unconscionable change in policy.
Policy now criminalizes any non-citizen stepping over the border for any purpose. Thus these people were arrested for prosecution and their children taken from them. This was explicitly stated by some in the administration to be a deterrent to other border crossers, including future refugees seeking asylum.
A court has recently ordered these children be reunited with their parents. The government’s obvious difficulties tracing where these kids actually are, speaks directly to the intended harsh policy: there never was any original intention to reunite anybody. Instead, children were to be taken and essentially interned or fostered-out, and the adults summarily deported. The President has as much as said so.
I have to point out this evil for what it actually is: abusing refugees, particularly children, for nothing but political gain. The second House immigration bill that recently failed has exactly that political gain embedded in it: getting Democrats to agree to fund the border wall that we really do not need, using both DACA and these interned children as bait. Even the moderate Republicans backed away from this evil, which is why it failed by a large margin. And evil it is, to ruin lives for political gain.
You fix this by not criminalizing stepping across the border to ask for asylum. The demand is higher of late, so you simply put more immigration judges in place to still get this done in a timely fashion. That actually greatly reduces detention housing costs while the cases are considered. And, you quit putting conditions on the kind of violence we will accept as a justification: death is just death. That certainty is what those people fled in the first place, in spite of the dangers along the way.
Since both laws and policies require change, this is something that both congress and the administration must do, no one else can. Hold them accountable: there is an election this fall!
Undocumented Children (DACA):
These are the children brought here illegally, mostly by illegal guest workers. These children had no choice. They fell into a sort-of unaddressed limbo in our immigration policies and laws. Congress after congress, and president after president, failed to deal with this. The previous President tried a stopgap measure. The current President is undoing that, and is using this issue as part of the bait to get what he wants politically.
The statistics show that the vast majority of these kids have well-assimilated into America, getting educated, getting jobs. They have become exactly what we like to see in our citizenry. There needs to be a way to make citizens of people like that, and currently there is not one. That is what you fix.
It starts with some sort of interview or hearing to weed out the bad actors, but we have to ensure that this process cannot be abused the way the asylum process recently has been. That’s the short-term solution. It requires actions from both congress and the administration, and only you (at the ballot box) can hold them accountable for it.
The long-term solution depends upon properly solving the other two problems: temporary guest workers, and refugees seeking asylum. Solve those properly, and the undocumented child (DACA) problem naturally goes away, in about a generation. At that point, your only remaining illegals really will be the smugglers, traffickers, and gang members.
How to Get These Done
Step 1. No matter which party you favor, ditch the politics! Don’t fall for the propaganda from either side (and it is loud and voluminous)! Find out the facts for yourself. Use your logic and your knowledge of people to figure out what the truth really is, which is always one whale-of-a-lot more complicated than some idiotic political sound-bite slogan. If you really do this, I think you will reach conclusions fairly similar to mine.
Step 2. Decide what you want done about these problems. I think that if you really honestly did step 1, you will pretty much generate the same to-do list that I did.
Step 3. Communicate what you want done, and why, to your representation in Congress and in the White House. In that communication, let them know that you are watching for outcomes, and that you will hold them accountable. The addresses are well known, and obtainable on the internet. You can now contact them by email, but a paper letter sent by surface mail is still more impressive.
Step 4. Actually hold them accountable at election time! If they cannot be statesmen and do the people’s business instead of politics-as-usual, they are just not someone you want to hold the offices, so try somebody else. Simple as that.
The next election is this November.
These immigration/refugee issues are just one piece of the ongoing nazification of America. There is also the leader-who-can-do-no-wrong cult. And there is chronic and widespread government lying about what is being done and why. The means and details are different than 1930's Germany, but the overall strategies and outcomes are exactly the same.
First, there is the in-group/out-group thing to inflame passionate support. Groups are selected for scapegoating, then demonization, then abuse, then elimination. Same pattern as Nazi Germany, only the details are different: for immigrants, separations and deportations instead of gas chambers and ovens. Note also what is being said about political opponents. This is quite widespread.
Second, there is the leader-who-can-do-no-wrong cult, which historically always leads to dictatorship. Followers support him rabidly, despite all facts, and all the evident harm he brings them. Exact same pattern as Nazi Germany. Only the details are different, and not by very much.
Examples include tariffs in a trade war that will destroy heartland businesses, a huge increase in the national debt to “finance” a tax cut that is 90+% for the super-rich, and borderline treason by a leader who cozies up to vicious dictators like Putin and Kim Jong Un, while insulting the leaders of our allies, and damaging those alliance relationships.
That is something Soviet Russia, and now Putin’s Russia, has tried to do without success for 70+ years: weaken the Western Alliances. Think “aid and comfort to the enemy”, as one of two Constitutional definitions of treason has it.
Third, there is constant lying by officials and staff, although we don't call them "ministers of propaganda". No effective difference there at all to Nazi Germany. You can believe essentially nothing the government says. That is EXACTLY what happened after 1933 in Germany.
If we continue down this path, America will end up doing very great evils, and will eventually be destroyed for it, as was Nazi Germany. It's the same path, leading to the same ugly place. Only the details are different. And not by so very much.
My fellow citizens, wake up! See this evil for what it really is! Rise up and make things different! The Declaration of Independence says explicitly that we really can do this. The Second Amendment to the Constitution gives you the means to make your uprising credible, if all else fails.
But start at the ballot box this November! Vote for ANY alternative to this evil! You could hardly do worse, if you did only that. Changing the government at the ballot box is much preferred over armed revolution, if only because there is less mess to clean up afterwards.
Your personal party preferences and personal ideologies have little to do with this. Stopping the evil of nazification is far more important than any other consideration. Simple as that.
You all have been warned!!!! On your heads be it, if you do nothing!