U.S. Immigration Myths Essay

Submitted By cctjsf
Words: 1396
Pages: 6

David Zec III ENGL 150 Woodlief 3/1/2011

Immigration Myths ! The United States of America is a nation of immigrants. Out of the current While America

population, only 0.8% was a direct descendant of a native American.

remains a growing nation of immigrants, some xenophobic groups still exist as banes to reform. As our world becomes more interconnected, and the United States retains its frontrunner position in the economy and world affairs, immigration rates continue to rise. Most opponents of immigration make loosely based claims that immigrants hurt the nation in multiple ways; the most effective arguments attack immigrants based on evidence of negative impact on the economy in some way. However, in order to remain an innovative and productive country, we depend on immigrants to join our cause and continue attempting to make the world a better place. Immigrants often work jobs that native born Americans don’t look for, such as inexpensive and no-strings-attached labor, or in high skilled fields such as scientific research, where immigrants account for 38% of researchers with a doctorate, according to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau. Again, contrary to popular belief, they do pay taxes, as they depend on the government just as much as the next citizen. Often most are ineligible for most public assistance programs, but immigrants make up the same proportion of in-need Americans as natural-born citizens. It is unfair to blindly claim that immigrants are responsible for our domestic problems. The general consensus among anti-immigration advocates is that immigrants take our jobs, pay taxes, and receive an unfair amount in public benefits, causing the economy to slow and the nation to cry out for a scapegoat.

David Zec III ENGL 150 Woodlief 3/1/2011

!

Immigration often occurs when an individual is displaced from or advancing into

work, and it becomes impossible or simply less opportunistic to remain in their native country. In a 2012 study by The Partnership for a New American Economy, it was shown that immigrants with degrees generally expand the job opportunities for native-born citizens and help grow the economy. Specifically, the study states, “the United States was built by immigrants, and continues to be built by immigrants. Today, more than 40 percent of America’s Fortune 500 companies were founded by an immigrant or a child of an immigrant.” This means that while immigrants come here often and take a job working under someone else and simply filling in space, a higher proportion of immigrants come to America and create new opportunities and increase the scale of the economy. The report also goes on about the failures of our current policies, and is especially critical of failures in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, mathematics). In many cases, gifted foreigners in science and technology are forced out of the country when they should be kept here to fill the needs of American business. The United States needs to begin embracing immigrants, rather than turning them away, as most evidence points to immigrants only helping the economy.

!

The scariest thing about government for most people seems to be taxation,

making the false claim that “undocumented immigrants don’t pay any taxes,” an attention grabber to the average American audience. This claim is assumed in part because if you are an illegal immigrant, logic dictates that you should “fly under the radar” of immigration enforcement and rely on cash payments that can not be traced. It is estimated by The Immigrant Learning Center, a Massachusetts based immigration aid

David Zec III ENGL 150 Woodlief 3/1/2011

center, that at least 70 percent of undocumented immigrants report their work through ‘creatively’ acquired IRS numbers or fake documents. The ‘creative’ methods include forgery and fraud, but are performed out of the necessity to appear legitimate in the U.S. The chief actuary of Social Security, Stephen Goss, states, “our…