Politics, Payoffs, And Illegal Immigration Essay

5521 words - 22 pages

Politics, Payoffs, and Illegal Immigration

According to the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, from 1993 to 1995 the United States has experienced the largest two year decline in immigration since the years 1930-1932. In 1995 there were 720,461 legal immigrants admitted to our country; some people would make the argument that this is far too many immigrants ( U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service). It is impossible to clearly define the term "anti-immigration" because it is not a thing, it is a thought, a philosophy, a movement that appears in the abstract. In order to gain a better understanding of anti- immigration, I turned to the Internet. The medium of the Internet provides an accessible forum for the "world community" to express themselves outside the context of any controlling influences. However, deriving a definition of the term anti-immigration by the standards and understanding derived from the Internet becomes very confusing. There are those sites that advocate curtailing of all immigration both legal and illegal; there are those that simply address the illegal immigration issue, and then there are those that address illegal immigration while at the same time arguing that legal immigration should be cut back--not stopped altogether. Interestingly enough, sites created on the west coast lean heavier on their argument against illegal immigration; the opinions expressed in these sites have an emotional basis. Sites that come from the east coast are more factual, and tend to deal with the immigration policy in its entirety, both legal and illegal. The purpose of this paper is to examine the anti-immigration information as it is presented on the Internet from a logical perspective. Lack of assimilation, draining the welfare system, displacing American workers and overtaxing our resources are arguments presented by the anti- immigration web sites. Each of these arguments requires a closer examination.

A. Lack of assimilation into our culture by the immigrant and the resultant destruction of the cultural fabric of our society.

The basic argument is expressed by the "AICF Fact Sheet on Immigration" is that "assimilation is not working well." This statement reveals the underlying assumption of the writer that American culture is a given to which the immigrants do not add. Rather, American culture is something the immigrants enter and are absorbed in, becoming identical to it. It is something that the immigrants potentially aspire to--for what else could have possible persuaded him/her to become an immigrant in the first place?

Another site puts a different "twist" on the subject by complaining that "immigrants today are more ethnically and culturally diverse." The claim appears to be legitimate at first glance, but on closer examination the meaning fades away: It could potentially mean that immigrants today are more culturally diverse in relation to each other, that there is a greater number of nationalities in the U.S....

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