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The problem is middle class avarice and a desire to 'live large'.

I keep hearing this piffle about, “Illegal immigrants do the jobs Americans won’t do” What does that mean? It means that so called ‘Americans’ won’t work for long hours at less than sharecropper’s wages at dirty and dangerous jobs. So instead we farm it out to the brown and black people who have become almost invisible to us. Whenever I hear that phrase, I wonder if the speaker really understands he exact words hey are saying or are they parroting something they’ve been told (Like “the evil empire” or “the vast right wing conspiracy”. Not saying they do or don’t exist, just that these phrases have lost their meaning and have taken on a subtext of their own.)

So what would happen if tomorrow our entire border became like steel?

Many things that the McMansion crowd take for granted wouldn’t be so easy to come by so cheaply: nice lawns, clean houses, weekly manicures, and houses built on the cheap. God forbid one has to pay 50 cents or a dollar more for a head of lettuce. God forbid landscapers aren’t able to pull up in a parking lot and get a 5 man crew to tidy up your lawn. Sorry, you’ll have to pay more, maybe a lot more.

Or just maybe if there was no else to take the jobs Americans *would* do them? If anyone out there reading this can point to a (relatively) unbiased study *proving* that Americans (or immigrants who are here legally) would not do the fruit picking and house cleaning, etc and the reasons why they wouldn't, please tell me where to find it.

We do our best to keep these folks away from us. I live in a nice commuter town and I see the maids and nannies and manual laborer’s file in early in the morning and then leave at night. “God forbid they *live* in our town”

Behind the cut is an enlightening article about the invisible men who stand on the street looking for work. It’s from an op-ed piece published in the New York Times on February 12, 2006.

Wanted: Day Laborers by CAROLA OTERO BRACCO )

This is not new phenomenon. My grandfather stood on street corners with other young black men in towns like Red Bank and Freehold and Colt’s Neck during the Great Depression. Waiting for someone to give them a bit of work picking fruit or corn so they could buy some food or pay for a room.

I’m not sure if I agree with the solution proposed in the op-ed piece 100%. I think people who are here illegally need to be protected from exploitation, however I also think that if you aren’t supposed to be here, you should go home. Period. If I shoplift something, I’m not allowed to take it home and use it for a few weeks and then bring it back. I don't think they should be allowed to hang around. It feels like they are being rewarded for beating the system. (I'm not saying it doens't happen, I'm just saying it doens't feel right to me)

If we’re going to have a dialog about illegal immigration and really look for solutions, then we need to have an frank conversation with the middle class who vote and pay taxes and go up to the necks in debt for the house with the big shiny, chandelier and an SUV because they are the ones who would feel the pinch. The truly wealthy can always afford to get the help they want. The faux wealthy reap the benefits of people who will work for cheaply and for cash.

What will we tell them they have to give up in order to reduce our dependence on illegal immigrant labor?

March 2017

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