Saturday, December 23, 2006

Walls, Amnesty, and False Choices

Walls, Amnesty, and False Choices by Sameer Dossani November 29, 2006
Foreign Policy In Focus

The national immigration debate largely is split between two camps. The first "anti-immigrant" camp notes that the number of undocumented workers has shot up in recent years, perhaps to as many as 10 million, and claims that these people are taking jobs and using services that should belong to "Americans." The other, "pro-immigrant" camp notes that these "illegals" wouldn't be here unless they were being hired for jobs that no one else is willing to do, and claims that therefore they should be allowed to stay and some form of legalization, possibly amnesty, should be accorded to them.

Both of these positions address an extremely narrow question (namely, what do we do with "these people"?) and both fail to ask the primary underlying questions: why are these people coming here in the first place? Will there be more of them? Why do they continue to come?

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