On behalf of Southworth and Stamman, LLC on Tuesday, February 5, 2013.
An estimated 11 million people are living in the United States without legal status. Unfortunately, the topic often becomes engulfed in the constant political battle between Republicans and Democrats. Making this a political fight is absolutely unnecessary and nobody wins in this stalemate. So what should we be looking for here? What is the problem and how do we get bipartisan support to fix it? Here are a few p0ints of discussion that I think most reasonable Americans can and should agree on.
1. Allowing 11 million people to remain undocumented is NOT the solution.
We are only hurting our society by not offering up reasonable solutions to this problem. Without an opportunity for attaining some sort of legal status, more and more immigrants will drive without a driver's license, work "under the table" (wouldn't you if it was the only job you could get?), etc. To put it simply, this is not healthy for anyone!
Yes, many immigrants broke the law by coming across the border. Others overstayed their visa. On the other hand, many came across when they were children through no fault of there own. Should children be punished for an act of their parents? We don't accept that in our society. Instead of throwing out the unthoughtful and typical responses, "who cares, just deport them," or the polar opposite view, "free citizenship for anyone," lets find creative and better solutions.
2. Immigrants who improve our society should be permitted to become legal members of our society
Attaining a college education and joining the military to serve our country are just a few examples of our immigrants can improve our society and become a part of it. Our government can't simply hold a stick to punish those who came across the border. We must come up with creative solutions to allow people who broke immigration laws to have a chance at making it right, to become productive to our society instead of a detriment. If someone serves our country, he has a right to be a part of it. If another takes the path of education, we should welcome that person to be a part of our society.
Instead of forcing immigrants into hiding, we should encourage them towards self-improvement. We should welcome those people, not discourage them.
3. The border must be secure
Our government will never completely prevent people from coming across the border. But that does not mean the government should ignore the issue either. Failing to secure our borders leads to a continuing problem and it makes our country less safe. Documentation of each person in the United States is critical to our security and this should not be ignored. Every country protects its borders and any well-rounded immigration policy should encourage people to follow the steps towards legal immigration as much as possible.
The topic is going to continue to get heated. People, often because of their political party, will choose to ignore reasonable resolutions for political reasons. We shouldn't get caught up in political victories, but look towards a well-rounded and positive solution to improve our society. The immigrants already in the United States can be productive members of our society and we should encourage it. Along with securing our border, we must continue to look for positive solutions to fixing real problems.