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Saturday, July 05, 2014

Humanitarian crises on America's southern border

Ever wonder why Americans threw so much money on Haiti post disasters like hurricanes and earthquakes? Money was used as a way to prevent waves of families from floating up on American shores to escape the havoc in Haiti. Unfortunately, the money showered on Haiti hasn't seemed to improve the human condition in the poor country, but funds probably prevented people from floating their way to the southern shores of the  U.S.  

Now, Americans are seeing another wave of refugees hiking over difficult terrain to escape Central America and crossing our southern border, on foot. They're crossing the southern border with Texas or wherever they can enter, to be deliberately picked up and taken to detention centers. Let's face it. There's virtually no way of preventing this wave of immigration except to fix the problems the refugees are escaping.  

Nevertheless, politically right wing anti-immigration zealots who are, themselves, descendants of immigrants, are creating havoc with innocent Hispanic refugee-immigrants. They're embarrassing all Americans by outrageously blocking desperate Central American women and children from entering immigration centers in San Diego. This is the wrong action to take to bring about immigration reform. These innocent people seeking freedom from tyranny are draining their own country of people who somehow have enough money to pay "coyote" leaders to take them to the American border. In other words, the money paid to the "coyote" is no longer in the Central American economy but, rather, in the "coyote's" pocket. Moreover, the young families fleeing to the U.S. must be a labor drain on the nation they've left behind. 

In America, these refugee immigrants can work, if Republicans would allow them to receive a permit to do so. They want to work and pay taxes. Nevertheless, most of the refugees will likely find jobs for cash, where they are paid under the table and, therefore, won't pay taxes on their incomes. Republicans are blocking immigration reforms, which would help refugees to qualify to work for wages where they'd pay taxes and social security, until they would achieve residency status.

Right wing anti-immigration zealots are making America look cruel to the world by blocking women and children from entering immigration stations. These right wing anti-immigration zealots are, themselves, descendants of immigrants. Rather than waste time blocking innocent women and children, they should advise our U.S. Congress to pass meaningful immigration reform.

Once these refugee immigrants are in the U.S., they are very difficult to deport because they have no way of returning to where they came from. How does the U.S. deport tens of thousands of women and children? We can't.

Unfortunately, there's no quick answer to the current immigration dilemma. Yet, it's blatantly wrong to be angry at the innocent women and children seeking asylum in the U.S., where they want to work and live with their children, in freedom.

In my opinion, one way Americans can mitigate the growing humanitarian crises with Central American and Hispanic refugees is to let them work for taxable wages. It's not the perfect solution but immigrant labor is needed to do the jobs Americans don't want to perform. To do otherwise, not allowing them to work, is inviting a larger humanitarian crises when these waves of immigrants become dependent on "under the table" wages and find they cannot qualify for Social Security later in life.  

Meanwhile, while they're working, their wages would contribute to the Social Security trust fund. In the event the refugees will return to their native countries, the money they'd have paid into Social Security will stay in the fund. If they remain in the U.S., they will have paid into the fund to qualify for benefits later in life and not have to be forced to live on welfare.

This current immigration crises is a humanitarian disaster. But, blaming the victims, ie, the innocent women and children who suffered to reach the U.S., is definitely the wrong way to respond to the sadness of this situation.

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