Flyover: How do immigrants fit into the 'American Dream?' | Minnesota Public Radio News

Flyover: How do immigrants fit into the 'American Dream?'

In the wake of Tuesday’s deadly attack in New York City, President Trump criticized the diversity visa lottery program that allowed the suspect to live in the U.S. as a green card holder.Trump’s stance on immigration is one of the messages that appealed to many voters in last year’s presidential election.But one year out from the election there’s a lot we still don’t know about his platform: Will there be a wall along our border with Mexico? Are Trump’s immigrations bans legal? This week on Flyover, we’re asking if America’s immigration system is one of our greatest strengths weaknesses.Give us your thoughts by commenting here

    Immigrants contribute far more to the economy than they take out. They create many more jobs than they take. The attacks on them are pure demagoguery.

    That said, the real issue is that many people are uncomfortable with being exposed to unfamiliar cultures. The opposition to immigration has more to do with that discomfort than the economic arguments you hear so much of in the media. I am not sure what to do about that except tell people to get over it. We are and always have been a multi-cultural nation. And, at least since Ben Franklin complained about the all the Germans in Pennsylvania, there have been people who are uncomfortable with that.
    Illegal immigration is encouraged economically. Particularly in agribusiness, manual labor is highly seasonal/temporary and low-paying. As a result, few US citizens can piece together a dependable wage from seasonal farm labor. But migrant workers from Mexico can, by going back to Mexico during the off season. If agribusiness were prevented from hiring undocumented workers, it would either have to hire US citizens at higher wages, making food (primarily fruits and vegetables) much more expensive, or it would have to automate its operations. As long as the economic incentive is there, there will be a flux of immigrants. Why not give them an easier path to worker visas, i.e., make them documented?
    My grandmother, born in 1899, taught country school in rural Minnesota and pushed English as the first language with her students and their families, not always successfully. Many of the 1st generation lived (and today's immigrants live) with a hope they will go 'home.' Their children are American - and are 'home.' It takes more than 1 generation to assimilate.
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