You wake up one morning to the sound of fists. Lots of them pounding on your door. You shake the sleep from your mind as you stumble to the door to determine what is so urgent. As you begin to crack the door open, you see people. Hundreds of people, standing on your porch and front steps, with sleeping bags, clothes, water bottles, whatever they are able to carry. You hear them say they want to come in. They say they want the same economic advantage that you have.
You can’t really believe what you’re hearing. For a split second you think you must just be dreaming and it’s a nightmare… you’re still asleep. But then your heart skips as you realize, you aren’t asleep. These people are really at your door and demanding entry and equal access your home.
As far-fetched as that sounds that is what 7,000 people now standing at our Southern doorstep are demanding. They are currently in Mexico, but they have traversed thousands of miles with one thought in mind: they will come to our door, and whether or not we open the door, they plan to get in by any means necessary. While some may be legitimate asylum seekers, most are economic migrants. While one’s economic condition through migration is an understandable aspiration, the United States cannot accommodate everyone whose lives would be improved by settling in our country.
How did we get here? How did we get to the point that people from around the world, think they have a right to demand and simply take, what we have worked so hard for and sacrificed so much to build? The answer is short; we’ve allowed it, even encouraged it, and we don’t enforced our current immigration laws to prove differently.
Forty years ago, employers found they could hire illegal aliens, pay them off the books to do work they use to pay American workers to do. They found they didn’t have to pay 7.5 percent of their wages to Social Security, unemployment insurance, workers compensation, etc. like they did their American counterparts. You’ve heard these are “jobs that Americans wouldn’t do”, but that simply isn’t true. American always did “those” jobs; housekeeping, mowing lawns, meat packing, construction, dry wall. You name it, and we did it! But greed got in the way. Now both employers and illegal workers continue to be greedy.
What used to be single men from Mexico coming to work for a while then leaving with their money and returning home, transitioned to entire families coming illegally. That change began right after the 1986 amnesty. Illegal workers were emboldened. They found jobs easily, places to live, and produced automatic American citizen children all the while hoping for another amnesty. Maybe the U.S. would reward them all for breaking the law, once again. Congress has certainly attempted numerous times to do just that, because they would prefer the easy way out. Wave a wand and make them legal, problem solved! Few want to do the real work necessary to fix this problem once and for all.
Congress has failed our nation for more than 30 years. They have refused to secure the border, fine employers for hiring illegal aliens, fund the wall, and take seriously human and drug trafficking. In neglecting these responsibilities, Congress has also exposed the American people to risks posed by criminal illegal aliens, including gang members, and terrorists. You can’t look the other way on illegal immigration, without knowing you are looking the other way on human traffickers, drug traffickers, alien criminals, gangs and terrorists as well.
President Trump was elected because he offered firm policies to protect the interests and security of the American people. We need more people in Congress who are willing to enforce our laws. It is 7,000 waiting to come in today, but it could well be 70,000 next week, or 700,000 more in the months to come. Until Congress is prepared to act, the nightmare will continue.
Susan Tully writes for the Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform.