Sunday, November 29, 2015

Syrian Refugees

Recently, Syria has been involved in a full scale civil war. Millions of people within the country do not wish to participate in the war and are currently seeking refuge in other developed countries. Many of them are attempting to reach the US, and the question that has become a divider of politicians is, should we accept them?

Coming from the Republican side of the spectrum, many candidates wish to seal off Syrian refugees from entering US territory. Their reason for this isolationism is fear. People are afraid that terrorists are disguising themselves as refugees in order to gain access into the country. Donald Trump had a very interesting idea on how to guarantee the safety of our country. He proposed that all Muslims within the US should be required to wear an item of clothing that shows that they are practicing Islam. However, this reminds me of a similar plan that was developed in Nazi Germany under Hitler's rule.  
Contrasting the Republican belief, President Obama believes that this is the worst time to close our borders. He believes that this is a time for compassion and acceptance. Many of the democratic candidates are supporting this decision. Both of the front-runners of the democratic nomination, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, are attempting to make the immigration process easier for all Syrian refugees. 

The idea that is proposed by the democratic side of the spectrum seems more reasonable than the one proposed by many of the republicans. Millions of people were forced out of their homes and are seeking asylum. To refuse entrance of these immigrants based solely on their religious affiliation is blatant discrimination.   

Friday, November 6, 2015

Sanders on Immigration

Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has his own ideas on what to do with the immigration problems the US faces. Sanders hopes to bring undocumented immigrants out of the shadows and help them gain permanent residency and eventual citizenship for all illegals. In order to do that, Sanders has expressed his support of the DREAM Act, which will address all of the problems Sanders hopes to fix.

Sanders is also an activist for an increase in wages for undocumented immigrants. According to Sanders, if there is a work shortage, employers should be paying higher wages, not lower.

Through these reformations Sanders hopes to make the US more suitable for immigrants searching for employment within the US.

Blue Cards

The main attractive quality that America has for many migrants crossing the border is the promise of a paying job. I believe that the US should offer a certain work permit that allows immigrants to legally live in the US while working a job. This is similar to the Blue Card system in the European Union. If migrants come the the US to work a job, why should we not let them. The argument that a lot of people make is that by them coming into the states, there are less jobs for Americans. However it is clear that there are many jobs that Americans simply don't want, creating a hole in the labor market. If migrants come with the hope in working a job there is a need for, why shouldn't we let them? 

By giving immigrants working permits within the country, it lets them live in the states legally while actively contributing to the US economy. This would also allow them to achieve citizenship status if they desired it. President Obama has already handed out over 5 million illegal immigrants within the country. This is a step in the right direction. It gives immigrants an opportunity to live here and work while not legally a citizen, while also giving them opportunities to become citizens.

Minimum Wage

Social mobility has been somewhat stunted within the US and it has been, more or less, the cause of unfair wages. While the minimum wage is not generally associated with immigration, I believe that if there were a minimum wage increase to a living wage, it would help lower income families and households increase their chances of getting a better education or job.

 There is the argument that many people will lose their jobs as a result of this increase, however the US Department of Labor states that a raise of the minimum wage will have little to no negative effects on the employment of minimum wage workers, even during weaknesses in the labor market. There is also the argument that small businesses would not be able to support an increase in wages. The US Department of Labor also found that 3 out of 5 small businesses support the federal increase in wages and believe that it will benefit the free market by giving people more spending money.

Of the 11 million immigrants, upwards of 50% of households live with the assistance of welfare. If the minimum wage were to be increased, it would not only benefit the lives of immigrants, it would benefit the US government. By giving immigrant workers a living wage, there will be less people using the welfare programs, therefor reducing government spending.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Donald Trump's Foolproof Plan

Presidential candidate Donald Trump has a very unorthodox idea on how to deal with immigration. He intends to build a wall along the entire southern border. Not only would this take years to build, it would cost the roughly $20 billion. Trump insists that he will have Mexico pay for the border, but is that really what we want Mexico paying for? If Mexico did have $20 billion to throw at a wall, it would better be spent creating new jobs for the people that are basically forced out of their country for money and jobs that can be found in America.

Trump doesn't stop with just a wall however, he believes that all illegal residents of the US should be deported. This brings another question of cost. The Center For American Progress believes that in order to deport all 11 million undocumented immigrants, the US would have to spend at least $285 billion. On top of that cost, by losing roughly 11 million workers, the United States' GDP would decrease by about 1.46% annually, which would total in $2.6 trillion lost in 10 years.

Donald Trump speaks loudly and carries a big stick. The only problem is his small brain. Speaking from a purely economic standpoint, it would be devastating to the American economy to put his plan into action. But, of course, we can trust him when he says:
     "I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I'll build them very inexpensively — I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words."

Undocumented Workers

Where it stands now, the United States' immigration process is a tedious one. Many immigrants that come to the US to work, are undocumented. Currently there are over 11 million illegal immigrants that are employed. If the United States were to follow Donald Trump's suggestion, we would deport 11 million workers, as well as taxpayers, within the country. The immigrants that are living in the country, would most likely want to have citizenship status. The problem is that the process to become a citizen is tedious.

There are literacy tests that immigrants need to pass before becoming citizens in the US. Immigrants that don't pass this test and are in the US temporarily,or come here secretly live here illegally. The reason some people need to be smuggled into the country have various reasons to do so. The waiting line to lawfully come to the US can last over 50 years if the immigrant does not have a college degree or does not have any relatives within the states. Because of this, immigrants are driven to smuggle themselves into the US illegally. The immigration system needs to be changed to allow people on the waiting list, quicker access to citizenship and legal immigration.