I am currently enrolled with the online division of University of Phoenix. I am working on an Associate’s degree in Elementary Education (this may change soon). Anyway, in my English class we have been given an assignment to write a 2000 to 2500 word essay on the subject of our choice. It has to be a persuasive essay, in other words, I have to try to get my readers to understand and, to some extent, get them to agree with me. I chose to do my essay on the benefits of immigration. While doing research for the paper I came across an article in a publication called The American Spectator and the title of this article was Immigration, si; welfare, no. The author is Tom Bethell, who is a correspondent for The American Spectator. This was an extremely well written article and Mr. Bethell made some very compelling arguments for immigration. I would like to get your opinion on a couple of things he wrote in his article. I wish I could post the entire article here but so far haven’t been able to find it on the web. HERE GOES….
“In the early twentieth century, when proportionately far more immigrants arrived than today, the discipline of the market was in place and it was effective. Today, unfortunately, this is very far from being the case. There has been a great and calamitous change. What has changed is not that the new immigrants are Mexican and Vietnamese rather than Italian and Irish, and therefore culturally and racially different. It is that the free-market system has been eroded by the ever-encroaching welfare state. What is so disastrous today is that very recent immigrants, even those who are here illegally, more and more have access to that welfare state.”
I would assume that when Mr. Bethell is speaking of “the discipline of the market”, he is saying that in the early twentieth century, people didn’t have welfare to rely on to get their bills paid and/or to survive, therefore they HAD to work to take care of their family.
He goes on to say,”My own position, which I should have thought was widely shared but apparently is not, is that I like immigrants, wherever they come from, and in whatever numbers, as long as they come here to work; but I don’t like the welfare state and I would like to see it abolished for everyone, including all immigrants, legal or illegal.”
I like the way he thinks. We have to remember that when we drag government assistance into the immigration argument, that there are white and black people who also take advantage of abuse these same services. I know people personally who have said they don’t have to get a job because welfare pays their bills. In my opinion, that is absolutely the most ridiculous thing a person can say. If you are just too lazy to go to work, why should the government, (taxpayers), support you? There are people in our society who feel ‘entitled’ to these benefits for a myriad of reasons, but the truth of the matter is that no one individual owes another one anything. Immigrants who come here to work contribute to our economy and will take menial unglamorous jobs for low pay. These jobs are important no matter how small or menial they seem. So, what is your opinion on the passages above? Because this is a particularly touchy and emotional subject for some, I would like to remind all those of you who decide to post, that this is not an age restricted site, which means that children under 18 may see these comments.