There are many Americans who believe that immigration is not a good thing for the United States. While this may be an unfortunate position (it can often fall into various traps of unnecessary isolationism, racism and historical misperception) it still exists.
People who believe that immigration is bad for the country cite many reasons. Many of those reasons are poorly supported.
Some claim that the economy will be poorly impacted by immigration, but in the past, periods of great immigration have caused enormous amounts of economic growth.
Others claim that illegal immigrants are by nature criminals (linking the term illegal immigrant to them), but the vast majority of undocumented immigrants in the United States are focused on family and interested in working only legitimate jobs.
Opponents of liberalizing the immigration system in the United States often come up with outlandish ways to reduce illegal immigration (which they view as a crime on the same scale as drug trafficking or theft, instead of an immigration status). Examples include:
- The erection of a wall separating the United States from Mexico.
- Increased personnel in investigative enforcement, customs and state prosecutions of illegal immigrants.
- And hyperactive deportation proceedings assisted by the previous suggestion.
The problem with this is that it would not only be prohibitively expensive but it would also be an incredible burden on the federal government, which is solely responsible for the enforcement of immigration matters. Imagine, if you will, finding 11 million people in a country of nearly 400 million, arresting them all and sending them through the court system in the matter of a few years. That would be impossible.
Additionally, why would a country want to divert energies from prosecuting violent criminals to convicting people whose only crime is that their immigration paperwork is out of date or non existent?