Farmingville Essay

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The Farmingville documentary examines the clash between long time residents of a Long Island, NY suburban community and Mexican day laborers who move into their neighborhood. The illegal immigrant population has grown to ten percent of the town’s population because of the area’s successful restaurant, landscaping, and construction industries. Many in Farmington are not happy with the arrival of the immigrants in their community, and yet they accept that the day laborers perform the jobs that the residents do not want to do themselves. The immigration problems Farmingville faces are being experienced throughout the country, so it is interesting to see how this town deals with its illegal immigration problems. The documentary does not offer any solution to this problem, however, but instead ends with the dilemma that America needs to decide what its identity is in relation to immigration. In other words, is America still a nation of immigrants or is it now closed to further immigration, especially from countries where the people do not look like us? After seeing this documentary, it is clear to me that our country needs to address the problem of illegal immigration from Mexico and come up with a solution that Americans and illegal immigrants can live with.

My position on illegal immigration is a complex one. I find that I confront the same dilemma the people of Farmingville face. On one hand, I believe that illegal immigration points out how insecure our nation’s borders are from outside penetration. I do not agree, however, with how some Farmington residents chose to deal with this problem. For example, one resident creates a group that blames the workers for bringing crime, noise, and overcrowding to the area in an attempt to rid the town of the illegal immigrants. She even calls on outside national immigration control groups to deal with the problem. All this hate group achieves is to increase the tension between the two groups. This tension is what...
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