Rhetoric & Research
The Invasion of Illegal Immigrants
The United States has been invaded—not by a conquering army or some world superpower. These invaders take on a different form. They have no leader, no weapons of mass destruction, and no militaristic plan of attack. Yet these invaders pose one of the greatest threats to America’s future. Who are these dreaded invaders who pose such a threat? They are illegal immigrants.
In the past few years, illegal immigrants have become a major topic in the political realm. Peter Katel, the author of “Illegal Immigration” and many other well known political articles, is a highly respected author and correspondent in Newsweek’s Miami Journal. According to Peter Katel, it is estimated that more than ten million illegal immigrants are now living in the United States. This number has increased from only 3.5 million fifteen years ago (Katel 3). Illegal immigrants threaten to destroy America’s economy, national and domestic security, and culture. Why are illegal aliens a security issue?
One of the biggest fears concerning the illegal immigration problem is the security issue that arises. In 1993 the World Trade Center was bombed by two Middle Eastern men, Mohamed and Mahmud Abouhalima, who had gained permanent residence in the country illegally. These two men used flaws and loopholes in the Immigration and Naturalization Service’s regulations in order to unlawfully obtain green cards (Katel 9). This is just one example of how illegal immigrants have compromised national security.
Regarding domestic security, illegal immigrants have had a tremendous effect on the safety of individuals, mainly in the large cities. According to the City Journal, which is a nationally respected political magazine whose readership spans across the United States, “Some of the most violent criminals at large today are illegal aliens,” and they account for “ninety-five percent of all outstanding warrants for homicide (which total 1,200 to 1,500)” and “up to two-thirds of all fugitive warrants (17,000).” In addition, illegal immigrants play a large role in gangs, mafia, and other organized crime rings which often are deeply involved in dealing drugs. These groups participate in a number of other illegal activities such as robbery, assault, and racketeering as well as more serious crimes such as murder and rape. However, because of laws and restrictions, police are often unable to use immigrants’ illegal status to apprehend these known criminals before they commit more crimes (MacDonald 1). In 2000 approximately thirty percent of all criminals in prison were born in another country. Many of these felons are arrested and then re-arrested for committing new crimes after being released from prison the first time (MacDonald 4).
How does illegal immigration affect our economy?
Illegal immigrants also have a detrimental effect on the United States economy. One of the largest complaints among American workers is the fact that illegal aliens are taking American jobs, and because illegals are willing to be paid less, wages are being depressed. Employers greatly benefit from the illegal workforce because they are able to obtain cheaper labor and are able to exercise greater control over the workers because of their illegal status. Many argue that illegal immigrant workers are good for the economy because they fill the jobs when no one else is available to fill them. This is only partially true. There are native born workers and even legal immigrants who are available to fill the jobs, but they are reluctant to fill those positions because of low wages and poor working conditions (Katel 2, 7).
There are several people who believe that immigrants are beneficial to the economy in America. Pro-immigration people argue that if there is a ten percent raise in immigrant population that it would lower the native wages up to one percent, which is...