Does American Society Require Stricter Immigration Policies?
The issue of immigration has always played one of the most important roles in development of human society. It had a major effect on formation of modern races and nationalities. When people migrated from one region to another they contributed to cross-cultural communication and formation of new nationalities. Recent technological advance of humanity allowed people to travel more freely and easily than ever. Nowadays, a person can cross the world in a plane in a matter of hours. Such technological advance has given people all over the world such new abilities like deciding where to work and live. Such changes in transportation had both positive and negative consequences for regional and world economy. The issue of immigration is especially topical for the United States of America that is a country formed by immigrants. Nowadays the US is a place of great opportunity where people from all over the world wish to live and work. A large number of immigrants bring both positive and negative economic and social consequences. Therefore, there is a question whether American society requires stricter immigration policies and what should be done about this whole situation.
From ancient times immigration has been one of the most important elements prior to formation and development of human society. It is common knowledge that modern nationalities were created through mixing of different ethos with the help of migration and sexual contacts. This rings especially true for the USA that was created as a country of immigrants. At first the territory of the US was inhabited by Indians who can be undoubtedly called Native Americans. However, the discovery of America by Columbus has led to a full scale war between Indians and European invaders that came in search of gold and new territory to explore and colonize. This war ended in defeat of Native Americans and massive colonization of American continent by Europeans and African slaves. Eventually the whole situation resulted in American Civil War and formation of the United States of America. With time slavery got abandoned and African-Americans got equal right with white population. Due to growing economic and political strength the USA became a place of opportunity where people from all over the world came in search for a better life (Lamm & Everett 654). All of these events have contributed to formation of unique American nationality that can be described as a mix of cultural and ethnic groups from all over the world. Even the Statue of Liberty has an inscription stating that the USA would accept any person willing to live and honestly work on its territory (Lamm & Everett 654). Despite this fact, reality seems to be quite different nowadays.
Development of technological progress in recent decades has led to new means of transportation that allow fast and easy travelling all around the world. They include fast trains, cars and modern planes that enable person crossing the world in a matter of hours. Because of such means an ever growing number of immigrants can travel to the United States. This situation results in a very large number of both legal and illegal immigrants in the US who live and work there. Legal immigrants live and work according to US laws and legislation, while illegal ones do not fit into such spheres of social life like education or healthcare (Camarota, “The Fiscal and Economic Impact of Immigration on the United States”). Due to these facts immigrants create both positive and negative consequences for American society and economy.
According to recent research immigrants cause positive and negative consequences for American society (Messerli, “Should America Maintain/Increase the Level of Legal Immigration?”). It would be helpful to start with the positive ones in order to understand why so many people wish to come to the USA. The most intelligent people who are looking for new opportunities and financial benefits choose to come to the US (Lamm & Everett 667). Immigrants enrich the culture of the country they also take jobs with low salary and expand the labor market, creating more possibilities for different businesses (Messerli, “Should America Maintain/Increase the Level of Legal Immigration?”). Immigrants also contribute to the positive international political image of the US, showing that it is a truly open and welcoming multicultural country. This image also gives hope and chance for a better life to struggling people all over the world (Messerli, “Should America Maintain/Increase the Level of Legal Immigration?”). Nevertheless, there are also negative consequences that provoke social tension and intolerance towards immigrants. Large numbers of immigrants give terrorists and criminals more opportunities to come into the country (Messerli, “Should America Maintain/Increase the Level of Legal Immigration?”). These people sell drugs, weapons and commit other serious crimes that lead to overall increase of crime level in the country. Immigrants from poor social groups also consume a huge amount of government resources without paying taxes. They also create high competition in labor market that causes low skilled American citizens to earn less (Messerli, “Should America Maintain/Increase the Level of Legal Immigration?”).
The issue of high competition in labor market creates major social tension and distress in American society. Recent survey shows that two thirds of Americans want stricter enforcement of immigration laws (Dean, “Two-Thirds of Americans Want Stricter Enforcement of Immigration Laws, Quinnipiac Poll Finds”). Such desires come from the fact that immigrants take the same jobs as Native Americans for less money. This creates very high competition that is especially hard to cope with for Americans that do not have quality education. Research shows that during last 13 years the overall number of workers increased but over 1.3 million Native American citizens lost their jobs (Camarota, “The Fiscal and Economic Impact of Immigration on the United States”). This means that the increase in number of people working in the USA went to immigrants. Such situation makes native people frustrated and angry, resulting in aggression and intolerance towards immigrants. Nevertheless, high competition is actually good for the US economy as it allows businesses to become more flexible, decreases production costs and stimulates people to get quality education (Davidson, “Do Illegal Immigrants Actually Hurt the U.S. Economy?”). According to latest research the long-term effects on American economy produced by immigrants shall be strictly positive (Peri, “The Effects of Immigrants on U.S. Employment and Productivity”). Therefore, it is financially beneficial for the US to welcome immigrants into its society.
It is evident that positive results that immigrants produce for American economy and social sphere overweight the negative ones. Therefore, there seems to be no need to implement stricter immigration policies. On the contrary, it would be highly beneficial for the US economy to simplify its immigration policies (Peri, “The Effects of Immigrants on U.S. Employment and Productivity”). This would result in faster and more efficient integration of immigrants into American society. Legal immigrants would pay taxes and contribute to development of social protection system. But there is a need to develop moral values and awareness of American society in order to eradicate intolerance and aggression towards immigrants. Social awareness would also result in such positive social consequences for the whole society like increasing level of education among younger people due to high competition in the labor market (Peri, “The Effects of Immigrants on U.S. Employment and Productivity”).
In conclusion, it can be stated that positive impact of immigrants on American economy is bigger than the negative one. This seems fitting for the country created by immigrants. Therefore, there is no real need to make them stricter. On the contrary, immigration policies should be made easier in order to receive maximum benefits from immigrants that come into country. The US government should also implement special social incentives in order to overcome intolerance towards immigrants and struggle against illegal immigration more actively. In my opinion, this is the best way to solve the issue of immigration in the United States of America. It is also important to remember that all people are born equal and it is essential to treat people according to their actions. Such attitude will ensure further development of all human society.