The immigration debate isn’t just about values—it’s about economics, too. And our recession intensifies the economic issues. When so many Americans are losing their jobs, would legalizing illegal immigrants only make things worse by creating more demand for a dwindling number of jobs?
No, say two of the nation’s largest unions. The Laborers’ International Union of North America and the Service Employees International Union now support the legalization of illegal immigrants. These unions have a combined membership of over 2.5 million members.
Why? Why would these unions throw their support behind the legalization effort? Critics say it’s self-serving, a way to inflate membership and make the unions more powerful.
To say illegal immigrants are mistreated is an understatement; there are plenty of horror stories out there–some OurValues readers know this personally.
“The unions, at least, understand that there is a better way,” according to a new editorial in the New York Times. “They see immigration reform as an issue of worker empowerment. If undocumented immigrants undercut wages and job conditions for Americans—and many do, by tolerating low pay and abuse and bolstering an off-the-books system that robs law-abiding employers and taxpayers—it is because they cannot stand up for their rights.” (Read the entire editorial here–and don’t miss the comments on it.)
What do you think?
Do you favor or oppose legalizing illegal immigrants?
Are your reasons related to economics or values or both?
Tell us about your personal experiences and observations: What do you see from your vantage point?
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