Holy shit, people. I can't take all this Facebook noise in the latest immigration kerfuffle. Time to scream a little dose of reality into the void: I'm going to tell you a hard truth that you'll most likely disagree with if you have ANY opinion on immigration, either way.
Here it is: The current system might just be as good as it's going to get.
Obviously, the real solution to immigration is politically in the middle. Building a wall is a dumbass idea. Letting everyone in is a dumbass idea. There needs to be a policy that discourages illegal immigration, encourages a path to citizenship, makes people play by the rules. Also, just as important, we just want the good people. No one ever says it, probably because it doesn't need to be said.
The thing is, we already have this system. It's just no politician is really willing to talk about it.
The best defense against illegal immigration was invented long ago. It's not a wall or an ochre orangutang. It's the innocuous social security number. Without it, you can't really get a decent, high-paying job. You can't collect social security. You can't get a credit card or borrow money or a hundred other things that we all take for granted. Every time an illegal goes in for the so-called "services", you are put at risk for being deported. Bad things can happen to you in the private sector too. It's easy to screw over the pack of guys hanging out outside Home Depot every morning, because what are they gonna do, go to the police?
Illegal immigrants are politically, legally and financially weak. And we as a people seem fine with that. This isn't a judgment on the American people, it's just a reality. The shadow economy that exists benefits us. Tomatoes are cheaper. Restaurants can keep their prices down. These are things we like, Republican and Democrat alike. And people respond to incentives.
America says one thing officially, but it mumbles something else under its breath to every person queuing up on the south side of the Rio Grande: "Sure, illegal alien, you can come here. We can't bless it officially, of course; occasionally we'll round a few of you up in a token effort, but it's all good. Stay as long as you like. There's a catch, though: you'll be second class citizens every second you're here. Still want the deal? Welcome aboard!"
But there's a carrot too. Eventually the children of illegal immigrants will get into the system, and life will get better... eventually. It's a deal - take it or leave it. Yeah, we don't look great when we do it, but it keeps out most of the slackers and brings in the people who are able to economically and rapidly fix my ancient Corolla for cash.
Is the system we have immoral? Exploitive? The noblest form of meritocracy? I dunno. But let's call it like it is and keep the political histrionics to a minimum.
Noah's Inner Monologue
Scribblings of a man who can barely operate an idiotproof website.