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Section A: General News


Editorial: Benefits of illegal immigration in the United States




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Tracy Joseph Bogert
Guest Column
April 18, 2012 | 2,528 views | 11 comments

People have argued for decades over the supposed costs of illegal immigration to the taxpayers of the United States.

There may be many hidden costs, but also many hidden benefits that illegal immigrants bring to this country.

We Americans love our vegetables, and pay a comparatively cheap price to put a pot of green beans on the table. Imagine that 80-cent can of green beans suddenly costing double or triple that amount because all the illegals in this country suddenly were sent back to Mexico.

Americans always love to talk a big game about “buying American” -- until it comes time to pay the piper. Americans are tight-fisted. They are so tight with their money, they squeak like the Tin Man. We will almost always buy the cheaper product made by child labor in another country or produced cheaply in Mexico.

Imagine the moaning and groaning when a can of corn costs $1.50 because we kicked out immigrants who were willing to do work Americans will not do for the same wages. Americans will not work picking vegetables for $8.50 per hour. It is hard work and involves very long hours of stooping.

Americans love owning their own homes and love paying as little as possible for them. Illegal immigrants, indeed, do a lot of the construction work, can do it cheaper and often better than U.S. citizens. Of course, having immigrants doing this labor might take some jobs from Americans, but it also makes the house less expensive.

Are Americans really willing to pay three times the cost for a can of corn or add $20,000 to $30,000 to the cost of a $200,000 home?

Illegal immigrants pay billions into Social Security. They also pay billions in sales tax and other taxes.

In return, they are not allowed to receive Social Security benefits. For sure, medical care for immigrants is a burden to some communities. However, I would argue that the cost of kicking them out and sending them back to their country of origin would cost more.

In my opinion, one of the most important contributions immigrants make to our country is their culture.

Latin culture and the culture of the Orient are beautiful and make our country even more desirable as a destination for people from around the world.

I could not imagine the city of San Antonio and South Texas without the contributions of immigrants. For sure, this city would be a boring place and I would argue a less desirable place to visit without the contributions of immigrants, both legal and illegal, from around the world. The benefits far outweigh the costs.

Tracy Joseph Bogert, an eighth-generation Texan, resides in Somerset and is active in the Democratic Party.
 

Your Opinions and Comments

 
Rock'n chair Rambler  
Over Taxed, TX  
April 21, 2012 8:42am
 
The Democrats will never vote for any real, meaningful solutions to the "illegal" immigrant problem. They need the issue to wave like a red cape in front of their latino/hispanic constituents to demonize Republicans. ... More ›

 
Connect the Dots  
Floresville  
April 20, 2012 1:01pm
 
I love your contention that only select illegals are criminals. So I guess crossing illegally must not be a criminal, huh? I got it. So at what point do we " weed out" the people intending to cause harm vs. those ... More ›

 
Bob Pritts  
St Hedwig, TX  
April 20, 2012 11:06am
 
Connect the Dots, Thanks for bringing up the subject in the first paragraph of your response. But, you are confusing the subject of the editorial. The folks taking over the border properties and killing Americans on the ... More ›

 
Connect the Dots  
Floresville  
April 20, 2012 9:55am
 
So beneficial, these illegal immigrants. Like the benefits of the group tearing up the streets of Floresville last week putting lives in danger. Or the ones that took over ( by force) ranches down in Webb County. Or maybe the ... More ›

 
Bob Pritts  
St Hedwig, TX  
April 20, 2012 8:48am
 
Humby, Do you realize what you said in the last sentence in your first response? "I will gladly let the government cut off all their benefits and use the extra tax dollars to subsidize my 'green beans'". Do ... More ›

 
Rock'n chair Rambler  
Over Taxed, TX  
April 19, 2012 6:05pm
 
"Illegal immigrants pay billions into Social Security. They also pay billions in sales tax and other taxes." Total BS. There is absolutely no way to know this. It is at best a guess based on an estimate. The fact ... More ›

 
The Marcelina Muse  
Dry Tank, TX  
April 19, 2012 12:53pm
 
Yeh, what we need is open borders, no voter ID, and more social programs. More verbal vomit from the flowerchild. What is really scary is the fact that this guy votes. If he is typical of his family I am wondering how they survived ... More ›

 
One Voice  
Floresville  
April 18, 2012 5:19pm
 
More cheap political fodder. Fanning the racial tensions. It is not the workers - it is the criminals that are not wanted. That is where the high cost is - criminals are expensive - not honest workers. How stupid do you ... More ›

 
humby  
stockdale  
April 18, 2012 2:17pm
 
the government non partison cbo analysis showed that illegal immigrants cost the american taxpaper at minimum 150 billion dollars each year (and that cost does not include any amount for ID theft that comes hand in hand with ... More ›

 
PRAIRIE GROUCH  
GRAND PRAIRIE TX  
April 18, 2012 11:22am
 
The only reason that Americans won't do field work is the so called safety net. After WW II, my brother and wife followed the harvest to eek out a living. They had no choice if they wanted to continue to eat. Of course. that ... More ›

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