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Front Page » August 1, 2006 » Opinion » The Wasatch Behind: Who are the illegals?
Published 2,974 days ago

The Wasatch Behind: Who are the illegals?


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By TOM MCCOURT
Sun Advocate reporter

Editor:

For many decades there has been much talk and only token action taken to confront the problem of illegal aliens in the country. Whatever solutions have been attempted in the past, whether amnesty, deportation, or otherwise, have not worked as the problem is bigger now than ever before. Changing the name of the offenders to undocumented workers has not solved anything either.

Just who are these estimated 12 million people that we now find to be the center of multiple debates and the focus of much of the news from sea to shining sea?

Most of us probably have the image in our mind of hordes of people making their way in the dark of the night across the river and through a gap in the fence as they flee from Mexico. In actuality, the majority of the 12 million came from many different countries over the past many years with legal paperwork and proper visas for work and other activities in the United States. For many of those folks, the period of time for them to remain in the country legally ended long before their application paperwork for extension of time was ever acted upon, and they simply disappeared from public view.

To get an idea of the size of that group, the 12 million illegals, lets image the Rose Bowl on New Years Day. A near capacity crowd is about 90,000 fans. To make room for all of those 12 million people we would require about 130,000 stadiums of that size. How many of Mayor Ray Nagans school buses would it take to transport that many people to the border? About 900 buses would be required to move that many people from each of the 130 thousand locations. The total comes to over a million buses, and of course, that many drivers, and a tank of fuel for each one.

When the crowd is safely moved to the border and pointed toward their various homes it will quickly become evident that the taxis, trains, buses and airplanes will not move them for free. A project to send all of the illegals home would very quickly eat up a budget of tens of billions of dollars.

In reality, we would not have the problem of transporting that many people because they are not going to volunteer to get on the bus. We have called this group the undocumented workers. If you stop one of these 12 million souls and ask for their credentials, they will hand you more documents than you have credit cards in your wallet. There is nothing undocumented about them, except most of the documents are fraudulent, but then, who can tell?

One unexpected effect of the increased border security during the past several years has been to make the average stay of the illegal immigrant longer than in previous years when it was easier to come and go. With these people staying in the U.S. longer they are also having more children. These children, over three million in number, are new U.S. citizens and part of the families of approximately 9.3 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States with their families.

If we are to solve this problem of illegal immigrants we must begin somewhere, and trying to export that mass of people does not look like a practical beginning. We rather need to direct our attention to our very long and wide open borders. Once the flow of about a half million per year is staunched, then we can work on getting people properly documented and into the process of becoming legal workers and/or prospective citizens.


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August 1, 2006
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