Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Them "Wetbacks" Are a Money Drain

According to many folks, "wetbacks" -- a derogatory term for illegal immigrants, particularly those who hail from Mexico -- are a money drain on the local, state and national economy. Supposedly they pay little or no taxes, yet utilize all sorts of government-based assistance programs. We spend money on educating their children and we subsidize their health care. Even worse, it is said they steal jobs from hardworking, red-blooded Americans.

If you listen long enough to the haters of "wetbacks," you would come to think that their presence represents a big drag on this country's economic lifeblood.

Of course, this picture is wholly unrealistic. Farmworkers -- legal or illegal -- are the main reason food prices in this country are still within reach of most families. If these farmworkers were removed from the picture, consumer prices would be significantly higher than they are now. With so many Americans unemployed, a lot of people would not be able to afford basic food stuffs and the poverty rate would show a steady increase.

We may soon get to see if my assessment is correct. The states of Alabama, Arizona and Georgia have passed stringent legislation aimed at illegal immigrants and, two of those states, have a lot of farms and cropland.

A recent report from Georgia indicates that over 11,000 agricultural jobs are going unfilled and attempts to get unemployed probationers to fill these positions is not going well. It seems that American citizens don't like the backbreaking work in stifling heat for meager pay!

I find it truly ironic that those who support these draconian illegal immigrant legislative efforts will soon see an actual money drain -- just not the kind they expect! With illegal immigrants staying away from their states, crops will rot in the field and agricultural revenue will drop. Less crops picked means more farms going under and higher prices for consumers.

All in all, these legislative efforts at least are consistent; they represent a lose-lose-lose proposition for all concerned.

Bravo, bigots. Bravo.

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