More immigration folly
Writing when Bush first proposed his Mexican initiative in 2001, sociologist Christopher Jencks said the highest price might be paid by children of the new Latino immigrants, who will very likely earn little more than their parents, perhaps become disillusioned with their new homeland, and harden into a sizable underclass. He raises the specter of a possible Latin-American-style gap in the United States between the rich and the poor.
At some point, the influx of unskilled labor has to be limited to protect fair wages and decent working conditions for all. In the elite view, it is uncompassionate and maybe racist to talk about limiting immigration. But this is a huge, continuous immigration with no end in sight. In 2001, the Mexican Ministry of the Interior reported that even with falling birthrates and increased economic development, mass immigration from Mexico to the United States will continue for at least 30 years. The ministry's estimate, nearly 400,000 immigrants per year, is likely much too low and takes no account of a guest-worker program.
Government has made a series of awful decisions on immigration and apparently is ready to do it once again, this time with short-term, election-year gains in mind. Letting this plan breeze through Congress would be a drastic mistake.