Saturday, April 13, 2013

Passport Control Reform

There is a lot of talk in the United States and Mexico about reforming the immigration policy of the United States. I say Mexico, as they appear to not like what we do. I wasn’t sure that they had a say in the matter but it seems that so many do. One phrase that gets tossed around is Comprehensive Immigration Reform. I have no idea what that is supposed to mean but some view it as allowing people coming in the United States illegally to stay. I would ask; why would somebody come into a country illegally? There can be several answers to that but the obvious answer is opportunity. This is why so many people fled Europe in the 1800 and 1900’s to come to America. This is a big reason to this day. But the one element to immigration that applies to everyone coming into any country is that the receiving country has the right to say no. Yet some in my country (as well as from other countries) seem to think that the United States should not say no. I have a question for those having that opinion.

Before I ask my question, please remember that I am keeping my opinion out of this conversation. The question is being directed to those in the just say no camp, but the kick em out camp may have something to say as well. At long last, here is my question. If you are in favor of allowing undocumented workers to remain in the United Sates (under a variety of scenarios) what is your opinion of Passport Control at entry ports in the United States?

Being connected by land to Canada and Mexico, it is easy to simply walk into the States. Once here “visitors” can benefit from what we have to offer in the way of work, health care, education, etc. It is different when you come in off a plane or boat. Once you set foot on America you encounter a uniformed sentry who wants to know who you are and why you’re here. When I land overseas I am asked how long I plan to stay and will I be working. My answer that never gets a smile in return is “not long enough and don’t work at the office so why start now”. Countries want to know who is coming to the party. If you had a party at home and saw a stranger, wouldn’t you ask him how he got in? I think this a small part of the debate that is missing. I am not sure how my ending sentence should read. If we allow those coming in illegally should we allow those coming in with a passport? How do we tell one yes and the other no? So many people want to come and work here but are denied before they leave home. How do we bring parity to everyone?