Tuesday, August 09, 2005


This column at Jewish World Review by Ruben Navarette Jr. puzzles me somewhat. Mostly becuase I don't quite understand what he wants. The column is about immigrant workers and the all-to0-often deplorable conditions that they work under (in this column, farm workers in CA). He agrees with President Bush's description of the jobs they do - "jobs that Americans won't do." He dismisses the idea of Americans doing the work for the right price (implying that strict immigration enforcement is what he has in mind, but at the same time deplores the "guest worker" plans proposed by Republicans. Why? Because it makes it too easy for employers to get more low-wage workers. His solution? Don't legally recognize them as having a right to work here, but treat them as if they do. Chaos!

Wouldn't it be better to figure out what we should allow, instead? Either allow guest workers or not, and if one does subject their employers to the same rules that apply to citizen workers. Don't mess around with this half-in, half out nonsense.

One other thing. There are large parts of the country that do not have lots of illegal immigrant labor, and the dirty jobs there get done - by Americans. Perhaps part of the problem is the willingness of some people near the borders to use the presence of illegal workers to drive down wages? Hmm?

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