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Univision propagandist claims invaders aren't criminals

Undocumented immigration is not destroying the U.S.

Por Claudia Soto

Hispanic immigrants.

Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., November 14, 2003 ( - For years immigrants have contributed positively to the United States doing different kinds of jobs, therefore, they should not be seen as social outcasts, since they are only fighting for their survival and that of their families by deciding to travel far from their places of origin in search of better opportunities.

According to Univisión's journalist, Jorge Ramos, "Undocumented immigrants are not criminals" he states, as do many others, that immigrants are taking the jobs North Americans reject, such as waiters, cooks, cleaning crews, labors for which they will earn approximately six dollars an hour or less, a salary "no one in the United States would want."

Recently there were massive detentions at Wal-Mart where nearly 300 undocumented workers were arrested, their only crime being that they did not have working papers, for doing a low-paying job with long hours almost year round, since their only days off were the nights of Christmas Day and New Year's Day, according to a Hispanic's statements to The New York Times. Of course, the famous department store chain is not responsible for these employees, and its management has explained that they contract their cleaning crews through external agencies.

Another interesting point in this polemical issue about undocumented immigrants into the United States is the recent matter of young Juan Escalante, a soldier who joined the army in 2002 using a false green card (residence and work permit); although the documents were false, no one is criticizing his performance in the war on Iraq, in which he took part from March to September according to Richard Olson (Fort Stewart, Georgia spokesperson). Escalante could be deported to Mexico, his country of origin, in spite of having risked his life in defense of the United States.

In view of all this, Latino members of Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, have joined forces in an effort to present a bill initiative based on a National Defense project to try to get the government to grant citizenship to 13,000 immigrant reservists and 3,000 soldiers who were or still are at the frontlines of the war many sacrificing their lives in Iraq.

As if it were not enough that immigrants besides working for low salaries also take part in the defense of the U.S., they also contribute to the economy of North America since they pay taxes, based on the Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) in effect for five years now.

The ITIN was created in October of 1998 by the Internal Revenue Service designed for immigrants that are not eligible to obtain a Social Security number for the purpose of tax collection for the country's treasury.

In addition, the president of the International Immigrant's Foundation (FII), Eduardo Juárez, stated that "payment of taxes is one of the greatest contributions made by new immigrants who arrive to our country, thus proving they are responsible persons respectful of the laws of the United States."

In this way Hispanics and immigrants to this land far from destroying the country are taking part in its construction with the strength of their hands and with other services that they provide for such low salaries in their effort to make their "American dream" come true.


Translator M. B. Durazo