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Back You are here: Home Columns Weekly Columns For Your Consideration For Your Consideration: 1986 Immigration

For Your Consideration: 1986 Immigration

Contributing Writer

Twenty-seven years have elapsed since Congress’s last action to resolve the Nation’s illegal immigration problem; the program was poorly designed and executed, as a result Congress is faced with the task of revisiting the immigration dilemma. It’s clear that many of our elected officials have either not learned from past mistakes, or that they are more than willing to repeat those mistakes for some ulterior motive that is not being presented to the electorate. There is a small portion of the populating that would suggest that the latter explanation is the most likely answer to explain the actions of Congress.
The Nation does not need to go through the farce of another legislative immigration control program that is going to give exactly the same results as the 1986 immigration legislation; our elected representatives are being disingenuous with the rhetoric that they are using to sell the programs that are being put forth to address the immigration problem.
One needs to look at what is creating the problems that the 1986 legislation failed to accomplish if the nation is going to solve this problem.
The first apparent failure is the lack of control over the means of ingress and egress, people continued to come into and leave the country through a variety of means, so all we did was acknowledge that the population in place at that time would be accepted as legal.
It would appear that there was never any attempt to control access to a variety of benefits that were available to our legal citizens as opposed to the people that we in this country, but not citizens.
The government has shown that it can be very prolific at creating legislation, but it inevitably fails when it comes to consistent oversight of the programs it has developed; this fact can be verified by viewing the headlines related to the wide range of problems that the Nation is facing today.
The first approach should be to ascertain the status of every individual within the nation’s borders, and to simultaneously provide any non-citizens with an identification card if they pass a criminal background check, if they fail the background check they should be deported, or jailed.
The identification card could contain information as to the program the individual is here under and any expiration date for participation in the program. Other information such as residence, job status, picture, and physical description of the individual should also be provided with the card.
The information that is collected should be maintained in an active file that is continually updated as new information comes in on the individual. There will be some people that will suggest that this is creating a police state, but just consider the information that is held by a variety of governmental agencies on the average citizen, the information that is collected on non-citizens will not come close to the information that is held on legal citizens.
For the transition of the immigration program to be effective it should be approached in logical stages that show an authentic goal attainment for each of the stages. The process should be designed to protect non-citizens from abuse, but also take into account any additional cost that their presence is putting on the legal citizens of the country. The origins of the non-citizens should have no bearing on their ability to remain in country, unless there are questions related to security, nationality quotas, or skill sets. It would be irresponsible not to take into consideration the nation’s ability to take on the additional population, given the state of the country’s economy. There are many other factors that need to be addressed and the probability of these factors being overlooked with the comprehensive plan being proposed by the Senate are very high. The Senate plan is neither conservative nor comprehensive. The Nation should not have to put up with a replay of the 1986 immigration legislation, and the rhetoric that is being used would suggest that this is what the nation is in for if the Senate program is accepted.