Myths and Facts of the Illegal Immigration Debate

The illegal immigration debate is gearing up again.  As the bill gets closer to a congressional vote, the debate will become progressively heated.  During the discourse, you will hear facts and fiction about illegal immigration and what it means to you.  To head this off at the pass, here are some myths and facts about illegal immigration.

Myth #1:

Immigrants need comprehensive immigration reform


Immigrant vs. illegal alien

An immigrant is a person who is granted the right to live permanently in the US.  An immigrant has completed the process to become a citizen of the US.  An alien is defined as a person in a country who is not a citizen of that country.  An illegal alien is a person who is in a country who is not a citizen of the country and is there against the immigration laws.

Immigrants do not need comprehensive immigration reform (amnesty) because they have followed the immigration laws and process. On the other hand, illegal aliens need amnesty because they want to avoid the punishment associated with illegally entering the US.

Amnesty was granted to approximately 3 million illegal aliens in 1986.  Today, there are 12 million to 20 million illegal aliens in the United States.  To reward illegal aliens with the very thing they broke the law to obtain, only encourages more illegal immigration.

Myth #2:

Most illegal aliens are not criminals, they are just coming to the US to find a job & work hard


Illegal aliens have crossed our borders or overstayed their visas against our immigration laws;  each person is a criminal and this is their first crime.

In a trial run of the 287(g) program in February 2009, the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s office flagged over 900 inmates for deportation who were charged with the following offenses & this is just a sampling: murder (13), armed robbery (28), felony drug offense (154), DUI (48), kidnapping (11), battery (15), rape (15), child molestation (23).

What about the work situation & jobs Americans won’t do?

According to a forum sponsored by Kennesaw State University featuring Vicente Fox, Mexico’s unemployment rate is 7%.  The unemployment rate in the US is over 9.7%.  It is not logical to leave a place with lower unemployment to illegally arrive in one of higher unemployment.  Companies that hire illegal aliens are in violation of employment laws.  Illegal employment harms low-skilled, low-wage workers of all races but Blacks and native-born Hispanics are affected disproportionately.  When raids occur, poor and low-skilled Americans fill those jobs formerly held by illegal workers.

Myth #3:

The struggle of illegal aliens struggle is comparable to the civil rights struggle of the 1960s.  Illegal immigration is a civil rights issue.


Civil rights are reserved for the citizens of a nation.  In the 1953, the Supreme Court found that “The Bill of Rights is a futile authority for the alien seeking admission for the first time to these shores.  But once an alien lawfully enters and resides in this country, he becomes invested with the rights guaranteed by the Constitution to all people within our borders.” (Kwong Hai Chew v. Colding).  The illegal aliens have come here to the US to demand something that does not belong to them. They chose to leave a place where they had civil rights to a place where they have none.  By the way, it is not racist to desire enforcement of the US immigration laws.  One more point, illegal is not a race.

I’ll close with a statement from the late Barbara Jordan (D-TX) who was the first African-American Congresswoman elected from the deep South, a law professor, a recipient of the Nelson Mandela Award for Health and Human Rights and the Bill Clinton-appointed chairwoman of the Commission on Immigration Reform in 1995. Ms. Jordan stated what it would take gain credibility on immigration policy: “Those who should get in, get in; those who should be kept out, are kept out; and those who should not be here will be required to leave…It is both a right and a responsibility of a democratic society to manage immigration so that it serves the national interest.”

References & additional information:

Testimony of Barbara Jordan (3/29/1995) before the House Committee on Appropriations and others:

US Commission on Immigration Reform Recommendations: & Full report:

The Dustin Inman Society:


Center for Immigration Studies (CIS):

FAIR (Federation for American Immigration Reform):

~ by hunter7taylor on October 18, 2010.

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