This actually makes me really mad.
I’m not totally mad that there was an illegal immigration crackdown, per se. I’m very liberal, and having a lot of opinions about unions (good!) and internationalism in the form of bogus agreements like NAFTA (bad!), I do regard the influx of illegal immigrants as being potentially harmful to legal residents who want gainful employment in one of the few industries left that has a domestic base. Guest worker programs and illegal immigration (in some cases) can cause unfair competition for legal U.S. residents, just like sending factories overseas does. Illegal immigrants sometimes drive wages in certain fields below the Federal minimum. And as we saw here, people in the plant’s union didn’t like it:
Federal officials said a tip from a union member prompted them to start investigating several years ago… One worker caught in Monday’s sweep at the Howard Industries transformer plant said fellow workers applauded as immigrants were taken into custody.
I do agree that immigration can and should be limited, and those who violate those laws should not be surprised when those laws are enforced–though perhaps they don’t need to be enforced in cruel or harmful ways.
However, in the case of this factory, what exactly was the egregious harm done by illegals working there? These folks with false social security numbers are contributing to my retirement fund without any chance of getting that money back themselves! Pretty sweet deal, if you ask me, and no serious “criminality” aside from the falsification of identity in order to stay here. I don’t mean to trivialize that, but it’s a victimless crime in many ways.
The real criminals, though, are the factory bosses! With 600 potential illegals working at their plant, how could they possibly not know what was going on under their noses? No wonder the union folks are in an uproar. The bosses are either cutthroat or negligent, and either way, I’d hate to work at a factory where my union was being trivialized by blatant disregard for hiring laws.
And this is not the first time a factory has been raided, people have been deported, and their bosses were left free to begin the cycle all over again. It’s retarded. Those who dislike illegal immigrants for “cultural” reasons (i.e. racism) should stop spending so much time attacking the illegals and more time looking at how we as a culture condone the hiring of illegals by viciously deregulated corporations who want to stab us in the throat with our own dollars. If no one hired illegal immigrants, there would be no reason for illegal immigration to exist.