In 1985 my husband was a Medical Resident at Harvard. In 1992, we became permanent residents of the United States. I went to law school in 92, and became a lawyer. We both worked and paid taxes. We raised two children who went to Ivy Leagues and both are now MDs (A radiologist and a Psychiatrists). They will begin to pay taxes while my husband and I near retirement age. Net gain for US—substantial. My husband was a doctor. And we need doctors. But we also need Construction workers, maids, gardeners, fruit pickers, chicken pluckers. But unlike a degree in Medicine, there are no visa categories for these jobs.
There are three main ways to Immigrate to the US. They are through: Business Sponsorship, Family Sponsorship and Asylum. Business Immigration, which I have been practicing for the past 20 plus years confines itself to highly educated or high net worth individuals. And no question, America needs them. But we also need folks to clean houses, mow our lawns, etc. These are not temporary jobs, yet they are useful jobs. However the only category available right now is for temporary workers which are seasonal—-like fruit pickers or summertime restaurant workers. These visas are not for long term. My house cleaners have been working for me since 1997. It bothers me that I cannot sponsor them, because there is no Business Immigration laws for that category. Family sponsorship is limited to only immediate family for Permanent Residency Holders or Citizens.
That leaves Asylum as the ONLY option for the folks in the Southern Borders. The Asylum law states that the Alien has to prove that: “alien’s life or freedom would be threatened on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion” This fear has to be credible, and supported by evidence. A vague fear that “our country is lawless, and gangs could kill me” is not enough. This is extremely hard to prove. Even if the alien is personally threatened, provable evidence is not there in most cases.
According to NPR, refugees have to pay eight thousand USD per person to come to US. Attorney’s charge 5-8K. So there is quite a bit of expense involved. And folks who can come up with that kind of money generally do not have credible fear, because they can bribe the “bad guys.” They are mostly coming for the same reason every immigrant comes to the US—to get a better life for themselves and their families. They work very hard. They construct our houses, clean them and add value to our economy. But again, we do not have the laws for this kind of business sponsorship.
Comes now Trump a bigot, a racist and an idiot. He doles out everything with a dollop of hate. When he met with this situation, instead of diffusing the situation, he resorted to hateful tweets. What resulted was the press sensationalizing the situation, more migrants coming in on fear that US will close the doors, and scant resources. They were being housed in terrible, heartbreaking conditions. Since these folks endured so much, they would be ideal workers, able and more than willing. We need these migrants.
ICE vs CONGRESS
ICE stands for Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It is their JOB to enforce the Immigration laws. But as we already established, the law is simply not there. Yet Congresswomen like Ocasio Cortez chose to criticize ICE. Yes, Trump is a racist. Despite his tweets, Trump does NOT control day to day operations of ICE. ICE is an Organization and by far they follow rules laid out by administrative decisions. The recent conditions in the border was caused by an upsurge on the amount of refugees coming in, and the facility being inadequate. To solve the problem we needed funding. And funding is provided not by the Executive, but by the legislature.
Additionally laws are made by the Congress—-not by the executive. But just like Trump, AOC will scream, and not actually do anything.
Solution vs Politics
We know that the Congress is divided. However, if the House creates employment-based categories, the Senate will most likely accept them. What the senate (with majority Republican) will not accept is a “path to citizenship.” On the other hand, Democrats will not do anything unless these migrants are given a path to citizenship, aka votes. Both parties are using migrants as pawns for their agenda.
My solution is: Forget Politics. Come together and sign employment based categories for all jobs. We need help with jobs like Maids, Gardeners, Home Health Care, Construction, etc. We baby boomers NEED that help, and we can pay for this help. Give them temporary work permits renewable if they are still employed. And then, if they can show employment for X number of years, such that their connection to their home country is dwindling, then let them apply for Green Card-Permanent Residency, and then 5 years from that time, apply for Citizenship. Democrats, by then the millennials will control, and if the Republican Party does not change, they will cease to exist.