The immigration reform debate has always created alliances uncommon in regular domestic political battles, as illustrated in this LA Times story.
So moderate and upper-class Republicans and liberals join together. Working-class Democrats and working-class Republican often band together in opposition, joining many of those who live in the area most impacted by the smuggling of illegal immigration — Arizona of late.
It’s all about who is harmed and who is hurt by immigration, seems to me.
I know that it’s fashionable to call those opposed to immigration reform racists or bigots. I don’t see that. I think that’s specious, bogus and facile — an ad hominem attack that mostly reflects someone wanting to silence someone else, not address a point of view.
I’m quite sure there are some racists out there. But really, your feeling on immigration reform corresponds most strongly to whether you perceive yourself bearing costs or reaping benefits from immigration.
Working-class black Americans seem, from my vantage point, particularly opposed to more immigration from Mexico and Central America. That’s not surprising, as those immigrants take jobs that those black Americans might well have had — and I’m not referring to fast food work, but to jobs in other, slightly higher paid sectors: truck driving, for example. Construction and landscaping are others.
Another group with some opposition to Mexican and Central American immigration — and for the same reason — are working-class Mexican-Americans. I’ve had fascinating conversations with some Mexican-Americans, whose relatives came here in the 1920s, about what they termed the “invasion” of Mexican immigrants who took the jobs in their neighborhoods (restaurant, car wash) that Mexican-American kids usually considered theirs.
When the LA Times publishes an immigration story (of any kind) the comment section quickly fills with illiterate, trashy, bickering comments. This one is interesting, though:
“I am a working class democrat.
I have wanted less immigration for years. Immigrtaion hurts the environment. depresses wages, steals job opportunities, reduces civic involvement, and creates divisions where none existed before to create a distraction from the rich at the top pitting black against brown against white, and left against right while those globalists Americans in name only at the top plunder the country.
For wanting less immigration I am called a racist,xenophobic,nativist, anti immigrant white supremacist bigot in order to shut me up.
The author of this article says it is an odd alliance pushing this new immigration bill . It is not odd that the elites want to import a new electorate more easily duped and more compliant and cheaper and younger workers for the open border cheap labor anti American worker lobby . It is merely a word the author is afraid to say if he has actually studied the situation and been able to put two and two together. It is simply called TREASON.”