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Saturday, May 8, 2010

5 biggest myths of immigration debunked

Originally posted at the Reform Immigration For America Blog

This week, former commissioner of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Services (now USCIS) wrote the latest in the “5 myths” column for the Washington Post. Doris Meissner, a senior fellow at the Migration Policy Institute, served as commissioner of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service from 1993 to 2000, and therefore knows better than most exactly how immigration in our country works.

The top 5 myths about immigration that she debunks are as follows:

1.Immigrants take jobs from American workers. (Not true. It’s not a zero-sum game here, people.)

2.Immigration is at an all-time high, and most new immigrants came illegally. (The all-time high was over 100 years ago.)

3.Today’s immigrants are not integrating into American life like past waves did. (People said this same thing about past waves of immigrants too.)

4.Cracking down on illegal border crossings will make us safer. (She debunks the conflation of ‘border security’ with the ‘war on terrorism’. They are, in fact, not one in the same.)

5.Immigration reform cannot happen in an election year. (Pretty sure you guys can guess that this is also not true.)

You should read the full article for Meissner’s explanations, but the basic ideas behind these myths are important to understand. We should all strive to educate others about why debunking these myths is a crucial part of our fight.


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