We Need Immigrants

If you are not a Native American then you are an immigrant or a descendant of immigrants to this country. It amazes me how many people forget this. A number of years back immigrating to America was the dream of many people from around the world. People came and worked hard to make a life in this country. Often times those who came worked jobs that were lower on the economic ladder just to have a job. Our country came to depend on that labor. People who would pick fruits and vegetables, take care of our elderly in nursing homes, change bed pans in hospitals, cut the grass at your country club, wash dishes, pick up trash, take care of your children. We needed them.

Then we elected people who tried to keep people out of the country. Yes, they said they didn’t want illegal immigrants, but they also made it difficult and unwelcoming for legal immigrants. Soon we became a country that many people we would be happy to have here didn’t want to come to.

Over the last few years the number of new people coming in legally has fallen to a new low, according to Pew Research. More Mexican born immigrants are returning to Mexico than come, both legal and illegal. Why should you care?

This weekend three successful restaurants in Durham, Vin Rouge, Mateo and Gocciolona had to be closed on a weekend night due to lack of staff. These are small businesses that can not survive long without enough staff. The lack of immigration is hurting American business owners as well as their employees.

As baby boomer age, they retire and there are not enough workers to back fill their jobs. Many of the people who are “America First” are not going to have people to take care of them in their golden years.

We need to become a more friendly and welcoming country again. People who say they don’t want “others” to come and take their jobs are not the ones trying to hire people to keep their businesses alive. There are more jobs than people willing to work them. It is going to take time to earn back our reputation as a good place to move to as an immigrant.

Immigrants built this country. It has kept the country growing and thriving. We can’t just be a country of tech workers, we need workers at all levels. If you are worried about inflation let more immigrants in to work.

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