Monday, August 29, 2005

Immigration

California Conservative has this to say about immigration, and I can't find anything about it with which I disagree:

Immigration is a privilege. This seems to be forgotten. Thus, it’s not only fair but proper to consider that people entering a nation should understand and appreciate (dare I say adopt) the adopting country’s history and values.

Diversity is delightful, but not at the expense of national unity.

5 comments:

KimJ said...

Immigration is definitely a privilege. My Canadian husband and I have approached the process with that point of view since the beginning. My husband frequents a website for people seeking spouse and fiance(e) visas into the USA and he gets quite annoyed when people suggest it is a right.

When someone tells me that state civil unions preserve all the rights of marriage, I point to our experiences as a counterexample. If my husband Craig were instead my wife Christina, we wouldn't even have the chance of this privilege.

Darren said...

Hear hear.

Bored Huge Krill said...

I guess I should say something here, since I'm an immigrant myself :-)

Just by way of information, I'm a Brit (technically - I consider myself an Oregonian now despite status and however impertinently) and I moved with my family to Oregon 5 1/2 years ago. I was recruited for a job in Oregon by somebody looking for a very particular (and, at that time, very rare) expertise, and I happened to have been practising in that field for 5 years at the time.

My employer has probably expended many 10s of 1000s of $$$ with lawyers so far, and we're by no means done. My status is still H1-B, but I have passed the labor certification stage - for immigration via employment, one is required to prove that no US citizen has the expertise necessary to fulfill the job requirements. It's actually quite arduous, despite what some might say (provided, of course, that one is not bending the rules, as does occur more often than it should). Following certification of the necessary documents by multiple govenrment agencies, I'm now in the process of getting approval by the state department, the labor department and the citizenship and immigration service (formerly the INS, now part of the department of homeland security) for adjustment of status (aka a "green card") which will ultimately make me a permanent immigrant alien in a couple of years or so. Having held that status for a period (I think it's now 8 years, but varies regularly) I will become eligible to apply for US citizenship.

Accordant with all of that, my belief and expectation is that I accept that I immigrate to the US by choice, and in doing so it becomes imcumbent upon me to accept the responsibilities and loyalties that go along with it. None of that is an issue with me; as I said, my immigration to the US is by my own choice. Nobody forces me to do it, and it is only right that in doing so I respect the requirements placed on me as a potential future citizen.

What is quite maddending to me is to see illegal immigration continually apologized for, and more so, to see immigrants complain about any constraints which might be imposed on them when they get here. It doesn't seem too hard for me to figure out: If I choose to immigrate to the US, I take on board the cultural constraints embodied therein. And if I am required to submit to an arduous four year process to prove that I am a net benefit to the US economy, why should illegal shortcuts be tolerated?

The US has a lot going for it. That's why I came here. I also have a significant contribution to make, and have been required to so demonstrate. If anybody else wishes to immigrate to the US, I see no reason for them to be excused the expectation that they follow its customs, understand and appreciate its history and submit loyalty to it...

[/rant] :-)

Regards
Krill

Darren said...

Krill, excellent comment.

I don't think anyone would disagree that the process of becoming a US citizen is arduous and often stupid. And you're right about illegal immigration.

Guess all I'll add here is "thanks for coming!"

Greg said...

Kim,

I think there's a real possibility for two nations as close as the United States and Canada to ease immigration. Politicians, though, never like to allow any process that might take away jobs from their voters. Thus these requirements that you have to demonstrate that no locals can do the job.

We can have a person move from Washington to take a job opportunity in Oregon without checking if someone in Oregon could do it. It's too bad that can't be extended to British Columbia.