The Santa Ana Sentinel

U.S. Finally Admits to Dependency on Immigrant Labor

Posted in Editorial, Immigration Reform by Omar Ávalos Gallegos on February 21, 2013

The L.A. Times reports that, “Labor, business leaders reach agreement on outline of immigration plan.”

It’s about time. No, it’s long overdue.

It has long been taboo to admit that this country is dependent on immigrant, especially undocumented, labor.

Fact: The U.S. has ALWAYS been dependent on undocumented immigrant labor, the migratory flow in the second half of the twentieth century leading up to now is nothing new.

Fact: In 1900, the U.S. needed laborers for its growing agricultural sector in California and they deliberately tried to get Mexican laborers here. That’s right, the U.S. wanted these workers here. When the U.S. didn’t get the satisfactory amount of numbers, in 1906 they tried to entice Mexican immigrant field workers by offering them Citizenship! That’s right, they handed out Citizenship.

There was just one small detail.

It was okay to have workers come in to work the fields, or make bricks, but they were not supposed to leave those sectors of the economy. There was to be no social ascension for people of Mexican descent.

The U.S., without outright saying it, because it’s “politically correct” to be hush hush, in action wanted to make a second-class slave force out of Mexican people. And it didn’t matter if you happened to be born here of Mexican parents. Don’t believe me? Ever heard of when Americans of Mexican descent were uprooted and forced to Mexico in the 1930’s? What’s that? They didn’t teach you that in Laguna? South Orange County? New York?

Being hush has been the norm all of this time, with red and blue politicians pandering to bigots nationwide.

But guess what. Fast forward and this country is as ever dependent on undocumented Mexican labor as it has ever been, if not more. Oh what would P.F. Chang’s, Denny’s, all the downtown Santa Ana restaurants, all the restaurants in Irvine, Laguna, the L.A. westside, or you name it be without this workforce? They wouldn’t exist. And this California economy, that contributes soooo much to the U.S. of A would collapse.

Truth be told, these lands in the modern-day American southwest, were ALWAYS going to have something to do with Mexican people, with or without the two-year Mexican-American War (1846-48), and whether or not we of Mexican descent pay taxes to Washington D.C. or México D.F. Mexican people are a determining and deciding factor in this equation.

It’s time to stop being ingrates, learn THIS history of the Mexican migratory pattern into this country, WHICH IS AMERICAN HISTORY WHETHER YOU ADMIT IT OR NOT, and return this debt of gratitude.

Obama & Co. can start by overhauling the absurd and unjust eight-year wait for people to get a green card. Eight years followed by five years for a still not guaranteed Citizenship?

Enough! Tear down this injustice!

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