Immigrants need the legal right to participate in the economy and be paid market wages

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • jqw Rural, UT
    June 13, 2014 9:32 p.m.

    Interesting that after publishing a MyView OpEd opposing reform or amnesty, My view: Real immigration reform: keep important virtues in mind,’ that the next day they need to post another plea for reform, or amnesty, and cheap labor.

    I suppose you must admire DNews consistency on the issue and their continuing deviousness in redefining terms, and still wonder why the editors of the supposed conservative news voice of Utah would openly support lawlessness. This from supposed members of a group that purportedly believes in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.

  • WatchDog Provo, UT
    June 12, 2014 1:21 p.m.

    When do the rest of "...get the right to participate..." By breaking the law?

  • Invisible Hand Provo, UT
    June 12, 2014 9:17 a.m.

    It's funny how conservatives rail against big government except when it comes to immigration they want a police state to go around investigating who they hired and passing out fines and jail terms, militarizing the border and so on. Let's have a little intellectual honesty and consistency.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    June 12, 2014 8:44 a.m.

    VST: "...Now Joe, just how do you propose we do that?" (Deny jobs, healthcare, etc. to illegals)

    Easy! Fine any and all employers who hire illegal aliens. If an employer knows that he will be fined a few thousand dollars every time he/she is caught employing someone here illegally, they won't do it.

    Funny how liberals believe our government can do anything (Obamacare, regulate energy, food stamps for everyone, etc.) and yet enforcing our immigration laws is just "TOO HARD".

  • tenx Santa Clara, UT
    June 12, 2014 6:45 a.m.

    Immigrants have no problem to work. I know many who stood in line and paid fees and then immigrated. However when someone sneaks across the border, they are an illegal alien and do not have rights to work here. Same in the 24 countries that I have worked in. The author of this article needs to brush up on the meaning of an immigrant. Viva LEGAL immigration.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 12, 2014 5:55 a.m.

    Re: "I am not a liberal – I am a life-long conservative Republican."

    You're a liberal. That quality is assigned by actual beliefs and actions, not by self-declaration.

    Just ask Eric Cantor.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    June 11, 2014 1:57 p.m.

    VST: "...there are so many illegal residents here (millions of them) that there is no way on God’s green earth will they ever be sent back to their home countries."

    You don't have to SEND them back. Just deny them jobs, free education and healthcare, and all the other government handouts and they will go back home all by themselves. They got here on their own, they can go back without any of our help as well.

    It is a complete falicy to think that we must spend millions of dollars in transportation costs and have to round up every illegal alien in order to solve this problem. We just have to eliminate all the things that currently draw them to cross our border illegally. If those things are only available to LEGAL immigrants and other citizens, then everyone will get in line and follow the immigration process.

    If you can sneak in the theater through the side door without a ticket, why pay for one and wait in line? That might work for a while, but then don't complain when no one wants to make movies anymore.

  • Brer Rabbit Spanish Fork, UT
    June 11, 2014 1:49 p.m.

    I didn't know that "immigrants" were having a problem. In typical DesNews fashion the editors have carefully included illegal aliens as immigrants in order to gain sympathy. There is chaos at the border far beyond what the Border Patrol can deal with. This is being caused by zero interior enforcement of immigration law by ICE as well as zero enforcement of laws prohibiting the employment of illegal labor.

    In addition to zero enforcement we have also media outlets such as the DesNews giving hope to all South of the Border that if they can just get across the border they will not be deported, and they would be right.

    There is no labor shortage but rather a labor surplus. If this were not the case unemployment would be less and wages would be increasing rather than stagnant. When employers, the Chamber of Commerce, and illegal immigrant sympathizers such as the DesNews support amnesty or legalization they are encouraging more illegal immigration, making the border impossible to control.

    Encouraging more legal and illegal immigration shows total disregard for the American worker. Wages are a product of supply and demand.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    June 11, 2014 1:43 p.m.

    If the paper truly has a conviction that what it is calling for is morally right, why the need for euphemisms, such as "immigration reform?" Why not call it what it really is: a reward for illegality, moral corruption of children (who are taught that illegality eventually will pay), playing unfair with the millions around the world who ALSO would like to come to America but who respect its laws, mockery and abdication of the rule of law, and disregard for the needs of Americans who suffer as a direct result of illegal immigration?

    It isn't about morality; it is about ulterior motivations of various special interest groups in the state, and propaganda.

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    June 11, 2014 1:31 p.m.

    Yes, the current immigration system is broken, but who broke it?
    Answer: Liberal Democrats who refuse to enforce the law.
    Is there human suffering? Yes caused by the same people who broke the system.

    If you want to fix the system begin by actually using it.
    Make it impossible for people who come here illegally to stay (can't get work, can't get housing).
    Implement a reasonable legal immigration system.

    When Democrats make it illegal to ask if somebody is a citizen when signing up voters under "Motor - Voter" you have to know what their goal is.

    Democrats refuse to enforce the borders and vilify anyone who wants to.
    Democrats refuse to have any meaningful requirement for proof of citizenship when signing up to vote.
    Every time Democrats talk amnesty (comprehensive immigration reform) illegals flood the borders.
    Democrats are using these poor people as pawns in a political game.

  • Invisible Hand Provo, UT
    June 11, 2014 1:20 p.m.

    @2 bits: So who are these wise people in government who know exactly what kinds of workers we need and how many of each? I thought conservatives didn't believe in central planning.

    Maybe we should look in the mirror when we are assigning blame for people not being able to make it in their own countries. Our country distorts global markets for farm produce with all kinds of farm subsidies and tariffs. The poor Mexican farmer can't compete with all the cheap subsidized American corn. Is he just supposed to starve? It's no wonder they come here looking for a job. If we want them to stay in their own countries, let's level the playing field so they can compete.

    The reason people get abused is we have these silly laws. Let's get rid of the bad laws and liberalize immigration policy. I'm not saying we make them all citizens right away, but at least legitimize them, recognize that they are growing our economy, allow them to work legally and pay taxes.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    June 11, 2014 1:09 p.m.

    To "Shaun" I don't think you understand capitalism. There is not a shortage of labor, nor is there a shortage of " market driven pay". The places that offer minimum wage jobs are paying what the market demands. If you have a position that requires no special skills and does not require a certain age for that position, and you have 100 people applying for a job you advertise as minimum wage, you have found the market demand for that pay level for that job.

    To "marxist" you are right, they are being exploited. We should end their exploitation by shipping them back to their countries of origin.

    In reading many of the comments here, I see that many have very short memories. The other day there was an article telling about a woman who applied over 8 years ago to come here legally. When she finally got word back, she was told that her child could not come becuase he was over 21. The boy was 13 when she applied.

    The problem isn't the businesses, the problem is the government and the red-tape that has made the process so slow.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 11, 2014 1:08 p.m.

    Re: "Those who are advocating that illegals have no right to earn a salary here are not facing reality."

    Funny how liberals always want us to "face reality" when it comes to immigration and some of their other sacramental issues. But, if you engage them about gun rights, taxation and fiscal policy, voting integrity, Big Government over-regulation, labor and unemployment, pro-life, particularly late-term abortions, environmental laws and regulations, etc., etc. -- they're perfectly content to remain proud residents of an imaginary La-La Land.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 11, 2014 12:46 p.m.

    @Invisible Hand,

    I'm not against ALL immigration. Just the kind where they sneak across the border and we don't have any say, and our government doesn't even know they are here! They could be a criminal for all we know...

    It hurts America (when people not qualified to find work in Mexico come here). It also hurts Mexico, Nicaragua, etc (if their best people flea to America). We need encourage some to stay and save their own country.

    When you immigrate legally.. the government has some say in it. When sneak in... they don't. Which is bad for us... and bad for them.

    When my ancestors came to America they had to prove they didn't have any diseases, prove they had some money to support themselves while they got established, and an education and skills they could use to support themselves long term and contribute to society.

    When you sneak across the border and hide in our country... it's bad for everybody. YOU tend to get abused (paid poorly) and society tends to get abused (when you find American streets aren't paved with gold, and you can't support your family).

  • Invisible Hand Provo, UT
    June 11, 2014 11:59 a.m.

    It's not often that I agree with Esquire, but he is exactly right on every point here. Well said.

    @2 bits: It sounds like you are opposed to all immigration then. We don't want the "best" or the "worst" so do you want to slam the door on everyone, or do you have some great plan to define "best" and "worst" and then only accept people who you define as "just right".

    Here's the reality. Do we as Americans want to be able to afford fresh fruits and vegetables as anything other than a luxury item? That's just one industry among dozens. There are lots of poor foreigners who would love to work here, it improves their lives and makes life better here too. Immigrants grow our economy and everybody wins. I don't understand the paranoia about this.

  • A Guy With A Brain Enid, OK
    June 11, 2014 11:56 a.m.

    Article title: "In our opinion: Immigrants need the legal right to participate in the economy and be paid market wages"

    LEGAL immigrants have this right.

    ILLEGAL immigrants do not have this right.

    Can anyone imagine Mexico saying this to their illegal aliens? Or Canada? Or Japan? Or Germany, Russia, Italy or Greece?


    Problem: America has millions and millions of illegal immigrants.

    Problem: America has millions and millions of legal citizens without a job.

    Solution: send the illegal aliens home and give their jobs to our legal citizens without a job. If our legal citizens don't want to work then let them starve.

    Problem solved.

    I mean, what a novel or go hungry.

    Sure it's demanding, but reality is no sissie.

  • peacemaker Provo, UT
    June 11, 2014 11:52 a.m.

    No getting around it. The illegals are criminals the minute they cross the border. We still allow them to remain and then reward them for their illegal acts. We have in place procedures for people to enter this country legally. Why are they allowed to be an exception to our laws? Is it a political problem? Seems so. The vast amount of money spent could be better used for the establishment of a realistic and enforceable procedure to be applied to all people from all nations who seek citizenship within our laws. Our laws were successful for many decades in creating the diversified citizenry of this country. All illegals should be deported to their countries of origin and then allowed to work within our established laws.If the laws are bad we certainly have enough intelligent law makers who should, laying politics aside, be able to deal with that. The problem with politicians who use those people as political fodder needs to be addressed with serious commitment.

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    June 11, 2014 11:40 a.m.

    Unemployment is high in the US. Unskilled workers are unable to find work because illegals have taken the jobs. They are willing to work for sub minimum wages. When was the last time you saw an American working construction?

    Don't even try to tell me that American's are not willing to do this work. I know many unemployed construction workers and every project in town is staffed with illegal aliens.

    Dear Deseret News,

    Please tell us how our liberty is to be preserved when importing illegal alien voters from south of the border is a cornerstone of the Liberals plan to destroy this country? The constitution is hanging by a thread and you are filing that thread away.

    "Democracy is not a permanent form of government. It can only last until the people discover that they can vote themselves gifts from the public treasury. From that point forward the majority always votes for the candidate offering the most, until the nation collapses from financial mismanagement. A democracy is always followed by a dictatorship." (Alexis DeToqueville)

    I never thought that I would see the day when an LDS owned newspaper would openly support lawlessness.

  • Big Bubba Herriman, UT
    June 11, 2014 11:01 a.m.

    It is pretty clear from this and past articles that conservative entities like Deseret News, KSL, and the Sutherland Institute take a very soft line on illegal immigration, yet so many conservative Utahns reject this brand of soft amnesty. Why is that? Because conservatives realize that soft amnesty will encourage more illegal immigration. It will make the problem worse.

  • aceroinox Farmington, UT
    June 11, 2014 10:55 a.m.

    To begin with, we need a definition of terms: illegals are not "immigrants". Immigrants are those who follow the legal immigration process and are entitled to seek work and work. While I feel sympathy for illegals, many of whom have dire circumstances in their home country, I have more sympathy for the millions of citizens and immigrants who cannot find work. We do need immigration reform, but it should not include amnesty for illegals. Let them return to their countries and get in line behind those who have paid the price to be here legally, many of whom have already been "in line" for years.

    Let's provide a rational immigration process that accommodates real needs for our nation's businesses. The fact is, we will have no idea what those real needs are until the artificial component of illegals in the workforce is removed, and we can find a natural balance. In the meantime, we can each do our part by refusing to employ illegals, or any contractor who employs them.

  • MapleDon Springville, UT
    June 11, 2014 10:11 a.m.

    Legal immigrants and citizens are able to legally work in this country. However, no one is "entitled" to any job. It needs to be earned first.

    Illegal immigrants have no right to any job in this country.

    Only the most cold-hearted and greedy would demand that a flood of cheap labor be imported into this country when millions of our citizens continue to struggle with unemployment.

    There's no greater treason than to do something good (such as give American jobs to illegal immigrants) for the wrong reason.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 11, 2014 10:01 a.m.

    Re: "If we open the gates... the following 2 situations are the likely outcome."

    For the record, it's not "if" we open the gates. The gates are already wide open.

    Witness the thousands of unaccompanied children being sent across the wire by desperate Central-American parents, who are now being dumped by Obama's ICE on the streets of Phoenix to punish Arizona for standing up to Obama on the amnesty issue.

    We're in the middle of a new Jimmy Carter-like Mariel boatlift -- just without the boats.

    Obama remains committed to booting Carter from his position as worst modern American president.

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    June 11, 2014 9:33 a.m.

    Agreed. And let's be honest. You're talking about amnesty. And you're for it. And you're completely right.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 11, 2014 9:29 a.m.

    Re: "Immigrants need the legal right to participate in the economy . . . ."

    Legal immigrants already have that right. They've had it throughout the history of the Republic. It's guaranteed in the Constitution. Legal permanent resident aliens have exactly the same right to participate in the economy as any American.

    So, the real, hidden agenda here is amnesty for illegals.

    It's sad that a "journalist" would intentionally hide that agenda at the tail end of his opinion piece, attempting to disingenuously suggest to low-information Utahns that America discriminates against all immigrants.

    With the easily predictable defeat of immigration "reformists," like Eric Cantor, conservatives will have to be more and more vigilant, making sure the amnesty issue isn't newspeak-coded or otherwise hidden amongst other high-sounding, but phony political issues.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 11, 2014 9:16 a.m.

    IMO... We need to focus on improving the economy, security, and liberty, where they live, instead of making a path to America.

    If we open the gates... the following 2 situations are the likely outcome.

    1. If the best people from that country come (as some people pretend is happening now)... The less educated, less employable people get left behind and become the majority. Sure some good people get out... but their country goes downhill.

    2. If the less educated, less employable people are the ones crossing the border at night with all their possessions in a grocery bag, who can't find jobs in CostaRica, Nicaragua, or Mexico... and are willing to do ANYTHING, and take ANY job, at ANY wage in the US... then they gradually become the majority in our country, and OUR country goes downhill.

    We should not be taking the BEST people from these countries (and leaving the rest of the population to live with drug dealers and corrupt politicians elected by the dregs of society). And we should not be taking the WORST people from these countries.. and turning our country into Mexico, or Nicaragua.

    June 11, 2014 8:46 a.m.

    I stand with the majority posting here. Legal immigrants have a right to participate in the economy AND be paid market wages. The trouble is there are too many illegal aliens flooding our borders, and our useless politicians have done nothing about that. Although, one of their constitutional responsibilities is to protect our borders.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 11, 2014 8:31 a.m.

    The editorial is dead on. I urge a fresh approach to this issue. We need to make it easy for people to come and provide their services. It will then reflect reality, encourage a free market system, and cut on the tragic human impact of the current system.

    @ RichardB, saying there is plenty of labor without immigrants is one thing, but it does not reflect reality. Your entire comment is not correct. I believe it is based on a lack of understanding of what is going on.

    Sadly, the analysis of the Cantor defeat, in that it will shut down any chance of immigration reform, is probably true. The are few profiles in courage in Congress.

  • watchman Salt Lake City, UT
    June 11, 2014 8:27 a.m.

    There would be no problem if the illegals were not here. If existing laws were enforced, there would be fewer illegals to add to the problem.

    Simple solution....enforce our laws.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 11, 2014 8:02 a.m.

    Come on, at least be honest when writing this stuff.

    Make sure you point out the you want to just abandon enforcement of our immigration laws, and to give the same privileges to people who are criminals by coming here in violation of those laws as to the hard working, play by the rules legal immigrants.

    This is as bad as advocating for illegal drug sellers to be given licenses as pharmacists.

    Laws apply to all people (or should, anyway) and people who break some laws do not get the benefits earned by those who obey the laws. And, criminals who break laws are supposed to be punished.

    What next, amnesty for bank robbers and rapists? If not, why do you discriminate against some criminals and not others?

    Legal immigration is welcome and beneficial, but illegal immigration is a criminal act to be punished, not rewarded by jobs, welfare, housing, amnesty or anything else.

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    June 11, 2014 7:34 a.m.

    Undocumented(illegal) immigrants have one right and only one right. That is to be deported. Immediately.

  • U-tar Woodland Hills, UT
    June 11, 2014 7:12 a.m.

    DN forgot to put Legal in front of Immigrants in the headline, or did they do that on purpose. This paper is turning into a real lefty.

  • happy2bhere clearfield, UT
    June 11, 2014 6:39 a.m.

    I'm not in favor of the minimum wage law, but looking at it logically, if those low wage jobs were about 15 an hour, then many of our citizens would take them, which would fill the need of low wage workers, and more importent it would take away the need for the U.S. to have illegal, and massive amounts of third world immigrants coming here. American workers should come first before any non citizen gets consideration on anything. And I will say that I as a citizen would be willing to pay a little extra for the product or service that the 15 an hour employee would require.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    June 11, 2014 12:44 a.m.

    "The U.S. government’s employment of immigrants in detention proves the point that undocumented workers need legal rights to participate in the economy, to work and to be paid a market wage – not a prison wage – for their labors."

    Certainly use of labor in prison is pure exploitation - in prison they are not being compensated for the value they add. It's got to stop. But to say that this freed labor will be paid a "market" wage working for fast food is open to question. There is ample collusion among fast food vendors, e.g. McDonalds, Burger King, KFC, etc. as to what their employees will be paid. In a particular area there will be little variation. So is this "market" wage a fair wage?

    If we are going to turn lose a lot of imprisoned labor to work in fast food, fast food needs to be unionized to protect workers already there.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    June 11, 2014 12:25 a.m.

    There is no labor shortage only shortage of market driven pay. If Mcdonalds or any business can not find workers for the amount of money they are offering then they need to raise the wage and/or working conditions. It is simple economics.

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    June 11, 2014 12:21 a.m.

    Immigrants (legal) have the right to work. People here illegally have no right under US labor and immigration laws.

    There is no shortage of low income workers, there is a shortage of honest businessmen willing to pay the market rate for legal labor. If they can't find people to work for what they pay, it is their responsibility to lure workers with higher wages and better benefits.

    Greed has left the farms and moved into the city.