This is a new one. I've seen it twice now, this yesterday--
Before that, on the 17th of June.
Is it related to the other new sign on this abandoned laundry? An 'open-hand' policy? Or 'a fair shake'? Or are the hands just an art project?
My paternal great grandmother, and both my maternal great-grandparents are immigrants. On my dad's dad's side, I can supposedly join the D.A.R. (provided, of course, that they'd have me, fat chance) which means our immigrant status is oh so very on that side. All of the more recent immigrants needed a boat and a stop at Ellis Island.
If they had been born in Mexico, would they have walked over that bold black line? I know they would have. Two of the three of them were renegades of a sort.
Just now we have drug wars, terrorism, unemployment. The unemployment question is no different--during the 1800's, there were numerous bank failures, losses of work, floods of people looking to better themselves. Neither is the terror altogether different, although it tended to be union battles (both sides) and anarchists. It's the drugs, and that's not different. Old ladies took tincture of opium every day, marijuana and cocaine were legal, and so forth.
To be honest, I don't think it's the immigrants at all. I think it's a crisis in our society, that more people are at loose ends but don't know how to do anything.
I am not for illegal immigration, especially with the drug wars we have going on now, in every city and state in America, much less those in Mexico. I see from studying gangs how all races and all confederations are getting their product from elsewhere and ruining lives, families, cities, tax bases. The immigration/deportation cycle we have is facilitating networking and product dispersal/money laundering for illegal groups. Preventing illegal immigration is a good step--far better than deportation afterward, in terms of tax dollars spent and crime risk.
At the same time, I see entire crews from Mexico working (legally) on my street, re-doing sidewalks with brick patterns, edging strips, concrete smoothers, shovels, sand, sweat on their backs. We have taught ourselves that the professions matter the most, that they are the ones worth emulating. As a society, we specialized in paper-pushing, and that was a mistake. As a result, we have left our poor behind, without training, and had to import the labor that fixes things for us. Our poor don't even look with longing at a bricklaying job. At least that's what I see around here. It just doesn't enter in.
Don't get me wrong: all races are on the job. It's just that the skilled work is coming from elsewhere.
The immigration issue does not break across party lines, it breaks across economic markets. Are you priced too high to hire? Can you afford to hire the American worker? Is your city paying for multiple free rides for cost-cutting employers and migrating employees?
Immigration (legal) and migration (legal or otherwise) is the natural behavior of an international labor market. As such, it will always happen in response to wage differentials. And benefits differentials. People flock to prosperity, and this is a sign that we still have it, at least in relative terms.
From a city's point of view, it can only afford to offer services to those who pay for them via taxes. Immigrants pay sales tax. But they send their disposable income elsewhere, which cuts down on buying/saving/investing at home. The Irish did this too. They sent money to Ireland during the Famine. I imagine all races, creeds, and nationalities have done this on their successive waves to America.
For their employers, this international labor market provides the wage differential (that's falling wages, folks) plus a lack of concern for items such as sick leave, harassment suits, expense accounts. First we priced ourselves out of the market, then we benefited ourselves out of the market. Then we gave up on entire markets. That's no way to roll.
1. When unions wake up from their torpid sleep, they'll figure out the only way to fix this is to go international, spend more time thinking in terms of markets instead of lobbying governments with jurisdictions that stop at big black lines on a map..
2. In the meantime, cities are fighting a holding action against international markets in labor--and international markets in drugs. Besides enforcement issues, which are deeply problematic, local jurisdictions are going to have to learn how to get the money and stop the free ride.
3. Workers are going to have to refine their ideas of a suitable wage. Not that this makes me happy.
We are undergoing a massive adjustment, whether we like it or not. No end in sight. But there's opportunity out there for many corrections that will work.