Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor, and $465

Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free;

Give me a $465 application fee.

That’s right – President Obama’s new program of work permits for young undocumented aliens requires a $465 application fee.

For that you don’t get permanent status; no path to citizenship; no right to travel abroad; no guarantee the next president won’t revoke the program; or even that your application will be granted. You have to prove, among other things, that you arrived here before age 16. Good luck on that.*

But what is guaranteed is that the immigration gestapo will now have your name and address on file, the easier to deport you and yours, if they find some technical violation, which is all too frequent.

In fact, deportations have been stepped up under Obama. And it’s not just bad people. Many who are good citizens in all but name, assets to their communities, have been uprooted; children, born here and hence U.S. citizens, have had parents deported away; decent lives destroyed. The senseless horror stories go on and on.

If Obama’s new program was such a good idea, why did he wait till his fourth year? (Politics perhaps?) And why financially torture these people with a $465 fee? What a disgrace.

America has its head up its rear about immigration. A nation built by immigrants now views any would-be migrant with suspicion and hostility. Heck, we don’t even welcome tourists any more, who want to spend money here. When did you last need a visa to visit another country? But the U.S. subjects many tourists to a tortuous and costly visa ordeal that sometimes ends in no visa. What a disgrace.

And we need immigrants. They contribute more economically than they consume. They revitalize the country. High-tech businesses are hurting for help because foreign-born whiz-kids can’t get visas. We do have a program to let in entrepreneurs who want to build businesses – but it’s often a case of “you didn’t build that” because, guess what, we make it so difficult that many give up and take their talents elsewhere. We do let people come here to study but force them out once they get their degree. How crazy is that?

And those willing to risk their lives crossing a desert, or in a ramshackle raft – I want them here. Those courageous people have more of the personal qualities that made America great than a lot of folks born here. Sending them back breaks my heart.

* Bureaucracies can be sticklers. The Postal Service has refused to honor the insurance on some registered parcels they admit were stolen, because I couldn’t “prove” to their satisfaction the value of the customer orders I was shipping.

One Response to “Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor, and $465”

  1. Gregg Millett Says:

    Amazing! I agree with you Frank. Nicely written, as usual.

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