The Instigator
EmyG
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Danielle
Con (against)
Winning
28 Points

Public Forum topic for September '09

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Danielle
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/27/2009 Category: Society
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,907 times Debate No: 9562
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (4)

 

EmyG

Pro

*Please disregard the 'my partner and I' stuff. This was my actual case. We were quarterfinalists, but remember: I also had my partner debating with me. This is just practice for me.

Resolved: United States policy on illegal immigration should focus on attrition through enforcement rather than amnesty.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies, a strategy of attrition through enforcement, which includes mandatory workplace verification and measures to curb misuse of social security numbers, could reduce the illegal population by as many as 1.5 million illegal immigrants each year. With our illegal population being 11.9 million in October 2008, and our U.S. population being over 300 million and growing, there has to be something done. This something is to focus on attrition through enforcement rather than amnesty.
There are several problems that illegal immigrants contribute to: Jobs, Crime, and Disease.
First, Jobs. There are approximately 7.7 million illegal aliens employed in U.S. jobs in 2008, according to numbersusa.com. With this many illegal immigrants working in the U.S., there is a higher unemployment rate, 9.7%, but more importantly, it lowers wages. A 1997 study by the American Academy of Sciences found that the cheap labor of illegal immigrants and poor immigrants caused a 44% decrease in wages among the poorest Americans from 1980 to 1994. With all the immigrants, there are more people willing to work. When there are more people willing to work, employers cut wages. Illegal immigrants who take low-skilled jobs reduce wages and take jobs from both citizens and legal immigrants. A study by Harvard economist George Borjas shows that cheap immigrant labor has reduced by 7.4 percent the wages of American workers performing low-skilled jobs. A report by the Center for Immigration Studies concludes that "immigration may reduce the wages of the average native in a low-skilled occupation by... $1,915 per year." One study estimates that illegal immigrants displace 730,000 American workers every year. Legal U.S. citizens should come first. Americans need these jobs: 17 million adult citizens do not have a high-school degree; 1.3 million are unemployed; and 6.8 million have given up looking for jobs. The percentage of 16- to 19-year-olds holding jobs in the United States is now at its lowest point since 1948. American workers in building, cleaning, and maintenance have an 11 percent unemployment rate, as do 13 percent of those in construction and 9 percent of those in food preparation.
Second, Crimes. According to the Center for Immigration Studies, illegal immigrants collectively represent a group that is a significant menace to the public. 80% have committed serious crimes in addition to immigration violations, and 40% have violent crime histories. Illegal immigrants killed Denver Police Officer Don Young and Los Angeles County Deputy David March. There was also a case of an illegal immigrant dragging his girlfriend to death behind his car. Based on a one-year in-depth study, a researcher estimates there are about 240,000 illegal immigrant sex offenders in the U.S. who have had an average of four victims each. According to Deborah Schurman-Kauflin of the Violent Crimes Institute in Atlanta, the study translates to 93 sex offenders and 12 serial sexual offenders coming across U.S. borders illegally per day. Rep Steve King also reports 8 American children are victims of sexual abuse by illegal aliens every day--a total of 2,920 annually. In 2005, Cornelio Rivera Zamites was arrested for the kidnapping, molestation and murder of four-year-old Esmerelda Nava. In 2005, there were 10.5 million illegal immigrants, according to the government, including about 264, 000 in jail and prison for non-immigration crimes. That's an incarceration rate of 2.5%.
Third, Diseases. Legal immigrants are required to have a medical screening to ensure that they do not bring any contagious diseases into the U.S. Illegal immigrants are not screened and many are carrying horrific diseases that are highly contagious. These diseases will infect citizens that come in contact with an infected illegal alien. This has already happened in restaurants, schools, and police forces. Two good examples of this would be Leprosy and Hepatitis A. In the 40 years prior to 2002, there were only 900 total cases of leprosy in the US. In the following three years there have been 9,000 cases, and most were illegal aliens. Dr. Terry Williams, who runs a Houston-based clinic serving leprosy patients across southern Texas, said that the bulk of the cases treated by his clinic were immigrants. Health reporter Bill Sardi noted:
"Recently an outbreak of hepatitis traced to Chi-Chi's Mexican restaurant, in Pennsylvania. The Hepatitis outbreak infected over 650 individuals, caused 9,000 Americans to undergo immune globulin shots, and killed 4 people. There were 13 restaurant workers who had Hepatitis. They were the likely source of the transmitted infection."
As you can see, illegal immigrants bring dangerous contagious diseases.
"Hospitals are closing across the country due to the burden of illegal immigration, college students find that summer jobs have dried up due to illegal immigration, and wages across the board are depressed by the overwhelming influx of cheap and illegal labor." -Elton Gallegly. It is because we agree with this statement, the reasons stated above, and the reasons my partner with later discuss, that my partner and I agree with the resolution which states Resolved: United States policy on illegal immigration should focus on attrition through enforcement rather than amnesty.
Danielle

Con

Attrition is defined as: A wearing down or weakening of resistance, especially as a result of continuous pressure or harassment. To engage in attrition warfare is to wear down your enemy to the "point of collapse." While proponents of such a harsh sounding policy say that they are merely advocating for employers to require legal citizen status, and push for local law enforcement to discourage settlement of illegal immigrants, the New York Times describes the more accurate reality of what the policy aims to do:

"Their one big idea is that harsh, unrelenting enforcement at the border, in the workplace and in homes and streets would dry up opportunities for illegal immigrants and eventually cause the human tide to flow backward. That would be true only if life for illegal immigrants in America could be made significantly more miserable than life in, say, rural Guatemala or the slums of Mexico City. That will take a lot of time and a lot of misery to pull that off in a country that has tolerated and profited from illegal labor for generations."

In other words, the purpose of attrition through enforcement would be to rally American citizens in support of anti-immigration, in order to make life in America nearly impossible for the citizens who have escaped to live here in search of a better life. I am opposed to this ideology for several reasons which I will detail in the following arguments.

1) All of our ancestors came to the United States in search of a better life, or for certain freedoms and values not granted in the origin of their birth. Immigrants are flocking to the U.S. now for that very same reason. The only difference is that our ancestors used violent force and other malicious attacks to drive the original inhabitants of North America out of their homes, while immigrants are merely attempting to work hard for their money and live in a more effective and safe capitalistic, somewhat democratic society. I fail to see why it should be fair that we make their lives Hell for wanting to seek the same opportunities of which our ancestors came, simply because we have expanded our government enabling us to do so.

2) Amnesty, as defined by its opponents, has come to mean getting forgiveness for free. But under the Senate's current compromise, the path for illegals is not anything close to easy. Under the compromise, the 12 million immigrants would face a 13-year process including $5,000 in fines per person, benchmarks for learning English, and an onerous "touchback" provision that calls for the head of each household to leave job and family behind and return to his or her home country for an indeterminate amount of time to queue up for the final green card. Nothing free about that, notes TIME magazine.

3) Many opponents of amnesty also say that immigrants should work hard to enter this country legally if they wish to be accepted. However what they don't tell you is that many eligible individuals have been waiting patiently for citizenship for as much as 28 years. Our current faulty system obviously needs reform, and that reform would be addressed under the new proposed amnesty bill which I have described above. Without it, there is absolutely no incentive for immigrants to enter this country legally or even try. A further argument on this issue is that we simply cannot stop immigrants from entering this country and working, which is obvious by the sheer amount of people who enter and enter our workforce each day. We already have a Border Patrol; obviously they're failing (and many are corrupt).

4) With that in mind, I'd like Pro to realize that there already ARE laws about employers requiring their employees to verify their citizenship. There are also laws that require employers to have all of their employees on legitimate, legal pay rolls. That simply just does not happen. People break the law all the time. Consider the amount of jobs that work "off the books" -- I myself have worked several, and I'm not even an immigrant! The point here is that it would be nearly impossible to enforce complete compliance by employers. It's ultimately THEIR fault that immigrants work. Creating federal agencies aimed at this goal would just be another expensive, ineffective feat (like the DEA) or possibly even an illegal agency (like the IRS) and include an expansion of bureaucracy and cost. Additionally, many amnesty opponents often utilize the work of illegal immigrants to their economic advantage every single day... as do most Americans, who often benefit financially from their work and existence in this country as well.

5) Much of the anti-amnesty talk is about racism and xenophobia. For instance, FOX commentator Bill O'Reilly warns that amnesty would drastically alter a country that is already 1/3 minority. In other words, if you're not white, you're not welcome. This is an incredibly bigoted argument. Additionally, Republican Congressman Tom Tancredo vehemently opposed amnesty on the grounds that Mexicans speak Spanish, and a bilingual country would be detrimental to the United States. This is the biggest bunch of crap that I have ever heard. In fact, I think that Americans are HINDERED at our ability to only speak one language; many Europeans can speak several which works to their advantage both personally and in business. Think about it: The ability to speak more than one language often gets you AHEAD and is considered favorable on college applications, resumes, etc. Additionally, obviously Mexicans understand that they'd have to learn English in order to get ahead in this country. Let's be realistic.

6) In terms of wages and economics, journalist Nathan Thornburgh describes it best: For all the stresses of immigration, we are the only industrialized nation with a population that is growing fast enough and skews young enough to provide the kind of workforce that a dynamic economy needs. The illegals are part of the reason for that, and amnesty ensures that competitive advantage.

7) The plethora of immigrants who live here are already utilizing tax payer dollars in terms of ER medical attention, police protection (sort of) and other benefits such as the building of roads, etc. It would be in our economic interest to impose the same tax burdens on them as everyone else. It's also the most fair thing to do. Right now they're getting a free ride, and there's no way to stop it except to hold them accountable and give them the privileges AND responsibilities of citizenship.

8) Law enforcement is concentrating more on who's living here illegally in certain areas than on trying to fight real, dangerous crime (such as gang activity, violence, etc.). There are more important things that the law should have to worry about than immigration, especially at the local level. Pro said the fact that many immigrants have been convicted of crimes or have hepatitis C should be enough to kick them out of this country. She forgot to note the fact that this could possibly be because they lived in poverty, in bad neighborhoods, no medical care, etc. Moreover, suppose the majority of people who had committed crimes had brown eyes. Should we punish everyone with brown eyes? No, this is something that obviously has to be handled on a case by case basis. To punish the whole group would be entirely unfair.

CONCLUSION: The reality is that immigrants are here to stay. The deportation of the millions of illegal immigrants is simply unfeasible. It is ridiculously expensive and obviously not cost efficient in terms of what we gain economically from immigrants vs. the cost of deportation, which is estimated at billions of dollars. Because this is therefore not an option, and the acts of attrition are not only morally questionable but also unenforceable, the resolution simply does not stand. We should focus on giving these people opportunities to succeed and BENEFIT our country rather than worry about the futile and unrealistic expectation of getting rid of them.
Debate Round No. 1
EmyG

Pro

"The only difference is that our ancestors used violent force and other malicious attacks to drive the original inhabitants of North America out of their homes, while immigrants are merely attempting to work hard for their money and live in a more effective and safe capitalistic, somewhat democratic society."
--Does this mean the immigrants now are not committing crimes? I don't understand this statement.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies, illegal immigrants collectively represent a group that is a significant menace to the public. 80% have committed serious crimes in addition to immigration violations, and 40% have violent crime histories. Illegal immigrants killed Denver Police Officer Don Young and Los Angeles County Deputy David March. There was also a case of an illegal immigrant dragging his girlfriend to death behind his car. Based on a one-year in-depth study, a researcher estimates there are about 240,000 illegal immigrant sex offenders in the U.S. who have had an average of four victims each. According to Deborah Schurman-Kauflin of the Violent Crimes Institute in Atlanta, the study translates to 93 sex offenders and 12 serial sexual offenders coming across U.S. borders illegally per day. Rep Steve King also reports 8 American children are victims of sexual abuse by illegal aliens every day--a total of 2,920 annually. In 2005, Cornelio Rivera Zamites was arrested for the kidnapping, molestation and murder of four-year-old Esmerelda Nava. In 2005, there were 10.5 million illegal immigrants, according to the government, including about 264, 000 in jail and prison for non-immigration crimes. That's an incarceration rate of 2.5%.

"We already have a Border Patrol; obviously they're failing (and many are corrupt)."
--With attrition through enforcement, we would be strengthening our Border Control. Therefore, this doesn't stand.

"Amnesty, as defined by its opponents, has come to mean getting forgiveness for free. But under the Senate's current compromise, the path for illegals is not anything close to easy. Under the compromise, the 12 million immigrants would face a 13-year process including $5,000 in fines per person, benchmarks for learning English, and an onerous "touchback" provision that calls for the head of each household to leave job and family behind and return to his or her home country for an indeterminate amount of time to queue up for the final green card. Nothing free about that, notes TIME magazine."
--This is with amnesty? I'd like to point out that amnesty has failed seven times.

"It's ultimately THEIR fault that immigrants work."
--How so?

As far as diseases go, if the immigrants came over legally, there would be less. Therfore, "kicking them out of the country" would mean they could come back legally, lowering the rate of disease.
Danielle

Con

1) Pro's first rebuttal regarding our ancestors immigrating to this country and immigrants today are that the immigrants today are committing crimes once they get here. This is an entirely frustrating argument since I have already addressed this in my previous round. You'll note that I have pointed out several problems with this argument including:

(a) Pro conveniently forgot to report that these crimes were committed by highly impoverished individuals from poor neighborhoods; a group that always tends to commit the most crimes regardless of their origins.

(b) Because these people cannot gain citizenship, they often resort to crime as what they conceive to be a final resort.

(c) You cannot punish an entire group for the crimes of certain people! I provided an analogy in R1 that Pro has ignored, which questioned - If 80% of those who committed crimes have brown eyes, should all people with brown eyes be punished? Perhaps a more realistic example is noting that most violent crime (by a drastic majority) is committed by men instead of women. Does that mean that we should punish all men? Or how about the statistic that 1 out of every 3 black men at some point goes through some phase of the correctional system? Should we punish all black men? [1]

(d) Immigrants (as in our ancestors) committed crimes as well. In fact, the original settlers in the United States were technically immigrants who all committed a plethora of crimes.

(e) Finally on this point, I'd like for Pro to please provide sources for her cited information :)

2) You'll note that Pro has completely ignored my 2nd argument from the last round, which detailed what amnesty actually entails. My point was that amnesty was not something "free" or easy. Pro has not responded as to why there is not a fair trade off between amnesty and citizenship, or why she has any more right to be a citizen than an immigrant despite the conditions imposed upon them in order to gain citizenship. Instead, she has asked, "This is amnesty?" Yes, that is amnesty. Look it up. Additionally, her next point was that amnesty has failed seven times. First of all, I would once again like to please request cited information and sources. Second of all, since the conditions of amnesty have been reformed, this point has no weight since Pro has not and cannot prove that the new conditions of amnesty would not work, be mutually beneficial, or even preferable over her option of attrition through enforcement.

3) Again, Pro has ignored my 3rd argument during which I detailed that without amnesty, there is no incentive for illegal immigrants to try and enter this country legally. Pro merely selected to respond to my point that there is already a border control which is inefficient, ineffective and corrupt. Pro claims that through her attrition policy, border patrol would be strengthened, therefore my point is irrelevant. However, the problem with this claim is that Pro is very unspecific about which border she is referring to. Indeed there are immigrants who enter this country illegally from more countries than just Mexico. As such, successful attrition through enforcement would actually necessitate the securing of ALL of the United States borders, which I posit is unfeasible given the amount of personnel that you would need, the interference with NAFTA that this would cause, the fact that this does not deal with corrupt officials, and quite simply the cost of this futile endeavor.

4) Next Pro questions "How so" to my argument that it is the fault of EMPLOYERS that many immigrants continue to work in this country illegally. I'm not quite sure how she missed that giant chunk of a paragraph explaining exactly what I meant. As I have already said, there are already laws that require employers to have all of their employees on legitimate, legal pay rolls. If you're going to complain that immigrants are taking citizen's jobs, then you have to blame the people whose responsibility it is to ensure that all of their employees are legal citizens. The reality is that employers choose to hire immigrants because they will work for cheaper wages. However, the employer is actually the one breaking the law here in giving a job to an immigrant who does not pay income tax (and as such, the employer is committing tax fraud as well).

5) My 5th point was about the attrition policy being rooted in racism and xenophobia. You'll note that my opponent did not even make one minor attempt to try and counter this argument.

6) Similarly, Pro has completely ignored my 6th point which noted that the U.S. can ultimately BENEFIT from incorporating immigrants into our workforce if we revamped the economy and expected these immigrants to actually start paying taxes. A population as large as the U.S.'s -- which is largely in part thanks to immigrants -- could actually benefit from such a big market and workforce if we can somehow stimulate new growth and jobs.

7) Once again, Pro has ignored my 7th point which explained how immigrants are already exploiting the system. Providing them with amnesty and holding them accountable for utilizing our tax dollars - and expecting them to do the same - would actually help our economy and be a more fair way of trading off goods and services through taxes.

8) Nor surprisingly, Pro has only responded to part of my final point. I stated that law enforcement is concentrating more on who's living here illegally in certain areas than on trying to fight real, dangerous crime (such as gang activity, violence, etc.). She writes that if immigrants came over here legally instead of illegally, that there would be less disease here. First of all, once again, please cite this source of information or at least explain it. Second, the way I see it, the diseases my opponent has described affect only the individuals who carry it or those they have unprotected sexual relations with. Therefore this argument is irrelevant. Also, let's note the flawed logic in Pro's idea that by kicking the immigrants out of the country, they will therefore enter legally (wishful thinking) which would lower the rate of disease. This does not make any sense. If I have a disease and you deport me, and then I come back, I will still have the disease. Whether I enter the country legally or not would have no bearing on whether or not I carry the disease. Therefore, again, this point is negated.

CONCLUSION: Pro has failed to respond to numerous arguments that I have made throughout this debate thus far. She has also not provided any new substantial contentions, or even effectively argued the ones she has already made. Instead, she ignored various aspects of my round which provided key arguments to my firm negation of the resolution. Back to Pro, for now.

Sources:
[1] http://www.emich.edu...
Debate Round No. 2
EmyG

Pro

EmyG forfeited this round.
Danielle

Con

I'd like to begin by final round by thanking my opponent for the opportunity to debate this very controversial topic. I'm sorry that she forfeited the final round of the debate, as I was looking forward to her actually responding to the various (almost all) arguments of mine that she did not address or provide any type of adequate rebuttal too. Perhaps we can debate this topic again in the future. For now, I'd like to extend all of my arguments seeing as how I've already made a bunch that have thus far been ignored. I believe the evidence shows that I have provided a great deal of better contentions than my opponent, and thus I encourage a vote for the Con. Thank you. -- L
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by BrandonClark 7 years ago
BrandonClark
Not exactly 7 point material, seems kind of suspicious...

then again, theLwerd kicked äss...
Posted by philosphical 7 years ago
philosphical
1. an unexcused forfeit
2. uncovered points of both pro and con past the first round.

pro isn't looking good on this debate.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by philosphical 7 years ago
philosphical
EmyGDanielleTied
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Vote Placed by Vi_Veri 7 years ago
Vi_Veri
EmyGDanielleTied
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Vote Placed by wonderwoman 7 years ago
wonderwoman
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Vote Placed by Danielle 7 years ago
Danielle
EmyGDanielleTied
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