The Instigator
YYW
Pro (for)
Losing
2 Points
The Contender
thett3
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

The United States should adopt a more relaxed immigration policy with Mexico.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
thett3
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/23/2011 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 6,001 times Debate No: 17202
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (2)

 

YYW

Pro

First round will be for acceptance. I thank you. You thank me. Everybody's a happy family.

Round 2 will be for opening arguments. I say a whole lot of stuff to support one side. You say a whole lot of stuff to support the side I'm not supporting. Debate commences.

Round 3 will be for refutation and case reconstruction. I tell you what is wrong with your case. You tell me what is wrong with my case. We debate. Clash happens (ideally).

Round 4 will be for closing arguments.

Some ground rules:

1) I am more a rhetoric guy than a source guy. Your sources don't impress me. Your thoughts do. Sources are a means to an end in argument, not the end themselves. Use them as such.
2) If you use evidence, don't use it as a contention, point, sub-point, etc. Use it to support what you like.
3) This is going to be more a philosophical debate rather than an empirical one. I just like that style more; and it's a great way to avoid a source-war.
thett3

Con

I accept. Good luck Pro and thank you for starting this debate!
Debate Round No. 1
YYW

Pro

There is a lot of vitriolic political chest-beating with regard to the issue of immigration. As a society however, the cause of pragmatism must be heard from. Mexicans will continue to enter this country legally and illegally as long as the United States is a more desirable place to be than Mexico. What do we gain by turning them away? Nothing. What do we loose by keeping them out? The billions of dollars spent keeping them out.

A. Illegal immigration is good for the economy.

Politicians like to talk about how harmful illegal immigration is to the economy. Let's look at immigration as a third party. Most illegal immigrants are untrained people who are only after farm jobs or other types of unskilled labor. Make no mistake, they are looking for work (that's why they came here). When there is an influx of supply without an increase in demand the cost of labor will adjust accordingly; wages will fall because there are more people willing and qualified to do a job than their are jobs. The only type of jobs, then, that are taken are minimum wage jobs or less (like under the table jobs that don't count as jobs anyway) because illegals simply don't have the skills to take higher paying jobs.

If anything, illegal immigration is a good thing in this country because it makes the cost of production decrease. If a contractor can build a quality house with illegals whom he pays five dollars an hour instead of union-members who he has to pay thirty dollars an hour, the cost of the house is going to be dramatically less because his cost of production has decreased remarkably.

B. Current immigration labor policy is harmful.

When politicians pass laws that punish employers who hire illegal immigrants not only do they harm the consumer by increasing the cost of production but they harm the economy as a whole by lowering demand for goods. The cheaper a good is, the more people will buy it (where quality remains unchanged). Now, the even funnier thing is that when illegals get here, they will find a way to make money (wether it is working or stealing/drug dealing/etc.). If someone fresh off the boat with no skills is rejected at the local burger joint because the fast food restaurant is afraid of paying a 250,000 USD fine for employing him then the illegal is left out of a job.

Well, he's not going back to Mexico (unless he is captured and deported -which is highly unlikely unless he gets arrested for criminal activity) so he resorts to the only way he can make money: criminal enterprise. Since he couldn't find legitimate work he will find illegitimate work, and that he finds at societies expense. If he had have been given a job, he would have no need to resort to crime but because no one would employ him, well, we're all out of luck. Anti-immigration labor policies hurt consumers and contribute to higher crime rates, but they don't curtail illegal immigration.

C. There is no good alternative.

The argument I am making here isn't necessarily that Mexico has a lot to offer the United States, because as a country Mexico really doesn't. The labor that Mexican immigrants could provide the United States could be invaluable, and would be more beneficial to the Unites States than is the expense we undertake to keep Mexican immigrants out. The question we have to ask ourselves is this, even if we want to keep them out -how do we do it? Walls are expensive and can be climbed over or dug under, or gone around. They are expensive to patrol and maintain. Border security is even more expensive and does nothing to help the economy -it only consumes resources that could be used to fund more important things like education or our efforts to spread the blessings of liberty and democracy abroad. Embracing illegal immigrants is a mutually beneficial exercise, whereas keeping them out is to fight a loosing battle.
thett3

Con

First I will refute my Opponents arguments, and then I will post my own.

Relaxed: freed from or lacking in precision or stringency (merriam-webster)

A.

My Opponent states that Illegal Immigration is good for the economy. While this certainly is debatable, I feel that this point is irrelevant in this debate because the resolution states "The United States should adopt a more relaxed immigration policy with Mexico." meaning that the U.S. should reduce its' restrictions on allowing people to legally immigrate, thus creating more legal immigrants. Therefore this point actually supports the Con side, because if the U.S. was to allow these illegal immigrants to become citizens they would:
1) have to be paid at least minimum wage, which is currently $7.25 per hour, significantly more than the $5.00 per hour my opponent cites in his case.

2) if they meet the qualifications, they could qualify for medicaid benefits which cost, on average, $6,860 yearly per beneficiary.[1]

3) if these new immigrants have children and meet the qualifications they will recieve for welfare.

4) if these new immigrants lose their jobs they could qualify for unemployment benefits.

Therefore, this point actually supports my side because the status quo (keeping these people as illegal immigrants) is less costly than relaxing our policy and making citizens out of these people.

B.

"When politicians pass laws that punish employers who hire illegal immigrants not only do they harm the consumer by increasing the cost of production but they harm the economy as a whole by lowering demand for goods." - Non-topical. You are saying that illegal immigrants help the economy, as I've already stated, relaxing our immigration policy will make more of these illegals citzens and thus this situation you point out ceases to exist. Instead, since they are all citizens, the cost of production still increases thus this point also supports my side.

"Now, the even funnier thing is that when illegals get here, they will find a way to make money (wether it is working or stealing/drug dealing/etc.)." The same could be said about a Legal Immigrant as well, or a natrual born citizen. Relaxing our policy does not solve this.

"Anti-immigration labor policies hurt consumers and contribute to higher crime rates, but they don't curtail illegal immigration." -Irrelavent, a relaxed immigration policy would create more legal citizens so the implications behind these laws would largely dissappear.

C.

"The labor that Mexican immigrants could provide the United States could be invaluable" -No justification for this claim. Arguably illegal immigration has a positive impact on the United States, but relaxing the immigration policy will make these benefits go away as I've previously stated.

"Border security is even more expensive and does nothing to help the economy -it only consumes resources that could be used to fund more important things like education or our efforts to spread the blessings of liberty and democracy abroad" - Yes border security is expensive, however the status quo does very much to help the economy as I've already explained.


=Case=

C1. Relaxing the policy only for Mexico is discriminatory.

There is not much to be said here other than to single out Mexicans alone to have greater opprutunities for Citizenship is wrong to the Immigrants from other countries. I wonder what my Opponent would say if I was to claim that immigrants from European countries should be given priority, and have a more relaxed policy than the rest of the world. Singling out Mexico for this is no different. The Heritage Foundation sums it up quite nicely in their article "Reforming Immigration"[2] "How, for instance, could we justify amnesty for illegal Mexican immigrants who have lived here for a number of years, no matter how decent and hardworking most of them undoubtedly are, when millions are on waiting lists for years or decades to join their families from other parts of the world?" My Opponent must show why Mexico alone deserves to have the policy relaxed in its favor.

C2. Legal Immigration hurts the natrual-born lower class more than Illegal Immigration does.

My Opponent has already acknowledged in his case that Mexican immigrants, illegal or otherwise, are generally willing to work for less than Natrual-born citizens. He has also acknowledged that they generally have less skills than the average citizen as well. (refer to his point A) This hurts the lower class because they lose their unskilled labor jobs to the immigrants, illegal or otherwise. However Illegal Immigrants get deported at the rate of 350,000 per year[3]. This, combined with the incentives for businesses to hire citizens helps to free up some of these jobs to be filled by our lower class. American jobs ought to go to American workers. Legal Immigrants cannot be deported, and there are no disincentives to hiring them, and as such our natrual-born lower class suffers even more poverty than it is already in.

Thank you. Sources in comments
Debate Round No. 2
YYW

Pro

First I will reply to my Opponents refutations, and then I will deconstruct his case. "Relaxed" for the purposes of this debate simply means to adopt a policy of lesser intensity.

RA1) The economic benefits of a relaxed immigration policy are the cause for adopting a relaxed policy. The resolution states that the United States "should" adopt a more relaxed immigration policy with Mexico. Actors only "should" act when there is cause to do so; the economic benefits here are that cause. As such, economic benefits are relevant. Because my opponent has sidestepped this contention by falsely claiming irrelevancy, he has lost it.

RA2) The resolution does not address implementation, worker benefits, citizenship status, etc. nor does it speak anything to the effect of dictating working benefits of immigrants legal or otherwise. Adopting a more relaxed immigration policy does not require the US to grant citizenship to all who wish to come to the US, only lessening the intensity which we keep people out of our country -which is all I am obliged to advocate for. My opponent wishes to define specifically what a "relaxed immigration policy" is, beyond the scope of the resolution. The resolution simply calls for a debate of wether we should relax our immigration policy or not -not how we would implement such a relaxation.

RB) I contend that relaxed immigration policies benefits the economy, and therefore we should relax our immigration policy with mexico. The economical benefit is cause for the proscribed action, and therefore relevant to the discussion. To claim that the cost of production will remain the same is to assume that immigrants will be paid the same as citizens and be given the same rights as citizens, which I never advocated for. Again, my opponent wishes to engage in a discussion of how to implement a relaxation of immigration policies rather engage in the debate required by the resolution, and that is to discuss the merits of the action -not the means of implementation.

RC) My opponent agrees that illegal immigration has a positive impact on the US, and argues that relaxing the immigration policy with Mexico will preclude those benefits. He assumes, though, that all immigrants would be granted citizenship and afforded full rights of US citizens -which neither I nor the resolution in any way suggest. I do not suggest that we grant every Mexican citizen who wishes to find work in the US citizenship, as my opponent would imply -merely that not obstructing immigration to the extent that we have would yield tangible benefits described above.

My opponent's case:

RC1) My opponent claims that to only relax US immigration policy towards Mexico is discriminatory. Even assuming that doing so is discriminatory, he did not demonstrate cause for equal treatment among all nations of the world. Unless there is a reason to treat immigrants from Europe or otherwise with the same level of deference as Mexican immigrants there is no cause to do so. My opponent has demonstrated no such cause. There is, however cause to relax or policy with Mexico. Firstly, we build border fences to keep Mexican immigrants out. Did we build a fence spanning the length of our atlantic coastline to keep europeans out? No. If anything, simply treating mexican immigrants the same way as other immigrants would be a good start -and a relaxation of current policy.

RC2) My opponent claims that legal immigration hurts natural born lower-class citizens more than illegal immigration because legal immigrants take unskilled labor jobs. However, my opponent firstly assumes that there is a fixed number of jobs to be had and secondly that natural-born citizens are somehow entitled to those jobs -two assumptions I fundamentally disagree with. As the labor force becomes more competitive the economy grows and goods become cheaper as wages fall. Because the economy will grow, there will be more jobs available. Why natural born citizens are entitled to work more than immigrants I can not fathom. I have always believed that all people are created equally, regardless of nationality. As such, they equally deserve the opportunity to compete in the open market for work.
thett3

Con

=Objections=

1. Since the resolution states "immigration policy" not our policy towards illegal aliens, we must presume that this resolution is addressing creating a policy allowing for more legal immigrants, thus the benefits provided by illegal immigration are irrelevant for this round.

2. My Opponent is arguing for a relaxed policy towards illegal immigrants. If that is what he wished to debate, he should have specified it in the resolution or his opening round.

=Rebuttal=

Despite the fact that my Opponent and I are in disagreement about the wording of the resolved, I will now answer his contentions as if he was correct about the wording. I cannot emphasize enough that this is NOT a concession to the wording of the resolution.

A.

"The economic benefits of a relaxed immigration policy are the cause for adopting a relaxed policy" -I do not know exactly how much Illegal Immigrants help the economy but the amount that they harm it certainly is known. Indeed they cost tax payers $113 billion annually[1]. Furthermore, there is no reason to believe that the jobs done by Illegals cannot be done by natural born citizens or legal immigrants. I concur that illegals will work for less money, however this decreased cost of production is not enough to offset the $113 billion costs.


"Adopting a more relaxed immigration policy does not require the US to grant citizenship to all who wish to come to the US, only lessening the intensity which we keep people out of our country" -Yes, lessening the intensity of the restrictions for legal immigration, meaning citizenship or guest workers.

"My opponent wishes to define specifically what a "relaxed immigration policy" is, beyond the scope of the resolution." -if you could please elaborate on this, I do not understand your meaning of how defining the wording of the resolution is irrelevant.

"The resolution simply calls for a debate of wether we should relax our immigration policy or not -not how we would implement such a relaxation." - I disagree with this, like you've stated we have to look at the cause for action, so the implications behind relaxing the immigration policy are very important to this debate.

B.

"Again, my opponent wishes to engage in a discussion of how to implement a relaxation of immigration policies rather engage in the debate required by the resolution, and that is to discuss the merits of the action -not the means of implementation." - I think you misunderstand me. My objections about how relaxing the policy would be harmful are discussing the merits of the action.

C.

"My opponent agrees that illegal immigration has a positive impact on the US" -actually I never agreed to this, in fact if you look at my response to his point A I state "My Opponent states that Illegal Immigration is good for the economy. While this certainly is debatable, I feel that this point is irrelevant in this debate", that is not a concession.

"He assumes, though, that all immigrants would be granted citizenship and afforded full rights of US citizens" -surely not ALL, but many more. A less stringent policy would allow for more illegals to be granted citizenship.

"I do not suggest that we grant every Mexican citizen who wishes to find work in the US citizenship, as my opponent would imply" -my apologies for implying that, it was not intended.

=Reconstruction=

C1."Even assuming that doing so is discriminatory, he did not demonstrate cause for equal treatment among all nations of the world."- interesting, considering how in your attack on my second contention you state "I have always believed that all people are created equally, regardless of nationality." I agree, all people are equal which is exactly why relaxing the policy towards Mexico alone is discrimination.


"Unless there is a reason to treat immigrants from Europe or otherwise with the same level of deference as Mexican immigrants there is no cause to do so." - there IS reason to treat them the same, because they're all people and should be treated the same! You yourself even stated this!

"Did we build a fence spanning the length of our atlantic coastline to keep europeans out?" -No need, we have the Ocean as a border. Not to mention the fact that Europeans are far less likely to illegally immigrate due to their countries being more developed than Mexico.

"simply treating mexican immigrants the same way as other immigrants would be a good start -and a relaxation of current policy." -my opponent is claiming that Mexican immigrants are treated more poorly than the rest, he must prove this claim.

C2.

"my opponent firstly assumes that there is a fixed number of jobs to be had" -actually no it is not fixed, jobs are currently decreasing, particularly blue-collar low skill jobs.[2]

"Why natural born citizens are entitled to work more than immigrants I can not fathom."- because they had the job to begin with. How would you feel if you got fired because someone was willing to work for less than you were?

Please negate. Sources in comments.







Debate Round No. 3
YYW

Pro

Response to my opponent's objections:

1. Immigration policy does not discriminate on legal or illegal aliens. It encompasses both categories.

2. We are debating the following: "The United States should adopt a more relaxed immigration policy with Mexico." Mexican immigrants come both legally and illegally; as such the resolution permits a discussion of both.

Rebuttal

A.

The point of relaxing or immigration policy is to use the $113 billion dollars that illegal immigrants currently cost tax payers for better purposes. What those purposes are, I cannot say -but it seems absurd to waste money keeping people out when you can benefit from allowing them in. At present, taxpayers are unnecessarily overburdened with the task of keeping out a viable labor source at the expense of the opportunity cost of the prospective economic growth a relaxed immigration policy would yield in addition to the tax dollars we waste annually in pursuit of securing our borders.

"Yes, lessening the intensity of the restrictions for legal immigration, meaning citizenship or guest workers." -We are not talking about citizenship, or guest workers any more than we are stipulating employment policies for immigrants of any variety. This is only a debate over wether we should lessen the intensity of our current immigration regulations. The purpose of this debate isn't to determine how we would implement a "relaxation" of our immigration policy, only wether we should or should not entertain the possibility. Once we decide wether our immigration policy merits reform or not we can then move to a discussion of what, specifically, that reform may be.

The prospective implications of relaxing our immigration policy serve as cause to reform; the policy itself is the means to the end we intend to effectuate. At present, we only discuss wether we should relax our immigration policy -not how we would do it.

B.

If the purpose of my opponent's refutation is to demonstrate how relaxing our current immigration policy would be harmful on a conceptual level, I encourage him to more clearly articulate his points in pursuit of that end and stray from a discussion of the implementation of the policy as stipulated by the resolution.

C.

Immigration has a positive impact on the US economy. My opponent has offered no substantive evidence to the contrary. Citizenship is not at issue because a relaxed immigration policy would only allow workers to enter the United States, not necessarily obtain citizenship.

C1.

The point that I was making with regard to Mexican immigration is that we already unduly discriminate against mexican immigrants more than we do immigrants from any other country. In consideration of this claim, I would ask my opponent to turn on the news and listen to any news caster or politician describe Mexican immigration. They all oppose it vehemently, championing the cause of border security with no purpose other than to pander for votes from a non-minority electorate. That we built a fence and have border patrol officers guard the length of the US-Mexican border is proof enough that we treat mexican immigrants differently. (We don't afford the same level of intensity to the canadian border, for sure). The Accordingly, to treat them just as we would immigrants from any other area of the world would be a good start because all people are created equally -regardless of nationality.

C2.

Blue collar jobs are currently decreasing because the cost of labor is dictated by a minimum wage. Workers who wouldn't necessarily be bound by such regulations (or ought not to be) could revamp our manufacturing base (which this country desperately needs).

As to any sort of entitlement of natural born citizens to jobs because they "had them to begin with" I would ask my opponent to consider what happens when companies outsource their manufacturing plants. Where the cost of production is too high to remain competitive in an open market, companies go elsewhere to cut costs -and then who looses? The entire town. When the manufacturer leaves town a primary source of tax revenue is eliminated, people loose all jobs, and no one benefits. I would rather loose my job to go to someone who was willing to work for less than me than loose the company to outsourcing. Besides, wages ought to be set by market value anyway -not by government regulation.
thett3

Con

=The context of the words in the resolution=
My Opponent contends that a relaxed immigration policy does not include providing more citizenship. This is false, because obtaining legal citizenship is a fundamental part of the current U.S. immigration policy. So arguments based on the financial negatives created when we create more impoverished citizens are valid.

=Observation=

My Opponent has not defined what exactly a relaxed immigration policy means, he has made vague refernces as to weakening our efforts to be rid of Illegal Immigrants, however he has never specifically explained WHAT a relaxed immigration policy means. I contended that it would create more legal immigrants, and my Opponent did not have a counter-definition, therefore in this round a "relaxed immigration policy" means that the Government would reduce the restrictions to qualify for citizenship, thus creating more legal immigrants. It is not about only Illegal Immigrants.

=Rebuttal=

A.
"The point of relaxing or immigration policy is to use the $113 billion dollars that illegal immigrants currently cost tax payers for better purposes." -my Opponent should've read my source before he made this claim. The costs illegal immigrants brought to the economy were not from our efforts to fight them, they were the costs of illegals using public institutions such as education, food stamps, criminal justice ect.


"At present, taxpayers are unnecessarily overburdened with the task of keeping out a viable labor source at the expense of the opportunity cost of the prospective economic growth a relaxed immigration policy would yield" -my Opponent has not shown how much Immigrants help the economy. I have shown their costs. He has not given any evidence for their financial benefits, and even if he did, making illegals into citizens would reduce these benefits. I know my Opponent wanted a philisophical debate, not a source war, and I tried to give him one but there are some things (such as this) that you simply must provide evidence for in order for it to be a valid argument.

"We are not talking about citizenship, or guest workers" -if we truly weren't, than you should've clarified more as to what a "more relaxed immigration policy" actually means. Regardless, I've still shown the negative effects from illegal immigrants.

B. The Resolved states "should". As the negative, it is my job to show why the United States should NOT do the action called for in the resolution. Therefore my arguments about how this policy could be harmful ARE valid because they must be taken into consideration when deciding to relax the policy or not.

C. "Immigration has a positive impact on the US economy. My opponent has offered no substantive evidence to the contrary." -actually, in my rebuttal for your point A, and my C2, I provided evidence for how immigration can harm the economy. Furthermore, as the instigator it is your burden of proof to show how it helps which you have not done.

"Citizenship is not at issue because a relaxed immigration policy would only allow workers to enter the United States, not necessarily obtain citizenship." - if a relaxed immigration policy meant only allowing workers to enter the U.S. you should have specified that earlier in the debate.

=Reconstruction=

C1. "I would ask my opponent to turn on the news and listen to any news caster or politician describe Mexican immigration. They all oppose it vehemently, championing the cause of border security"-first of all, they are talking about illegal immigration in general, the only reason Mexico gets more attention is because the largest amount of Illegals come from Mexico. Furthermore, even if the news casters did discriminate, my Opponent has not shown how in the eyes of the law, and the current immigration policy, Meicans are discriminated against. Therefore this is invalid.

"We don't afford the same level of intensity to the canadian border, for sure" -there is no need for such close scrutiny at the Candian border. The numbers speak for themselves, there are an estimated 65,000-75,000 illegal Candian immigrants in the U.S.[1], as Opposed to 6.5 million illegal Mexican Immigrants.[2]

C2. "Where the cost of production is too high to remain competitive in an open market, companies go elsewhere to cut costs -and then who looses? The entire town."-this is an excellent point, and I'm glad my Opponent brought it up. It doesn't apply for these reasons. 1. Legal citizens (which would increase with relaxed policy) are required minimum wage, so the price to produce here would still be higher. 2. When the immigrants take these jobs, the citizens who were already working these jobs suffer just as much as if the job were outsourced 3. the costs brought by illegal immigrants ($113 billion) offset these gains, presuming they exist and 4. many of the jobs taken from citizens by illegals cannot be outsourced. For example, farming jobs, or mining, or oil drilling.

Thank you to my Opponent, and vote Con!



Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by thett3 5 years ago
thett3
1. http://www.fairus.org...

2. http://en.wikipedia.org...

I didn't have space to say it in my speech, but you made a great response!
Posted by thett3 5 years ago
thett3
1. http://www.empirecenter.org...
2. http://www.heritage.org...
3. http://www.foxnews.com...
good luck man, I'm looking forward to this debate :)
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 5 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
YYWthett3Tied
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Total points awarded:23 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro makes a very strong argument, however the resolution is not well enough defined to carry the BoP. It appears that the argument should be that the law should simply be not enforced and that no action should be taken to deport or enforce citizen status. If this was the case then it should have been argued as a much wider and open resolution is simply likely to be negated by the voters as the net is simply too wide. 3:2 Con.
Vote Placed by BillBonJovi 5 years ago
BillBonJovi
YYWthett3Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: I simply think Con made the more convincing arguments