SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Opinion

February 10, 2014

Letter: Anderson wrong on immigrants

To the editor:

Barbara Anderson’s most recent column on immigration (”Inviting everyone to America,” Feb. 6) is so riddled with fallacies that it is hard to know where to begin.

The Cato Institute recently released two important reports on the effects of immigration. The first finds that the number of immigrants has no effect on state budgets for education and social assistance. The second finds the participation rate for public benefits is lower among immigrants than it is among native-born Americans. This is not simply because immigrants are ineligible. SNAP and TANF participation is also lower among naturalized citizens than native-born citizens. A quick glance at Bureau of Labor statistics would have informed her that labor force participation rate is higher among immigrants than native-born Americans.

Anderson’s worries about crime are completely unfounded, as well. Studies show that violent crime rates are lower in predominantly immigrant neighborhoods than in native-born neighborhoods.

If Anderson is truly concerned with rapid population growth, then perhaps she should instead advocate a “one child” policy similar to what the Chinese government has in place. Hearing Anderson speak about Americans having “illegal children” might convince me that she is motivated by something other than prejudice. The truth is that immigrants are a net benefit to the U.S. economy and society, regardless of whether some bureaucrat signed off on their papers. To deny them the same opportunities that my great grandparents had before the onset of draconian immigration restrictions is unjust and contrary to America values.

Josh McCabe

Beverly

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