Immigrants help renew our countryIn his letter, "Stop...

the Forum

January 10, 1992

Immigrants help renew our country

In his letter, "Stop immigration" (Dec. 16), Thuryle V. McKewin argues that due to the current economic recession, we ought to stop admitting any more immigrants into the U.S. "for the time being."

First, I'd like to thank him for being in favor of immigration during good economic times. There are many, like Republican presidential candidates Pat Buchanan and David Duke, who want to close our borders during both good and bad times.

But I challenge his statement that we cannot "take in more immigrants when our own people are being laid off." Most unskilled immigrants take jobs that other people don't want. And skilled immigrants who compete with laid off American workers are at a disadvantage, since they lack domestic work experience, local references and language skills. Immigrants, skilled or otherwise, are hardly a threat to laid off American workers.

Also I question McKewin's remark that new immigrants "will surely end up on some kind of government assistance." He doesn't provide any data or even anecdotal evidence to support this opinion. All the available data point to the fact that immigrants are less likely than American-born citizens to become welfare recipients.

Contrary to the opinion of nativists, America benefits from its historic open door immigration policy. The boats, ships, and airplanes that brought us immigrants throughout our history didn't just bring us poor people who wanted to take our jobs. They brought people who were ambitious, full of hopes, strength and a desire to achieve the American Dream. They brought new kinds of food, new ways of thinking, and they renewed our country.

Abdul Rahman Abdi

Greenbelt

Money talks

Since Rae Miller Heneson (Forum, Jan. 3) asked to be corrected if she was wrong, I will oblige. Certainly there is sex discrimination in the work place, but her example is not one of them. The reason there are no unattractive, elderly, rotund women newscasters has little to do with discrimination, equal rights or the ability to read the news but everything to do with business, measured by ratings and their attendant advertising dollars. There is no accounting for taste, but that's the way it is.

Even the most biased of business owners defer to their wallets, and anyone - man or woman, fat or thin, attractive or ugly ` who can increase the owner's income will get the job whether it's anchoring the news or playing shortstop for the Orioles.

Dave Reich

Fallston

Gorby for president?

This is in response to Gerald Shargel's Dec. 26 letter in which he says he wants the Democrats to nominate Mikhail Gorbachev for president of the United States. Gee, Mr. Shargel, then he could solve all of our nation's problems just like he did in the Soviet Union.

Mr. Shargel should wake up and realize that our nation's problems are not caused by our president but by the House and Senate where one party has held a majority for years.

John Richard Burke

Nottingham

King's legacy

Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday is Jan. 15. Our state and thnation will be honoring him the entire month of January. It is only fitting and proper that we do this.

Beginning with his famous bus boycott in Montgomery, Ala., to the deplorable bombings of Birmingham, to his spectacular and majestic march on Washington in August 1963, Dr. King became the undisputed leader of the civil rights struggle in America. We honor Dr. King this month not only because he was black, but because he was a great American who awakened the spirit and conscience of all Americans.

ohn A. Micklos

Baltimore

Wrong on rights

In addition to the congressional leaders, President Bush and the judiciary marked the 200th anniversary of the ratification of the Bill of Rights with a pilgrimage to James Madison's home in central Virginia.

I wouldn't bet the rent money that either Bush or the judges (whom he and Ronald Reagan appointed) came away from the celebration with anything less than a renewed determination to further undermine or remove any teeth that might remain in the Bill of Rights.

Desser

Baltimore

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