Americans appreciate immigrants, just not those who came here illegally

July 01, 2011

Dan Rodricks' recent column ("Immigrants: We detest them — and need them," June 30) unjustly slams legal immigrants and American citizens. By his column comments, it appears Mr. Rodricks does not understand there are drastic differences between Americans' attitude about legal as opposed to illegal immigration.

American citizens appreciate the hard work that legal immigrants do in our country in all occupations especially those in the agricultural industry. What is not appreciated are citizens from other countries who illegally cross our borders (many with drugs tied to their back) and then take advantage of our health care systems, make us educate their children, receive government benefits and take jobs from Americans and legal seasonal workers.

However, kudos to Mr. Rodricks because he has come up with a great idea about how a simple action can help with the illegal immigration problem. He suggested consumers look for the label "picked by an American citizen." I would make a minor change to the label wording by printing, "picked by E-verified workers." The growers who abide by the E-verify employment laws will soon find their products are the choice of the American consumer and put non-compliant growers out of business. I am writing my elected representatives now.

Mr. Rodricks supports Maryland's Dream Act. However, it is curious that Mr. Rodricks does not explain how "a break in the cost of education" to illegal immigrants will benefit the Maryland taxpayer since a person must have legal status to work in this country. Exactly how will they use their education? Certainly not working.

Ron Wirsing, Havre de Grace

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