The Contribution of Immigrants to the United States

An overview of the issue of immigration to the United States from the perspective of immigrants and the country as a whole.

The paper discusses the benefits immigrants provide to the U.S. economy and relates that immigrants fill jobs that U.S. citizens often reject, they help the economy maintain competitiveness in the global economy, and they stimulate job creation in depressed neighborhoods. The paper then focuses on the experience of the immigrants themselves and discusses the language barriers that exist, the credit problems immigrant face and the legislation that allows immigrants to be deported for even minor infractions. The paper draws the conclusion that there are many advantages and disadvantages of immigration to the United States.
“Since the founding of America, more than 55 million immigrants from around the world have settled in the United States. With the exception of Native Americans, all people living in America are either an immigrant or descendants of voluntary or involuntary immigrants. Yet every wave of immigration has faced fear and hostility when there are economic hardships, political turmoil or war. Today, an anti-immigrant movement has been seeking to curtail the rights of many people living in the United States. In 1994 California voters adopted “Proposition 187″ which denied most basic services to anyone suspected of not being a citizen or legal resident, including education, health and social services. In 1996, President Clinton signed into law the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (the new welfare law), which took a wide range of federal benefits and services away from both undocumented and legal immigrants (including food stamps and Supplemental Security Income.”