Dear Community Leaders:
As a Presidential Candidate for Election 2008, I am reaching out for community leaders across our nation to share this important message.
Most Americans have been raised with a consciousness of what makes us very special. We want to pride ourselves as being the kindest nation. Our Statue of Liberty has written on its tablet: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” by Emma Lazarus
As Americans we are also accustomed to a very most powerful and undauntable pride. This is for good reason. Americans no matter what race, creed, color, religion, or followings and beliefs, are for the most part, decent, fair and moral minded people.
As being the nation that represents the most diversity of cultures, can make our country quite strong in standing united. The common ground I see in our strength is when diversity is in balance.
Amendment I of the Constitution says that we can all be different. This Dignity afforded in Amendment I, we as Americans are expected to practice. This can make the United States strong and also admired by others across the globe. This in itself sets a precedent of what the United States at its core is really about.
The right of Free Expression in ‘Amendment I’ means that there is no one religion or belief that is recognized over another and that all should be respected. But this can only be achieved through the practice of our mutual respect. Each and every one of us comes from immigrants who settled in the United States. Each brings their heritage with them. It is a matter of mutual respect for our nation to remain rich through its cultures.
For those who have not learned or who are new to this mutual respect, it is for the rest of us to teach through its practice and expectation. This is how many bridges in our communities can be built where the tolerance in the acceptance of others who do not necessarily look like us is vitally important for our nation’s strength.
Although in the United States one can become quite rich, our self esteem must be based on principles first. I would rather share my time with one who is the poorest financially, but has self respect over one who is quite rich, but has not a sense of respect.
Today, what can tear our communities apart is our economy. Immigration has become an issue used for this. It has been used divisively for political gain by blaming unregistered immigrants as the cause of taking away jobs. There are an estimated minimum of 12 million people that are currently in our country who are not registered. They have been termed by politicians and the media as ‘Illegal’. When considering what is really illegal, let us consider the speed we drive our cars. It is typically about 10 miles per hour over what ever speed limit is set by law. Most feel that our speed limit signs are out of date. Further, we as the majority of American drivers are indifferent to law if we can get around it; that is regardless if out of date or not. The consequences are more fatal accidents, and far more fuel consumption.
Yet we speak of independence from foreign oil. The point: we must be honest enough to understand and accept our own contradictions. We must have speed limit signs that work and then to use them wisely. This is before being able to understand the smoke and mirrors that are handed to us about immigration.
What is not accounted for is that these 12 million unregistered immigrants, who we do call illegal, the IRS knows as being legal tax payers. They pay about $50 Billion a year in income tax. Over all, they bring about $200 Billion into our economy that does circulate into the hands of U.S. Citizens.
Compare this to the $800 Billion that leaves our country by visitors who work here and ship their money out of our county to their home. It is true that they pay taxes too, but what they keep is not spent or can circulate in the economy of our communities. So immigrants who do not really have a voice can be used as an escape goat to allow this cheap visitor labor force.
To be a legal American can cost upwards of $25,000 dollars. This should not be the case. Like our speed limit signs, it is a matter of revising some very outdated laws in the 1986 Immigration Reform Act. Simply, if you are working in this country, and your purpose is to become an American, I believe that you should be able to.
As a working tax payer, who intends to be a citizen, one is contributing to the economy of this nation. That is what is most important. One can also be part of a family, where a member is a working tax payer. This must be considered as opposed to just punitive measures for people who want to become Americans.
I have proposed revisions to the immigration laws. These revisions many view as fair and just. This is detailed in a document that is online at http://unity2008.org/Immigration.html. As the current state of our economy cannot afford people to arrive on our shores that are jobless, this must be considered. But of more importance, our economy cannot afford to lose $800 billion a year from visitor labor and off shoring of our jobs. I consider them for the most part also decent people, where many I do know, but it’s a matter of what we can currently afford and not afford for our burdened economy.
In recovering our economy through fair trade, and investing in our nation (as described here: http://unity2008.org/book/RestreOurNation.pdf ) , we can then galvanize our communities. This is in terms of education, language development, job training, and more viable paths towards citizenship.
I ask you to take an active interest in what is noted in the above. I am looking for help from community leaders so to have the policies I propose to be realized for our nation. This can only be accomplished where the voice of our nation can be heard on Nov. 4, 2008 if it is to speak for these policies.
Orion Karl Daley