Immigration and the long term viability of the American Dream.
We, the undersigned, are signing this online petition to express our views regarding the ongoing Immigration debate. Immigrants desiring to come to America have in some way or the other come across the term "The American Dream". Simply put, it is the United States' ability to attract talent from around the world, provide an environment for entrepreneurship and technological development and a society with high living standards. For the American dream to remain viable, the United States congress needs to seriously consider the Immigration reforms that are being brought forward. Below are few key points relevant in this discussion.
Legal immigrants in the United States mainly constitue intellectual talent from around the world who are generally professionals like Software engineers and doctors. These category of Immigrants have had no desire to move to countries like Mexico, El-Salvador, Cuba or Haiti. If the United States encourages illegal immigrants from these countries, it is going to be less attractive for the intellectual immigrants to come to the United States. Because if left unchecked the United States is going to be like one of these countries.
Today, it is no secret that India and China are becoming hotbeds for economic progress and technological advancement. If America does not maintain its attractiveness to this global intellectual resource pool, it is going to negatively affect the prosperity of the United States, while the talent moves towards India and China.
Some of the brightest students in the United States universities are immigrants from countries like India and China. There is no incentive for these students to stay back resulting in an outward brain drain.
More and more intellectual immigrants who are currently in the United states legally, are considering going back to their homelands because of the hassles legal immigrants face in gaining long term legal status. Many are on visa programs like H1-B which is valid only for 6 years.
Legal immigrants mainly employed in the United States through H1 and L1 visas pay on an average between $20,000 and $40,000 annually in income taxes.
Legal immigrants contribute significantly in driving the United States economy with their superior buying power.
Legal immigrants pay huge amounts of money to the Immigration dept for visas, visa renewals, employment authorization cards, Advance paroles and various other fees to maintain legal status. Illegal immigrants do not pay any fees or taxes and the government is considering handing out Citizenship to them.
All our lives, we have been taught to never jump a line and to patiently wait in line for your turn. Today, illegal immigrants are allowed to jump the line and get ahead of all the legal immigrants who struggle hard with burdensome documentation to maintain legal status. It takes a legal immigrant about 10 years to get citizenship, whereas for illegal immigrants, there is no debate about visas or green cards or permanent residence, instead the talk is about granting straight citizenship. How is this fair to all the legal immigrants waiting in line?
Legal immigrants today are divided into two groups. One group is questioning the attractiveness of America as more and more illegal and uneducated immigrants dilute the living standards and quality of life in America. With emerging markets providing greater oppurtunity and stability they are considering moving to these countries. The second group still believes that America is the place to be, but unfortunately, the legal immigration system is so inefficient, backlogged and slow that they are forced to leave in despair. Either way, both groups are leaving the United States.
We as a group of legal intellectual immigrants are not opposed to Immigration reform, but strongly believe in a better process. A process which would be beneficial to the United States. If the United States were a corporation, it would only make sense to recruit the top level intellectual immigrants as citizens, that would move the corporation forward with huge profits. Instead the move United States is considering is akin to hiring 12 million janitors; sure the place will be clean, but America will be poor and bankrupt.
Please forward this message widely so that it reaches the senators and the US congress.
Hope for the best,
Legal Intellectual Immigrants.