Immigration: Huddled Masses

Keep Your Masses! Sincerely, America
Brendan Burrow
ENGL 111 - OMH
Professor Skok
Ivy Tech Community College
February 21, 2011

Keep Your Masses! Sincerely, America
At the time the Statute of Liberty was dedicated in 1886, the sentiment regarding immigration to the United States was expressed in its inscription: “Give me your tired, your poor, / Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…”(Lazarus, 1883) Since its inception, the United States has welcomed millions of people, many in dire need, from all over the world.   In the mid-19th century, families suffering from the potato famine in Ireland fled their homes and traveled across the Atlantic to relocate in this country.   By 1850, the Irish made up a quarter of the populations in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore. (Laxton, 1997) The trend has continued.   In more recent history, from 2000 to 2005, nearly eight million immigrants made this land their home. (El Nasser, H. USA Today, 2005) Almost half this number entered illegally. (Conrey, B. The Washington Times, 2005)
Although the idea of extending open arms to those searching for a better life is heartwarming, the negative effects of such rampant illegal immigration are detrimental to the United States and its natural-born citizens.   Some of the many impacts of illegal immigration can be easily identified by examining the current health care system and associated costs, crime levels, and the billions of tax dollars dedicated to this issue.   Despite almost every American having a strong opinion on illegal immigration, most seem to spend more time spouting political rhetoric than formulating realistic solutions to this undeniable problem. It is critical for our society to focus on ways to protect Americans from the three aforementioned drawbacks of illegal immigration by implementing more stringent requirements to obtain medical care, tightening the reins on criminal activity, and seriously considering building a formidable wall along our...