The Declarer (Floyd McWilliams' Blog)

Monday, May 01, 2006

The San Jose Mercury News marches on in the service of immigrant advocacy. Today the top story on the Merc web front page is

Four immigrants leading the fight

When her mother from Mexico showed up at the door, Maria Marroquin knew she had made the right decision. She was cleaning houses for a living, helping out at a day-labor center and sharing a small house with her son and 16 other illegal immigrants.

So tomorrow, in the interest of "fairness" and "balance", shall we expect to see a simpering profile of a leading opponent of illegal immigration?

We won't? Shocking!

On Sunday the Merc wrote a piece on today's planned strike by immigrants, called "Imagine If They Vanished."

Imagine waking up tomorrow and every immigrant living illegally in Santa Clara County has vanished.

Many of the busboys, maids and field hands? Gone. Skilled carpenters, ceramic tilers and roofers? Missing. Landscapers, contractors and factory workers? Nowhere to be found.

What would happen? What would this county, with about 100,000 undocumented immigrants -- one out of every 18 residents -- look like? Would the fallout gum up the local economy as stores closed and construction sites shut down? Would tech workers call in sick because their nannies didn't show? Would luncheons and banquets that grease our social skids be canceled as kitchen staffs went missing?

What about schools? Would teachers face classrooms full of parentless kids? Would the lines at emergency rooms grow suddenly shorter? Would crops in Gilroy simply rot?

And that's the end of the list of effects. The author did not deem it necessary to list any countervailing possible benefits of the end of illegal immigration. (Actually he did, when he raised the spectre of "classrooms full of parentless kids" -- how about classrooms with fewer kids and a lower student-to-teacher ratio, a commonly stated goal of those who would spend more state monies on education? That this outcome is painted as unfavorable shows just how biased the Mercury News is on the subject of immigration.)


I favor unlimited immigration, and believe that America would be worse off without the cheap labor performed by those who live here outside the law. But today's boycott assumes its conclusion and therefore will do little to convince its opponents to change their stand. An opponent of wider immigration might reasonably note that illegal immigrants will not refrain from going to the emergency room or sending their children to school, and that one day without immigrant labor will not cause wage levels to change. Furthermore it's unlikely that a terrorist who snuck over a porous border will agree not to set off his nuclear or biological device.

Anyway the protests will have little or no effect; illegal immigrants come here to make money, not to participate in the Left's perpetual and pathetic attempts to recreate the year 1968. A more honest newspaper might have noted that.

Illegal immigration can be shown to have a favorale impact on the Merc's own employment possibilities; no fewer than six reporters contributed to the article I quoted. What, it takes half a dozen people to reprint pro-immigrant organizations' press releases? I guess if I worked for a newspaper that let me write on any subject I wanted, I would take advantage of it too; writing about contract bridge and baseball sounds like a lot more fun than reporting on the goings-on of the East Palo Alto Sanitary Board.



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