Cumberland Times-News

Opinion

July 10, 2013

How will this ‘reform’ help Marylanders?

With passage of the U.S. Senate’s “Immigration Reform” legislation, much hoopla is being made by Gov. Martin O’Malley, Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, the Democratic supermajority in Annapolis, the Montgomery County Council, the Maryland NAACP, the Catholic Church and other Maryland civic and business “leaders.”

The bill, if passed by the House and signed by the president, would provide instant legal status and a path to full citizenship for about 20 million mostly Hispanic illegal immigrants in the U.S., including nearly 500,000 in Maryland. Why the celebration?

The real question for Maryland’s citizens is how granting legal status and citizenship to illegal immigrants helpss our families find or maintain employment, lower taxes, decrease housing foreclosures, improve local schools and college opportunities, address crime, drug abuse and MS-13 gang violence, and lessen community hospital bankruptcies.

With review of the Senate bill, it is clear that illegal immigrants, not Marylanders, are the overwhelming beneficiaries. Immigration reform, as defined by the Senate, will not improve the quality of life or economic status of our families and neighbors, especially for blacks and other minorities. The opposite effect will take place.

Despite massive state and local spending on education, social services and public safety, Baltimore, Prince George’s County and growing portions of Montgomery County have some of the nation’s poorest performing schools.

Where these jurisdictions do rate higher is on crime, MS-13 (Hispanic) gang violence, drug abuse and reliance on needed social services. With dramatically increased numbers of newly legalized immigrants, most uneducated/unskilled and non-English speaking, there will never be enough Maryland tax dollars to maintain even current levels of spending for education, social services and public safety for blacks and other citizens.

The Senate amnesty also worsens opportunities for college scholarships and grants, access to affordable healthcare and hospital emergency room care, and job opportunities for Maryland citizens.

Black unemployment in Maryland is already at double-digit levels, with teenage unemployment closer to 50 percent. Increased competition for jobs from hundreds of thousands of legalized immigrants will put further stress on Maryland families, especially middle class families where breadwinners do not possess a college degree.

Even college educated Marylanders will have jobs challenged by legalized immigrants. CASA of Maryland (Central American Solidarity Association), a taxpayer funded, illegal alien support group recently hosted a forum demanding Hispanic access to positions as Prince George’s County teachers, principals and even elected school board members.

Attended by Hispanic elected officials in Prince George’s County, these representatives want jobs now for their growing and soon to be legal ethnic population.

Maryland’s illegal immigrant gardeners, day laborers, dishwashers, nannies, fast food workers and others who pay little or no taxes and work despite having no legal authorization now want the higher wage positions and union jobs encumbered by citizens. CASA and other Hispanic groups are to receive $150 million annually in the Senate Bill.

Fortunately, some black Americans are beginning to realize their American Dream could evaporate before their eyes by full passage of immigration reform.

A new group of independent thinking black leaders has emerged — industry executives, clergy, educators, politicians and others to form the Black American Leadership Alliance. The alliance plans a “D.C. March for Jobs” on July 15, 9:30 a.m. at Freedom Plaza off Pennsylvania Avenue. See www.DCMarchforjobs.com.

The march is in opposition to amnesty legislation passed by the Senate. Instead, the alliance demands jobs for the more than 22 million unemployed/underemployed American citizens.

No need to legalize 20 million illegal immigrants, their extended families from Mexico and Central America, and millions more as permanent guest workers for jobs just don’t exist. All concerned Marylanders are invited to come.

Brad Botwin, director helpsavemaryland.org

Rockville

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