Marc Hoover:
The immigration dilemna

President Donald Trump has caught much flack for his position against immigration. While he wants to address the issue, the previous administration wasn’t so adamant about addressing it. I have heard many opinions on immigration.

Marc Hoover

While out shopping yesterday, I overhead a gentleman discussing immigration with his family. He referred to the Statue of Liberty welcoming all immigrants. Let’s face it, we are all immigrants. Our country started as a prison colony. Before the first Caucasian man arrived, the American Indian was hunting buffalo and pitching teepees.

Regardless of who you are, your family immigrated from somewhere to get to America. Many years ago, the government allowed everyone into America. Millions of immigrants from Ireland, China, Germany and many other countries left their homes with nothing more than a few dollars in their pockets and a dream. But that was decades ago. America is no longer the same country. For instance, immigrants came to America to make a life for themselves. No one came to America to destroy it.

Although some feel Trump’s plan to slow immigration is not politically correct, he cannot worry about hurting feelings. He has a country to protect against those who hate what America represents. President Donald Trump must keep order and stop terrorism.

I am an immigrant that migrated into this great country years ago. I came into America with a green card and applied for American citizenship. I completed the required documents, obeyed our laws, and paid taxes.

I even served in the U.S. Army, which isn’t even a guarantee of citizenship. Many people incorrectly assume that citizenship is granted to non-citizen military members. Nothing could be further from the truth. Our military will allow non-citizens to join and risk life and limb. However, the government doesn’t give these men and women citizenship. They must still go through the process as I did years ago.

Does it bother me that our government punishes illegal immigrants? No, it doesn’t. But I have heard opposing opinions claim everyone should be allowed into America. So what about those who legally became citizens? Is it fair to overlook them after they followed immigration laws?

When I became a citizen in 1993. It was one of the proudest moments of my life. I had to go through an extensive background check and take a test based on American government. I received my citizenship document in downtown Indianapolis.

The government should continue allowing immigration, if handled legally. The problem with illegal immigration is that it creates headaches for our government. Many of these individuals were criminals in their home country. So they come to America and commit crimes. And then our government provides medical care and social services to these people. Undocumented immigration is an ongoing problem because no one knows how many live in America. Also, none of them pay taxes. Many work “under the table” for cash. And they will continue to sneak into the country, if they can find jobs. If the government wants to reduce immigration, they must tighten the borders and punish employers who hire people who are here illegally.

My suggestion is to create an amnesty program and give those here illegally a year to apply. Each application would be scrutinized. If the individual worked and stayed out of trouble, then they could become citizens. Otherwise they face deportation. The government must develop strict criteria to decide who receives citizenship. For now, it doesn’t look like the government has a clue on handling the immigration crisis. President Trump has placed a line in the sand and vowed to take a stand on immigration. What will he do in four years? Hopefully, he doesn’t worry about political correctness and focuses more on our safety. We need that type of leadership from Washington.

Marc is a grandparent and longtime resident of Clermont County. Visit his author page Life with Grandpa and his blog Wise Grandpa.