Is Immigration dying in the Land of Free, United States of America.
By: Ankit Khetarpal
Immigration, where often, the immigrants are the scapegoats of falling economy. Sometime, land borders are carefully given undue weightage, sometimes ignored to assume the demands of the economy. Here, we have US Economy, which was built on the hard-earned efforts of immigrants, which now is looked as enemy of the American public. Rather the question should be, who is American public. Does it include immigrants, or is it all immigrants, or is its unabashed white people, or do blacks voice counts, or is It American public including all people as a whole together.
Immigration, has been by lawyers, while practicing divided into three categories. They have often started practicing, and super specializing, if I may say so, in to those specific categories. They are, employment based, investment based, and currently though unfortunately most lucrative asylum-based immigration with a tinge of U visas. Though there is no such thing, as super specializing, but it is more out of practical aspect, depending upon whom often comes and knocks your doors for legal advice.
Every, set of immigration paths, has its own difficulties going down the roads of retrogression, delays, political compulsions, policy changes. We, lawyers often learn one thing, that immigration is not read by book, but by daily changes in immigration law, on USCIS website. Unfortunately, the most archaic, is the “birth” rule, which says, that that immigration to USA, is governed not by your intelligence, but by the place of birth. So, your line, your day the file will be opened, is more governed by the place of birth, more than your qualifications. Sometimes, it is possible, that the candidate, more qualified has to wait for decades, because of his place of birth. For example, an Indian applying for Green card, through Eb3 category with current priority date, i.e. 2020 may have to wait, more than 3 decades to think of getting green card. The Problem is not only for Indians, but also for Chinese, who are seeking endlessly the Elusive Green Card, through Investment program, due to enormous retrogression.
Unfortunately, who is suffering, or why so, nobody knows. Is having less immigrants coming to the country, a good idea and policy for development. Chinese and Indians having huge population, are currently the growth models, world is talking about. So is USA, going the wrong route, by restricting Immigration, and by not opening up. Often this question is posed, that Immigrants are eating the jobs of American public. If that is, so, I am sure Immigrants must be coming, earning and going back to their home country, and not eating, staying, living or spending in America. Perhaps, in that case, immigrants must not be applying for green cards, and just taking jobs and repatriating the money out of the country.
If that is not the case, then stopping immigration, is just reducing less expenditure in American Economy, which results in less growth of America, or at least if we compare with more populous economies who are currently on the growth chart of about 5% growth rate, whereas America is on the growth rate of 1%. So, does it mean, having more population, means having more consumption, which in turn results in more growth.
Immigration, is beneficial to the world, and not restriction to anybody. Open borders, welcome the world. Reduce visa and Immigrant restrictions, wait times etc. is the ideology of the day. Perhaps, if delays and policy changes weren’t enough, devising restrictions in the name of “specialty occupation” for H1B visa Holders, OPT applicants, or for that matter increasing the investment limit from $500,000 to $900,000, subject to other investment restrictions. The Coronavirus Pandemic (Covid-19) has taught us, that world is comprising of people, who need to work together to prevent such mis happenings and not divide them on the grounds of boundaries, or their birth.
When I put my food in the land of Free, strolling across the Philadelphia Roads as First year Law Student, little did I know, that it’s a place where Iconic scenes of Rocky were performed. Our Law School, had taken us for a ride, as group of international students, when across the road I saw the statue of Rocky Balboa, and immediately I was reminded, that this country belongs to winning by competition. The walk down the Schuylkill river, made me realize that history belongs to immigrants, who fought and made it what America is today. Have we lost that sense of empathy or realization, that welcoming and competing, makes us what we are, instead of closing doors? Sometimes, I feel, Immigration and Nationality Act, 1965 what I read, is more in books, and in practice the world is entirely different.
Be competitive, Be Italian stallion, Welcome the world, Rule the world, Be the best.