- - Sunday, August 5, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Congress should provide funding for a wall between the United States and Mexico. A wall would benefit everyone, including legal and illegal immigrants. Forcing all immigrants to enter the United States through a port of entry could ensure that they receive proper papers to obtain legal employment in the United States and be placed on the tax roles.

The United States is currently over $20 trillion in debt. Immigrants who enter the country illegally often work “off the books” or “under the table” and do not pay taxes — but utilize our infrastructure, hospitals, parks and human and emergency services. They also tend to be used and abused by unsavory members of our citizenry or immigrant street gangs, such as MS-13, or else engage in illegal activity themselves for their own economic survival. If they enter the country through a port of entry and are documented properly, they will not have to resort to such measures.

A secure wall would also put “coyotes” out of business. “Coyotes” use, abuse and prey on people who want to enter the United States illegally, charging them exorbitant fees that they must pay off while working illegally in the United States. They often lead immigrants in cross-desert and wilderness treks the migrants are not physically able to make, or they transpor them in inhumane conditions that sometimes result in death.

A wall would curtail human- and drug-trafficking operations, thereby lessening the strain on law-enforcement resources. It doesn’t take nuclear weapons or an invading army to take down a country. The Roman Empire imploded from within, with immigration being one of the main contributing factors. Secure borders with a merit- and morals-based immigration policy.

EDWARD J. SMITRESKI

Northampton, Pa.

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