By Joe Guzzardi
On his first day in office, President Biden signed an Executive Order to advance racial equity and to support underserved communities, an admirable goal, and one that most Americans share. Unfortunately for residents of those struggling communities, many of them African-American, on the same day, Biden signed several other Executive Orders that fundamentally changed how the new administration would deal with immigration. Those Executive Orders sent a message around the world that amnesty is on the table, and enforcement, for the most part, was off the table.
Although few could foresee how impossible to carry out Biden’s equity agenda would become once his immigration Executive Orders were implemented, the results are clear now. The huge influx of illegal immigrants at the border – an anticipated 2.1 million this year – legally admitted Ukrainian and Afghan evacuees, and more than 1 million legal immigrants admitted every year on autopilot have made employment conditions tough for underserved black Americans to find employment or to move up from their entry-level jobs into well-paid middle-class positions.
No president genuinely concerned about equity and black Americans’ futures could open the Southwest border and reward foreign nationals who have willfully and knowingly violated U.S. immigration laws with work authorization.
Since Biden took office through July 2022, about 4.9 million illegal immigrants, including about 900,000 gotaways, have crossed the border and entered the interior. For those among the 4.9 million who are working age, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics defines as 18 to 64, many if not most will receive work permission. Evacuees and legal immigrants also receive employment documents. Those who don’t could enter the underground economy, always fertile ground for unscrupulous employers.
But the purposely porous border isn’t the only culprit that suppresses black, Hispanic and other minority workers from moving up in the social strata. The Biden White House allows unnecessary employment-based visas to persist. Dozens of visa categories displace or put at a disadvantage Americans seeking low- and high-skilled jobs in the areas of leisure, landscaping, forestry, technology and medical science. Neither the donor class nor whomever occupies the White House blinks when talented, experienced Americans lose their jobs and have to train their foreign-born replacements. Deeply-in-debt university graduates are behind the eight ball when they’re forced to compete with cheaper overseas labor. The donor class wins; U.S. workers lose.
But the uncomfortable truth is that establishment Washington prefers foreign-born workers. Writing in Newsweek, Pamela Denise Long, a descendants of U.S. slaves advocate, asked why black dreams don’t matter. “Are descendants of U.S. slaves not supposed to notice how we and our countrymen are negatively affected by yet another bastardization of ‘social justice’?”
In her opinion article, Long wrote that “the immigration industrial complex built up around legal and illegal migration has abandoned what is patriotic and pro-American.” She references the 2010 Commission on Civil Rights report which found that the abundance of overseas workers expands the labor market, which eventually led to a 40 percent decline in employed low-skilled, native-born black men. Long called the Biden administration’s policies “the most expansive federal giveaway to legal and illegal migrants since President Reagan’s amnesty of 1986.”
Although Newsweek categorized Long’s essay as opinion, she wrote undeniable truths about the devastating effect that persistent high legal immigration and unchecked illegal immigration have on American workers, especially those with only a high school diploma or less. Long’s essay concluded with this admonition: “By supporting brain drain policies [importing foreign workers], Democrats, and officials who are Republican in name only are traitors against the American people. We see you!”
In his book, “Back of the Hiring Line,” author Roy Beck titled his final chapter, “Prioritize Descendants of Slavery?” Beck concluded that the most helpful immigration policy for non-college educated blacks will also be the correct immigration policy for other vulnerable Americans, including recently arrived legal immigrants. To put all Americans on a path to greater wealth, mass immigration must be dramatically reduced.
Joe Guzzardi is a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist who writes about immigration and related social issues. Joe joined Progressives for Immigration Reform in 2018 as an analyst after a ten-year career directing media relations for Californians for Population Stabilization, where he also was a Senior Writing Fellow. A native Californian, Joe now lives in Pennsylvania. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.