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Activists Say Immigrant’s Death Demonstrates Need For Immigration Reform

Audio

Aired 6/1/10

Immigrants rights activists say the story of a man who died after being tasered by border officials is another example of why the nation's immigration system must change.

Immigrants rights activists say the story of a man who died after being tasered by border officials is another example of why the nation's immigration system must change.

Forty-two-year-old Anastasio Hernandez and his brother crossed the border illegally Friday night and got caught.

Anastasio's family said he'd been deported a few days earlier and was desperate to get back to his wife and five children in Encanto. He's lived there since he crossed the border illegally to work 26 years ago.

Federal border officials said Anastasio became out of control Friday as they processed him for deportation. Officials said they Tasered him.

Family members said Anastasio was brain dead. He died Monday night, before being removed from life support.

Christian Ramirez coordinates the American Friends Service Committee. He said U.S. immigration policies are largely to blame.

"The story of Anastasio is the story of many migrants who have been ripped apart from their families as the result of our failed immigration system. Tragically, this particular incident will end in death, " said Ramirez.

Mexican consular officials say Anastasio's brother is in Border Patrol custody.

Comments

Avatar for user 'VictoriaSethunya'

VictoriaSethunya | May 31, 2010 at 2:22 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

We are a country that promotes democracy (perhaps justice) overseas, while here at home within our own borders we have need to promote the same.

Why does the story of a brain dead man demostrate need for immigration reform? You are talking about a country that still believes in death penalty even for people for whom there is doubt that they committed the crimes. For death row inmates, some of the captives of our system have long been brain dead and there is no mercy, no justice or demostration for reform: Anthony Troy Williams in Georgia is an example.

So, what is a man dying for immigration?

We have put life decisions in the hands of people who themselves may not understand the worth of a soul including their own.

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Avatar for user '001citizen'

001citizen | May 31, 2010 at 7:39 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

Well, border partols did the right thing they have to protect themselves from attacks so they did the right thing. We also need to get rid of all the illegals who are here in CA living off our money getting Medical, welfare and other benefits that are only for us citizens and legal residents. Also I don't mean to discriminate but if you are illegal here in the USA you don't have any rights here so the Arizona Law is great we need it here in CA. I honestly believe that illegals lost their right once they crossed the border illegally it is not unconsitutional that illegals here in the USA don't have rights because they are not here legally the people who should be the only ones with rights here are citizens and legal residents of the USA. Sorry if I should hard but I think it is enough with illegal immigrants and the killings of border patrols who are doing their job to protect us citizens and legal residents of the USA. I think all of these people fighting for rights for illegals are wrong what rights if they are here illegal they are breaking the law they don't have any rights NO IMMIGRATION REFORM. This man did something wrong and he is the only one who is to blame for what happened.

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Avatar for user 'Silver51'

Silver51 | June 1, 2010 at 7:38 a.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

001 why so much anger for these people, these are God's creation too and a human being. You have to agree with me that the immigration system is broken. The man that just died have a family and had live his life in the US for 26 years. Where is your compassion on this? In God's eyes we were all created equally and no one suppose to be above others. I know that disrespecting the law is not right. But we all need to know what was the circumstances of this man why did he came to America illegally? I am sure is for survival. Someday, we will all be judge by our Creator Jehovah God. We need to show our compassion to the needy, after this great country america is made of immigrants like you and me.

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Avatar for user 'VictoriaSethunya'

VictoriaSethunya | June 1, 2010 at 9:03 a.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

Anthony Troy Davis. Not Williams.

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Avatar for user 'VictoriaSethunya'

VictoriaSethunya | June 1, 2010 at 9:08 a.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

001 citizen

I am not sure I follow your argument, but did the man attack the border patrol? Also, do you lose your right as US citizen to continue being a US citizen by breaking the laws of your country? I guess my question is, if the police caught you in a crime, could they assault you because they found you engaged in illegal activity?

Please educate me. I am a foreigner in the US.

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Avatar for user 'astrofan'

astrofan | June 1, 2010 at 9:41 a.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

I think it demonstrates that people shouldn't break the law. Silver51, let me explain this slowly to you--if he hadn't broken the law he wouldn't have been tasered. No anger from me, just a pretty clear statement of fact.

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | June 1, 2010 at 11:57 a.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

The story is: "Federal border officials said Anastasio became out of control Friday as they processed him for deportation."

He became out of control so they tasered him. Unfortunately he died as a consequence of that. Have any of you ever had to deal with an adult that is uncooperative, or out of control?

We shouldn't change the immigration laws to serve the people who break the law, we should support the men and women who enforce it and get a grip on the reality and the dangers of that job that they have to deal with daily.

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Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | June 1, 2010 at 12:02 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

Does it seem odd to anyone else that the argument in support of the perpetrator looks to be based on a modern interpretation of bronze-age theology instead of actual law?
Silver, do you have a substantive argument for endorsing Mr. Hernandez’s violations? Are you appealing to emotion?

VS, the article above states "Federal border officials said Anastasio became out of control Friday as they processed him for deportation. Officials said they Tasered him." This implies to me that he was attacking the officials deporting him. Hopefully further investigation will provide this detail.

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Avatar for user 'logan'

logan | June 1, 2010 at 12:05 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

the man did not die because of (1) tazzer, he died because 20 border patrol officers beat him up and repeatedly tazzered him. 001 your argument is that back when those cops stopped Rodney king he had it coming because he ran a light and broke the law. That does not give you the right to murder anyone

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | June 1, 2010 at 1:39 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

@logan

So you know what the news hasn't released - that 20 officers beat him to death? There will be an investigation into the man's death, we'll know when that is completed what exactly was the cause, and what happened.

As per Rodney King, remember what preceded Rodney's beating by cops - he was driving nearly one hundred miles per hour while being pursued by police. You know, those black and white cars with the lights on top and sirens that most of us understand you need to pull over and stop for? When they finally get him over he is a big man high on drugs and is resisting arrest. Had he ran over someone's child or wife while in this state, or killed an officer trying to apprehend him how might the story have read then?

No one wants the police, immigration, or border patrol to abuse their authority, but let's keep some perspective here.

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Avatar for user 'logan'

logan | June 1, 2010 at 4:47 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

@ randolphslinky

Exactly, some perspective, but its normal i guess, if this was a US citizen beaten to death by Mexican officers for breaking a Mexican law you would be screaming for justice and the heads of those responsible (remember the border officer killed by drug runners), but since its someone who broke US law and in doing so in the eyes of a lot of people here deserved everything he got is just nauseating.

I do hope at least some officers lose their jobs for abuse of authority, at least.

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Avatar for user 'Silver51'

Silver51 | June 1, 2010 at 5:18 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

Regardless of the issue no one should die because of this broken immigration system. Who are we to condenmed the man who is just trying to reunite with his family. What if you were on this man's situation? Remember he has live his life in the US for 26 years, raised a family. All he wants is just reunite with his family and it cause his life. I still believe that what ever God put it together let no man set them apart and that is exactly what happened, he was deported a week ago and decided to cross illegally to reunite with his family can you blame the man? If i were in his shoes i will be doing the same. That is why Pres Obama and the Congress needs to pass 3 important Legislation such as:
Family Reunification Act, Dream Act & Agjobs. We do not need to have Amnesty. These legislation will help families that has been separated by this harsh and inhumane system that we have. The dream act will help you ones to become more competitive in the future having been given opportunity to graduate from college and become productive citizen of the country. Agjobs this will help our farm owners and help us the consumers as well. After America becomes great because of the hard working immigrants legals or illegals.

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Avatar for user 'Silver51'

Silver51 | June 1, 2010 at 5:22 p.m. ― 4 years, 7 months ago

It would be nice if this incident should be on the front page news so that people will understand or Mr Obama and the Congress should be notified to see how harsh it is. Please can someone publish this on the front page of the news statewide?

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Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | June 2, 2010 at 7:43 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

Silver, are you advocating that those who are detained by law enforcement, but don't like it should be able to become violent and the official should just let them go on doing whatever it was they were detained for?
Are you saying that since he has been breaking the law for 26 years he sould be allowed to continue doing so?
We do not need a family reunification act. There is no statute keeping his family out of Mexico. They are free to join him where he properly belongs.

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Avatar for user 'randolphslinky'

randolphslinky | June 2, 2010 at 9:21 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

@logan

Again, if you read the article, "he became out of control," and to regain control apparently one of the officers tasered him - this is all we know.

I respect the law and the fact that if you break it, and furthermore become unruly and aggressive with officers you may be gambling with your life. They have a right to protect themselves and should not be held responsible for acting reasonably to regain control over any situation. WE DO NOT know yet what exactly happened.

If you ever had to deal with someone who is angry (no matter how justifiable), and out of control and in your face, spitting, clawing, scratching, kicking, whatever, you're "fight or flight" kicks in and you react, hopefully with the level of control to quell that situation and no more. But that isn't always so easy my friend.

Unfortunately this man died, but again, he made the choice to break the law and then get out of control with the officers handling him. This isn't a reason to change immigration laws, it's a reason for those who are contemplating breaking our laws to consider the potential consequences.

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Avatar for user 'truthteller'

truthteller | June 3, 2010 at 9:04 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

Why use euphemisms?
He is NOT an immigrant.
He IS a CRIMINAL.
AND, he was messed up on meth and tried to kill two AMERICAN law enforcement officers.
Seems to me, he lived a criminal and died a criminal.

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Avatar for user 'huevos'

huevos | June 4, 2010 at 11:01 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

The entire economy of the United States of America is highly contributed by all the citizens, residents and illegal residents from all over the world. That's what makes the U.S. unique. If the rest of the countries in the world can't or won't support their citizens is a complicated issue in which we may never find out the real truth .People often blame all illegal immigrants for the mistakes and faults that the U.S. government has made in the past 8/9 years. Not many recognize that THEY "Immigrants" also contribute a big chunk to the economy of the U.S.
By having an Immigration Reform it will help to control the border not only from Mexico and the rest of the Latin America, but also from people who come from Canada, Brittan, Russia, Middle East, China etc. They’re also trying to either stay in the U.S. Or have a better future and their own countries. They spent several years working here to save enough to go back.

P.S. I posted my comment 2 days ago but didn't see it.

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Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | June 4, 2010 at 1:16 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

What illegal aliens provide is slave labor to large agri-corporations, manufacturers, and restaurants. Illegal aliens don't have social security numbers and don't pay taxes, thus businesses don't need to cover them with insurance, pay social services taxes, or provide retirement benefits. They don't even need to pay minimum wage. Thus, they are basically slaves.

Anyone who promotes amnesty, or the three idiotic Obama promoted bills Family Reunification Act, Dream Act, and AgJobs is a supporter of slavery. Encouraging those businesses to hire illegal aliens and promoting the arrival of more is a crime against humanity.

We all must be willing to pay higher prices to reflect the TRUE cost of business. Illegal alien slavery MUST end and they MUST go home.

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Avatar for user 'JulieNadine'

JulieNadine | June 4, 2010 at 4:58 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

The whole thing is very sad. Mr. Hernandez had lived in San Diego for more than 25 years, since he was 14 or 15. Unlike other offenses, entering without papers doesn't go away when you reach adulthood, and there is apparently no statute of limitations. There was no way for him to legalize his status. He had been torn away from his home, his wife and his children, and got caught trying to come back. I can't imagine anybody in his circumstances NOT trying to escape.

The problem with having excessive laws is that it puts you in the position of having to use force to make people comply. With tragic results in this case.

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Avatar for user 'huevos'

huevos | June 4, 2010 at 5 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

@ CalifoniaDefender

First, not all illegal immagrants don't pay taxes. They're many who use a TIN number to file their taxes. Second (and this is because part I agree with what you saying and part don't) NAFTA should be remove.

P.S. I have to go but I will continue this topic with you later. You need to be more inform.

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Avatar for user 'dherrer1'

dherrer1 | June 7, 2010 at 10:49 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

To All,
We live in a country with a judicial system that for the most part works. It is tragic what happened to this man but if 20 Federal agents did beat him to death I am sure there is a line of attorneys waiting to take this families case irrespective of the mans immigration status. What we should do is find out where and for whom he worked for for 26 years. This company or individual is just as guilty as the man himself. Our immigration system is NOT out of control..we have plenty of very reasonable laws on the books. We just need to enforce them. There are 50 million people in Mexico living in poverty. Our we willing to accept them all here? If not we better start to wake up and do something reasonable about it. Enforcing our laws is NOT an act of racism, it's what all countries do every day encluding Mexico. The Bible says nothing about Open Borders. At the root the problem is greedy people here who want cheap labor and a corrupt government in Mexico that doesnt care about it's own people. As an example..has the Mexican Consulate in San Diego agreed to cover the legal expensives of these people (family members)? Of course not, and they will not.....Mexico is a independent country and needs to solve it's own problem. The actual have the resourses to do so.

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Avatar for user 'juancalcala'

juancalcala | June 8, 2010 at 12:42 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

@dherrer1
Regardless of where you stand on the issue, the fact that there are 12 million undocumented immigrants in this country is a clear and simple fact that our immigration system is broken. Unfortunately, the US does not have the power to deport 12 million people. Even if we deported 100,000 people per month it would take 10 years to deport all of them... that's considering that no new immigrants come here and those deported do not come back. This is simply not possible. No politician will go after the INDUSTRIES like agriculture, hotel and tourism, restaurants, janitorial, meat packing plants... etc. etc. There are billions of dollars involved. Please guys, don't be naive, your congressman/senator will never listen to you over these super powerful donors. So what is the answer? Yes let's secure our border, but we also need to legalize immigrants like this poor guy who made an entire life here with his family! Consider that his children were probably born here and can not relate to any other country other than the USA. Many children of undocumented immigrants can't even speak any other language that is not English. For all intents and purposes these people are as Americans as you and I. We need to secure our borders but we also need to legalize the ones already here. Only then can we heavily crack down on employers who hire NEW undocumented immigrants.

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Avatar for user 'dherrer1'

dherrer1 | June 8, 2010 at 11:12 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

@juancalcula,
As soon as we legalize the 12 million that are here now, we will have another 12 million arrive. You have allot more faith on this fence then I do. It won't work. All it has done is made the cost of hiring a coyote to bring you accross more expensive. I really do believe that we can pressure american companies to stop hiring them, but first we need to get serious about it. Most of these companies will only comply once the risks are greater than the rewards. Can we deport 12 million people, we won't have to. For the most part they will leave on their own. Once the reason for being here is gone they will choose to go home and take their kids with them. There are MANY mexicans living in Mexico who were born in the USA. They are doing just fine. I think saying..ohhh this problem is too hard is not very american and is one of the reasons we are where we are. At the core we need to understand that a prosperos and democratic Mexico is in or best interest. NAFTA is the cause of much of the poverty that exists today in Mexico. It has destroyed what little argriculture they had. Mexico exports it's farmers and now has to import most of it's food..guess from who....US!! I would much rather send aid and resources south to Latin America then the 82nd Airborne Division to Afganistan. Americans need to start to connect the dots between or foreign policy and issues like illegal immegration.

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Avatar for user 'zorst'

zorst | June 8, 2010 at 11:35 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

I feel bad for this person who died. Our system is broken. We need to make a statement that we intend to repair it and send back all illegals to their country of origin. Then the message will be if you want to come here do it legaly.

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Avatar for user 'whiteblack'

whiteblack | June 8, 2010 at 10:07 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

What illegal aliens provide is slave labor to large agri-corporations, manufacturers, and restaurants & etc.... First, not all illegal immagrants don't pay taxes. They're many who use a TIN number to file their taxes. You need to be more inform to this topics.....

_______________________________
Whiteblack

Cruise Ships

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Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | June 9, 2010 at 3:34 p.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

Huevos,

Still waiting for you to "inform" me. I guess you have nothing more to say.

As far as TINs go, yes we commonly see illegal aliens in the fields filing paperwork for TINs. Give me a break. They DO NOT pay taxes. If they did, employers would be arrested for violating of labor laws. Furthermore, illegal aliens make next to nothing, so does it make any sense for them to try and give some of their meager wages to the government? Nope.

There is no incentive to pay taxes, not from the employer side and not from the employee side. Illegal immigration must be stopped cold.

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Avatar for user 'lupartera2'

lupartera2 | June 11, 2010 at 10:41 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

They pay taxes in the business sector: they BUY things, remember sales tax. They contribute the the economy. See this video to enlighten you please. In 2009 in Potsville, Iowa the ICE conducted a huge raid at a meat slaughter house in that town which employed all immigrants mostly from Guatemala. It devasted the town's economy and also families in Guatemala. It's a pretty balanced report---documentary on PBS FRONTLINE it's on the internet for free.
Also see the second one on the California San Joaquin Valley how farmers are suffering too. if the link does not work go to copy and paste to your browser and scroll the the reports the first one is recent 5/11/10 and the second one is 9/10/09

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/video/share.html?s=frow03s3052qb71

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/video/share.html?s=frow03s3052qb71

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Avatar for user 'lupartera2'

lupartera2 | June 11, 2010 at 10:43 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

here is the one from Guatemala and potsville, Iowa.

http://www.pbsws.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/video/share.html?s=frow03s3052qb71

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Avatar for user 'lupartera2'

lupartera2 | June 11, 2010 at 10:45 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

wrong link: here it is one more time:

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/video/share.html?s=frow03s3052qb71

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Avatar for user 'lupartera2'

lupartera2 | June 11, 2010 at 10:55 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

I guess i'm new at this i needed to embed the video then post: here is the story of 2 countries but most of all that I found so profound is the human factor in this very complex equation. Look at it for yourself.

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Avatar for user 'lupartera2'

lupartera2 | June 11, 2010 at 11:05 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago


Here is the story of 2 countries but most of all that I found so profound is the human factor in this very complex equation of immigration policies. Look at it for yourself.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/video/share.html?s=frow03s2db3qac5

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Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | June 12, 2010 at 11 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

Lupartera,

Thanks for the multiple links, but you are still unable to see the whole picture. First off, sales tax? Really? You think buying tube socks and paying 3 cents in sales tax is contributing to the economy? These people are incredibly poor and are buying only essentials, not Mercedes and diamond earrings. In fact most illegal aliens purchase items at garage sales and other non-taxable outlets. Despite being uneducated, they are not dumb.

Contributing to the economy is more complex and involves paying income, medicare, social, and other taxes as well as contributing to retirement accounts. It also involves buying homes and laying down roots. Illegal aliens send almost all of their money south. In fact, it is Mexico's #1 source of income. Not manufacturing, not investments, not agriculture, not tourism, not even drugs. Mexico itself is leeching off of America for its very existence. Without America's lax immigration enforcement and greedy corporations, Mexico would fail as a nation.

You also pointed to towns in America falling apart because illegal aliens were arrested. I applaud it, welcome it, and hope it happens more. If any town in America bases its economy on slave labor, it SHOULD fail. I have no sympathy for the greedy, inhuman inhabitants of those places.

Lastly, you pointed to farmers. Small family farms are not failing because they can't find cheap labor. They are failing because agri-corporations are employing illegal aliens and keeping the prices of produce artificially low. I would gladly pay much more for a bag of carrots if I knew they were picked by citizens for a fair wage.

The true cost of illegal aliens is passed on to citizens in the form of higher taxes, failing schools, broken infrastructure, depleted resources, and a sagging economy. The horrible slavery of illegal aliens must end and they must go home.

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Avatar for user 'dherrer1'

dherrer1 | June 14, 2010 at 10:10 a.m. ― 4 years, 6 months ago

@CaliforniaDefender
You are 100% correct. A person making minimun wage or less does not pay enough taxes to cover the social costs they bring to a local community. The math just does not add up!!!! The issue is about companies being able to have a captive labor force that they can pay the minimun wage for. The issue that these are jobs americans won't do is not complete. Americans won't do these jobs at these wages. In California the minimun wage was increased from $6.00/hour to $8.00 per hour recently. Even at $8.00 these wage is totally unrealistic and they only reason it exists is that there are illegals that accept it. It is well documented that if you only take into account infationary factors todays minimun wage should be about $12-$13 per hour. This does not take into account reasonable Cost of Living Adjustments which would move it close to $15 per hour. Try this wage and see how many Americans apply for these jobs!!! We need to understand the real issues here. First Mexico does not want to make the changes it needs to to address it's issue of poverty. Americans need to stop being so greedy and pay working class people a reasonable wage. Corporations won't do this until the risks of being caught far out way the benefits of hiring illegals. Once the incentive to be here illegally goes away these people will go home and not return.

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