Immigration is primarily the movement of people from their country to a different country of which they do not have citizenship. According to the data of the Census Bureau, there are almost 42.4 million immigrants in the United States. According to the data of 2015, there are approximately 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. Illegal immigrants represents almost 3.4% of the total population of the United States. Mexicans make up half of the total unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. It was also stated that the U.S. civilian workforce comprises of 8 million illegal immigrants. Illegal immigration is a serious threat to United States’ national security. Mostly the undocumented immigrants are a grave issue to the countries security.
In almost all the industries, their number is more than the US-born workers. States like Texas, Florida, New York, New Jersey and California make up most of the unauthorized immigrants which is 59% of the total immigrants. “The Migration Policy Institute projected that approximately 820,000 illegal immigrants were convicted of a crime and about 300,000 were undocumented” (Yee and Davis). It is believed that the U.S. Mexican border forms an entrance of criminal activities in the country and easily connects immigration with terrorism. After the terrorist attack of September 11,2001, new security policies were documented. The Department of Homeland Security concluded that immigrants are a threat to the internal security of the country. (Cuslar.org)
The former commander in chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet asked the administration to increase the border-security as it will stop the entry of illegal immigrants. It was also seen that many undocumented immigrants got arrested by the local authorities of the country, but they were released soon (Cuslar.org). It is also seen that illegal immigrants transfer high economic costs because it lowers the domestic wages. Hence, economically, it is not viable to promote illegal immigration. Many changes in the policy of immigration were made which included strengthening employer verification of the employment, by implementing a temporary guest worker program and improving the border security.
At the same time, many people claim that illegal immigration is not a threat to the national security and there is no relationship between terrorism and immigration. People also argued that the absence of terrorist attacks in the United States is not because of the increased border force or because of strict policies on immigration. Whenever any type of illegal activities takes place in the country, the police searches for common illegal immigrants rather than the actual terrorists. Due to this, it gets very difficult for the immigrants to continue their work. The immigrants are also threat to the native workers because they take over the market especially in the agriculture field because they work at low wages.
Though the high number of illegal immigrants deform the laws and the resources and is more prone to terrorists and criminals at the same time they enhance the economy of the country. All the immigrants, be it a high-skilled or a low-skilled they increase the national output and as a result, the net economic is benefitted. Apart from this, it is seen that the immigrants’ families add more tax revenues in the economy of United States.
Illegal immigrants are a threat to national security as they are undocumented and therefore, if they commit a criminal offense, it is very difficult to trace them. Along with this, they get themselves involved in criminal activities such as gang banging, smuggling of guns and drugs in and out of the U.S. The countries confidential information is also at a considerable risk because it is very easy for illegal immigrants to get that information and leak it to different countries because of the work they do (maids, janitors etc..) that give them access to important offices. Most of the illegal immigrants are workers who work at low wages and hence they take over the jobs of the native people of America. The arrivals of illegal immigration also send the signal to U.S enemies that the U.S is weak and can’t protect its own border.
Illegal immigrant creates economic burden for the federal government by taking away jobs from the American people. In 1976, it was dubbed “the silent invasion of illegal aliens” which was exploiting taxpayer of 13 billion annually (Massey). Few laws like the AEDPA and the IIRIRA Acts of 1996 were passed which increased deportations of the illegal immigrants on basis of their criminal activities. The USA Patriot Act was also passed after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. This act gave many powers to the government on deporting the undocumented immigrants. Implementation of these reduced the rates of illegal immigrants but not to an extent which was needed. Many undocumented immigrants were also affected by these laws. Although the government of the United States tried to implement these laws but still they fail to secure the northern and southern borders of the country.
Although the economic rate is increasing, they also promote illegal currency in the country. According to a survey taken in 2015, it was also concluded that approx. 416,500 people whose tourist and business visas were expired but remained in the country for more than 2 years after the expiration” (Yee and Davis). It was also seen that nearly 409,900 immigrants were caught by the authorities of the United States who were crossing the borders of the country illegally.
It has been concluded that illegal immigration is a threat to the national security of United States even though it enhances the growth rate and the amount of revenue of the country. As it creates a security gap in the country and motivates terrorism and attacks. The United States government is implementing many laws to deport these immigrants and increasing the border security force so that the number of illegal immigrants entering the country gets less. Immigration is also a political issue because it cut downs the employment rate of native people of the country.