Updated: Jan 20
At a recent pro-illegal immigration event held by Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, she asked the mayor of Somerton, Arizona, Gerardo Anaya, why he supports unfettered immigration, and surprisingly, he said the quiet thing out loud when he replied, “We need cheap labor.” Republican Senator Thom Tillis stepped in and put a euphemistic spin on Mayor Anaya blunt remark by saying, “I wouldn’t call it cheap labor. I would call it affordable labor.” You know what also could be called “affordable labor”, Senator Tills? Slavery.
These people are not much different than the slave owners in the Antebellum South or President Xi in China. These people do not look at the illegal immigrants coming into the United States as human beings, they view them as commodities, no different than if they were buying a tractor or cultivator. Illegal immigrants are not human beings to them because if a new machine could do the work that these illegal immigrants are doing, but cheaper, they would suddenly be against illegal immigration.
It doesn’t matter to them that the massive influx of illegal immigrants into our country over the last couple of years has driven down wages and driven up housing costs for most Americans. All that matters to them is that their rich CEO donors make bigger profits so they can donate more money to their reelection campaigns. They don’t care that erasing our border is destroying the sovereignty of the United States of America; all they care about is keeping their well-paying government jobs. It’s interesting how people so cheaply compromise their morality.
The motivation for illegal immigration is the same motivation for slavery – cheap or affordable labor. Plantation owners needed a way to get the cotton picked as cheaply as possible so they could maximize their profit margins, so if that meant purchasing African slaves from a transatlantic slave trader, they did it. This is the same reason why we have been shipping our manufacturing over to China for the last three decades. If using slave labor or child labor in sweat shops in China produces iPhones and sneakers as cheaply as possible so Apple and Nike can maximize their profit margins, they will do it.
This has been an issue since the dawn of human civilization – how do we get the work we need done as cheaply as possible. This is why slavery has been embedded into the history of every civilization. Is it merely a coincidence that the Western World developed a conscience about slavery only after laborsaving machines like the cotton gin, the reaper and the thresher were invented? We only started looking at slaves as human beings after we invented machines that could do the work that they had been enslaved to do.
Some have argued that illegal immigrants do the work that Americans will not do. Which is partially correct but they failed to complete the sentence. Illegal immigrants do the work that Americans will not do for two dollars per hour. Pay a reasonable wage for the work that needs to be done, and there will be Americans who will do it. It is amazing that the liberals who are always pounding the drum for increasing the minimum wage support importing massive numbers of illegal immigrants which not only drives down wages for Americans but is also causes hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants to work for substandard wages in substandard working conditions. So, the liberal who virtuously demands an increase in the minimum wage is only fighting for the barista at Starbucks to make $25 per hour, but could care less about the illegal immigrant who is working 12 hours per day under the scorching sun of Arizona for $2 per hour.
What Sinema, Tillis and Anaya were really saying at that event in Arizona is that they want their millionaire donors to be able to exploit other peoples’ dire life circumstances to get the work they need done as cheaply as possible to maximize profits. Where is all the lofty rhetoric about saving the lives of these asylum seekers or validating the humanity of refugees? These people, these human beings, are no more than disposable commodities to them which is why there has been almost no mention of the thousands of immigrants who have died on their journey into this country the past two years. Are those acceptable loses as long as enough workers made it into the country to start picking lettuce and strawberries? Isn’t that the calculation the slave traders made – the acceptable number of slaves that would die on the voyage to America against the numbers who would make it to be sold off to work in the fields?
21st century people, who have never done a day of hard labor in their lives, love to look back while eating strawberries picked by the hand of an illegal immigrant for $2 per day, and post scathing judgements on their iPhones that were assembled by 9-year-old girls in sweatshops, about the immorality of people who lived 200 years ago, who never knew electricity or indoor plumbing or air conditioning or an automobile or any of the hundreds of modern labor saving machines that we take for granted, and pretend that they would have behaved differently in the exact same life circumstances than the people they are condemning did. If they really would have rejected slavery, where are the boycotts of Nike and Apple for using slave and child labor? Where are the boycotts of the avocados and the strawberries and the lettuce that are picked cheaply by illegal immigrants? There are none because these virtue-signalers don’t want the prices of their consumer goods to double. They don’t want to pay $10 for a pound of strawberries or $4 for an avocado or $500 for a pair of Nikes. So, they turn a blind eye to the modern-day slavery that they benefit from and virtue signal about the slavery that ended 160 years ago because real virtue takes too much sacrifice and costs too much, so they can only gain their virtue through a cross generational condemnation of people whose lives they could not even comprehend.
Judd Garrett is a graduate from Princeton University, and a former NFL player, coach, and executive. He has been a contributor to the website Real Clear Politics. He has recently published his first novel, No Wind.