I don’t see what the big deal about the illegal immigration along the US-Mexico border is. The way I see it, the immigrants aren’t the problem, it’s the people – US citizens – who hire them.
It’s all economics. After all, you don’t see Canadians sneaking across the border, do you?
The whole problem would go away if they just did a few simple things.
1. Allow legal immigration for those who want it. Issue ID cards, with fingerprints, photo, biometrics, background checks, whatever it takes to make them hard to forge. Require a job and a residence be kept on file to keep the card and legal status. Make it easier to enter legally than to sneak in.
2. Issue a social security number and collect social security taxes and income taxes. In exchange guarantee a legal minimum wage, just like a citizen.
I think after that, the employers who hire, no exploit, the illegals by paying them less than the minimum wage would stop hiring them. With no jobs, there would be no incentive to sneak across the border.
Paying at least minimum wage and collecting taxes would offset the social costs of the illegals. They could get basic emergency health care and their kids could go to school. It may not pay for it all, but it would be a step in the right direction and be better than getting nothing.
Let’s face it, we’re a nation of immigrants. Unless you’re Native American, your ancestors came here at some point as immigrants.