ILW.COM - the immigration portal Immigration Daily

Home Page

Advanced search

Immigration Daily


Processing times

Immigration forms

Discussion board



Twitter feed

Immigrant Nation


CLE Workshops

Immigration books

Advertise on ILW

VIP Network


Chinese Immig. Daily


Connect to us

Make us Homepage



The leading
immigration law
publisher - over
50000 pages of free

Immigration LLC.

< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

ILW.COM Web Hosting

< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily                        < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Congressional Record: June 7, 2001 (House)]
[Page H2990-H2994]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access []

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 3, 2001, the gentleman from Colorado (Mr. Tancredo) is 
recognized for 60 minutes.
  Mr. TANCREDO. Mr. Speaker, once more, I rise to the podium to discuss 
an issue I think is of significant importance to the United States. I 
believe, as a matter of fact, it is perhaps the most significant public 
policy issue with which this body could or should be dealing. It is the 
issue of immigration reform.
  Each evening at the end of business in this House, ladies and 
gentlemen from both sides of the aisle approach the mike to talk about 
particular issues of interest and concern to themselves. And each 
evening for the last several, Members, especially from the California 
delegation, have come to the microphone to talk about the problems that 
they face in that State as a result of a lack of sufficient energy 
resources. And each evening, they rail against the President's 
policies, the energy plan that he has put forward, the first such plan 
ever put forward by any administration, and suggest that the problems 
we face in this Nation with regard to energy are those that can be 
dealt with more by conservation than by production.
  But all of the debate, Mr. Speaker, about energy problems, whether 
they concentrate on the issue of production as a solution or the 
possibility of conservation as a solution, miss the underlying problem.
  The fact is, Mr. Speaker, the rolling blackouts we see in California 
and now some places beyond the borders of California, the skyrocketing 
costs of fuel oil, the fact that as we approach summer people are 
concerned about whether they are going to be able to keep their homes 
cool and in the wintertime whether they are going to be able to keep 
their homes warm because of the cost of energy. All of these things 
really are a result of a phenomenon I refer to as the numbers. It is 
numbers. It is the number of people in this country demanding the 
various resources that are available to them, but at varying costs.

[[Page H2991]]

  Every year, Mr. Speaker, we allow legally into this country 1 million 
people under an immigrant status. Each year, we allow in another 
quarter of a million people under what is called refugee status. And 
each year, we have about 2 million to 3 million, the estimates vary 
widely of course, naturally, 2 million to 3 million illegal people 
coming across the borders and staying. We have far more coming across 
the borders, something like 800,000 a day, coming across the border; 
but I am saying that just those that we net out every year amounts to 2 
million or 3 million.
  I have a chart, Mr. Speaker, actually two charts, if I could ask a 
page to set them up, that show the growth of the population of this 
Nation over the last 20 years or so. We just had the census and the 
headlines across the Nation scream out, population growth 
extraordinary, more than we have anticipated, more than could have been 
anticipated, more than was expected. And we sometimes wonder how this 
could have happened; how it could happen that the numbers of people 
could actually grow so rapidly.
  This, Mr. Speaker, is a chart that describes what has happened from 
1970 when the population was about 203 million and the growth in 
population identified here in green that could be attributable to what 
we would call the native-born population, or specifically, the baby 
boomers. As we can see, the population growth was increasing, has 
increased, just the natural population growth, since 1970; and there 
has been a lot of concern about that.
  However, the population would, in fact, level off, the population 
growth that is identified by this Baby Boomer Echo, as is shown here in 
green, that would level off in about 2020, and we would actually begin 
a decrease in population growth. That does not mean a decrease in 
population, just that the trend line is going down, were it not for the 
fact that we have an immigrant population that has actually doubled the 
size of growth in the United States, the rate of growth. So we would be 
right now at 243 million people in the United States, had it not been 
for immigration over the past 30 years. We are at 281 million people in 
the United States as a result of it; we have actually doubled the 
growth rate.
  Now, this is intriguing, the numbers are interesting, and we can 
discuss what the implications are; but the fact is, we will be in a 
relatively short time, at a point where our resources will be stretched 
to the limit. We are not able to actually accommodate the population 
growth of this Nation with the resource allocation and with the problem 
of environmental protections that we perhaps rightly, perhaps blindly 
place on the actual development of our natural resources. For whatever 
reason, we cannot produce enough to supply the demand of the population 
we have in the United States in terms of energy. So when people from 
California rail against whatever political party is in power, either at 
the State or at the national level, and suggest that that is the 
problem, that we would all have lots and lots of fuel oil, gasoline, 
energy supplies if it only were not for some particular problem with 
the political philosophy of one party or the other.
  Mr. Speaker, it has nothing to do with that. It has everything to do 
with the fact that both political parties refuse to deal with the real 
problems we face in America today brought on by this enormous growth in 
population, and that specifically, that growth in population, that part 
of it that is brought on by immigration.

                              {time}  1515

  For many years, Mr. Speaker, we have had, of course, immigration in 
the United States of America. It is a country of immigrants. We all 
came here as a result of someone's decision at some point in time to 
leave their country and to come to the United States.
  I am quite sympathetic with all those people, who still today are 
hardworking, God-fearing, law-abiding in every other way except they 
will come across the border illegally.
  For the most part, these people are people who have all of the 
intentions, all of the desires to become part of the American dream, to 
obtain a part of the American dream, that our grandparents had. I 
certainly do not blame them for coming. I do not blame them for trying 
to come across the border legally, or sometimes illegally. I would not 
doubt for a moment that if I were living in some of their 
circumstances, I would be trying to do exactly the same thing.
  So it is not the immigrant, the individual immigrant, that I am 
concerned about here or that I am in any way trying to degrade. It is 
our own policy, it is the policy of this Nation with regard to 
immigration. It is the head-in-the-sand policy, we should call it, with 
regard to immigration that I am concerned about. It is a refusal on the 
part of the Nation to deal with the fact of the numbers.
  It is the numbers. It is not where people are coming from, it is how 
many people are coming here that has an impact on the quality of life 
in the United States. We are witnessing it in California on sort of a 
major scale, but every one of us, I believe, throughout our districts 
can observe the effects of immigration, and I would suggest to the 
Members, the negative effects of it, depending on who we are in the 
  If one is an employer desirous of obtaining the cheapest labor 
possible, desirous of paying people even below minimum wage, desirous 
of having people who would never think about perhaps filing a claim or 
something like that, then they are on the other side of this issue. 
They are happy about massive immigration, public or private, because 
they can take advantage of it. They take advantage of those people 
coming in asking for help, needing a job, doing anything for a job and 
fearful of causing a problem in any way, because, of course, they may 
find the INS at their door.
  However, the possibility of that is quite remote. We actually deport 
only 1 percent of the illegals that enter the country every year, 1 
percent. So as I say, they should not really be too concerned. But if 
they make waves, then they might end up being identified by the INS. 
Maybe somebody would place a call. Why? Because they have had the 
audacity to ask for a minimum wage job, or that their benefits be 
increased, but they are here illegally. We take advantage of them. They 
are manipulated. They are exploited by greed.
  So if they are on that side of the equation, I can understand full 
well, Mr. Speaker, that those people would not be too excited about the 
possibility of reducing the levels of immigrants into this country to 
something that we can handle, something that can allow immigrants to 
actually prosper themselves, and allow the United States to prosper 
itself. It could be mutually beneficial.
  We need to reduce immigration dramatically, but as I say, it is just 
not a Californian who has a concern about this. Every single one of us 
sees something happening in his or her district that is a result of 
  In Colorado, I see it all the time. We see the demand for more and 
more highways, the demand for more and more schools. We keep wondering, 
where are these people coming from? How is it that this demand is 
growing so dramatically? It is a result, of course, of massive 
immigration, both legal and illegal. We will begin to see much more of 
its effects as time goes by if we do not do something about it.
  Mr. Speaker, I showed the Members a chart a little bit ago that 
identified this part of the growth of this Nation from 1970 to 2000. We 
see again that 243 million would have been the population of the Nation 
had we in fact not had immigration in the last 30 years, but with 
immigration, we have more. Remember, we are just talking here about 
legal immigrants. We do not know how many illegal immigrants. We assume 
10 to 15 million people here in the country are here illegally.
  But our country at the end of 2000 was at 281 million people, so that 
part was the result of immigration, as I say, doubling the actual 
growth rate normally.
  I ask Members to look what happens, look what happens if this growth 
rate is allowed to continue at the present level of 1 million legal 
immigrants in here. This does not reflect illegal immigration, which of 
course is about double, at least double legal immigration.
  This just looks at what would happen, what is going to happen. This 
is not hypothetical, this is not a maybe thing; this is a direct, an 
absolutely defensible explanation, a visible explanation, of what is 
going to happen in

[[Page H2992]]

this country within the rest of this century, even in the next 30 
years, if we continue to have immigration levels at the present level. 
We will be, at 2050, at 404 million, and we will be at 571 million 
people in the country at 2100.

  Think about that when we are looking at where we are way down here. 
Think about the taxes that we have to pay in order to support the 
infrastructural demands of a population increase of this nature. Think 
about the number of schools that have to be built to support this. 
Think about the number of highways. Think about the number of 
hospitals. Think about the social service demands.
  This population actually uses social services to a greater extent 
than the indigenous population. Think about this, just this. If nothing 
else will impress the Members, think about the quality of life at this 
level, at 571 million people in this country. Think about that little 
green belt that is not too far from our houses today.
  Think about the fact that maybe today we can get in the car and 
within an hour or so we can be out in the more pristine areas enjoying 
the beauty of nature. Think about the ability of going to the 
Yellowstone National Park or Rocky Mountain National Park in my State, 
but think about having to make reservations to do that 4 or 5 years in 
advance to get into a national park.
  This is what is coming, I assure the Members, and it will not be in 
the next 100 years, that will be in the next few years. We are already 
planning on how to try to deal with the massive numbers of people 
coming into the park systems of the United States without destroying 
them, destroying the ecology. There is only one way to do it, of 
course, and that is to parcel it out.
  So today when we can get in our car and in fact drive freely across 
the United States, we can go into areas where it is hard to see another 
person, and that is sometimes what we all would desire, that kind of 
great quiet and solitude, think about it, Mr. Speaker, when the country 
is at this level of population, it will not be a place where solitude 
will easily be found. It will not be a place where one could enjoy the 
beauty of nature by simply getting in our vehicles or taking a stroll 
for a while, getting out of town, away from it all. It will be much 
more difficult to get away from it all because it will all have come 
here. It will all be here because of massive immigration, both legal 
and illegal.
  Again, I want to reestablish something here. When we look at this 
incredible chart and we look at what is going to happen to the 
population of the United States because of the red part here, please 
remember this, this is not talking about illegal immigrants who stay 
here, this is just from legal immigration at the present level. Can 
anybody understand the implication of this? Does anybody want to deal 
with it?
  Do Members think we have rolling blackouts now in California, rolling 
brownouts? Well, we are going to have a much more significant problem 
then when the population reaches these levels, and it will be, of 
course, much higher because illegal immigration rates are far greater 
than the legal.
  Yes, then we will come here to the floor of the House and we will 
talk about maybe having to do something about immigration. We cannot 
sustain it at these levels, we will say. Maybe we will say that. I do 
not know. But why not say it today, Mr. Speaker? Why are we so afraid 
of bringing this issue to the attention of our colleagues here and to 
the attention of the general public?
  There are a couple of reasons, but primarily they deal with fear, 
fear of being called a racist, fear of being called xenophobic, and a 
variety of other terms that certainly I have thrown at me every time I 
do this speech on the floor of the House. The phones start ringing in 
our office. People from all over the country express their displeasure 
with what I say.

  Mr. Speaker, I will suffer the slings and arrows of those folks who 
feel so outraged by what I am saying here just to get people to begin 
to pay attention to the issue.
  I want to read a part of a letter that is dated March 19, 1924. The 
letter is addressed to the Congress of the United States, and it reads 
as follows:
  ``Every effort to enact immigration legislation must expect to meet a 
number of hostile forces, and in particular, two hostile forces of 
considerable strength.''
  It goes on: ``One of these is composed of corporation employers who 
desire to employ physical strength, `broad backs,' at the lowest 
possible wage, and who prefer a rapidly revolving labor supply at low 
wages to a regular supply of American wage earners at fair wages.''
  Remember, this is 1924. It goes on:
  ``The other hostile force is composed of racial groups in the United 
States who oppose all restrictive legislation because they want the 
doors left open for an influx of their countrymen, regardless of the 
menace to the people of their adopted country.''
  This was Samuel Gompers, founder and president of the American 
Federation of Labor, the AFL, and himself, by the way, an immigrant.
  He is right, Mr. Speaker, it has not changed. It has not changed, I 
assure the Members, in the last 76 years. It is still those hostile 
forces we meet when we bring an issue like this to the floor. It is 
still the employer who threatens me, threatens other Members of this 
body with a lack of support if we do not understand that they need to 
bring in illegal and legal immigrants so they can have these jobs that 
``no American will take.''
  Yes, I am sure there are many jobs out there that no American will 
take for the wages that are paid at that level. Yes, I am sure that is 
true. As long as they can continue to get by with paying those low 
wages to those people, of course they are going to be coming here 
demanding that we do nothing about the massive immigration that is 
flooding the United States, that is coming across the borders; and I 
should say, by the way, also to the detriment of the immigrant.
  The other thing, of course, is that there is a political side to 
this. There are a lot of people here who want to have massive 
immigration because they believe it accrues to their political 
advantage. We saw this, Mr. Speaker, we will recall, when President 
Clinton demanded that the INS go through a hurry-up procedure in order 
to make citizens out of hundreds of thousands of people who were here 
as immigrants, in order to get them registered to vote, in order for 
them to become good Democrats and vote for Mr. Clinton.
  There was such a rush to do that that literally thousands, I read 
somewhere it was 69,000 that sticks in my mind, people who were given 
this citizenship in this rushed-up fashion who were in fact felons. 
They had committed felonies here and they had committed felonies in 
their country of origin. We gave them citizenship status because the 
Clinton administration wanted a massive number of people here because 
they believed that they would in turn become good, solid Democrat 
  Mr. Speaker, I do not care whether they come here and vote Democrat 
or Republican or do not vote at all. The fact is, the issue of numbers 
is what we have to deal with today, the numbers. Because of 
immigration, the United States is currently growing at a rate faster 
than China. Because of immigration, within the lifetime of an American 
child our population will double.

                              {time}  1530

  There is an organization called Project U.S.A., from which I am 
taking much of the following information, and I suggest that anyone who 
wants to get any kind of information that we have talked about here 
tonight go to our Website, From that, we have 
links to any of these other sites. That is Then 
one can go to the other sites here, Project U.S.A. and many others. Go 
to our site on immigration reform first.
  A writer by the name of Brenda Walker talks about the social 
contract, talks about what happens again in terms of what the impacts 
are of massive immigration into the country.
  She says experts increasingly agree that Third World poverty is 
largely the result of generations of citizens' passivity and the 
failure to build governments based on democratic values. Democracy 
cannot survive in cultures where women have no rights, where there is 
little respect for the rule of law, where there is tolerance for 
bigotry, petty thievery, bribery, corruption, nepotism, ethnic 
hostility and

[[Page H2993]]

where citizens fail to build the political coalitions and the citizen 
movements to effect real change.
  She says, when we reward those who run from the problems in their own 
native land in order to save their own skin, then we undermine the 
citizen activism and the loyalty to one another that is absolutely 
necessary if Third World people are going to unite and solve their own 
  It is not kindness on our part when we allow our corporations to 
employ their most educated and their most talented citizens. Where 
would South Africa be if Nelson Mandela had decided to cut and run for 
  Encouraging massive migration to the United States will not solve the 
problems in poorer countries. We can be much more effective through 
foreign aid and by teaching people how to build democratic societies 
for themselves. Teaching people how to fish is the path to true 
compassion and human dignity.
  Consider this, no one can fail to notice the connection between 
poverty and rapid population growth. No one can fail to see the 
connection between population growth and the degradation of the global 
  For our sake and for the sake of the world, we must work for a U.S. 
immigration moratorium. Certainly appropriate words.
  Today, Mr. Speaker, my wife brought me a copy of the most recent 
issue of Time Magazine. It is a Time Special Issue, it says, identified 
by the June 11 date. It says, ``Welcome to Amexica,'' A-M-E-X-I-C-A. 
The subtitle is ``The border is vanishing before our eyes, creating a 
new world for all of us.''
  I could not agree more, Mr. Speaker, with that headline. The border 
is vanishing. A new world is being created. What does this world look 
like? Well, it will look very much like the border that presently 
exists between the United States and Mexico, the border region referred 
to in this particular Time Magazine article.
  This is from Time Magazine: ``To enforce immigration policies over 
which they have no control, border counties lay out $108 million a year 
in law enforcement and medical expenses associated with illegal 
crossings, money most of these poor counties cannot afford. Yes, there 
is a shortage of truck drivers, but there is also a shortage of judges 
to hear all the drug and smuggling cases. Arizona ambulance companies 
face bankruptcy because of all the unreimbursed costs of rescuing 
illegals from the desert. Schools everywhere here are poor, overcrowded 
and growing.
  ``Good health care has always been scarce here, but the border boom 
makes it worse. A third of all U.S. tuberculosis cases are concentrated 
in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. In the El Paso hospitals, 
50 percent of the patients are on some kind of public assistance, 
mainly Medicaid.''
  `` `Border towns have the double burden of disease,' says Russell 
Bennett, chief of the U.S.-Mexico Border Health Commission,'' those 
diseases of emerging nations like diarrhea as well as first world 
diseases like stress and diabetes.
  The cost of immigration, I mean, the world is definitely changing, 
Mr. Speaker. There are no two ways about it. But I would not suggest it 
is changing especially on these border communities for the better, and 
it is because of numbers. It is not because, again, of where people 
come from. It is because of the numbers of people that are coming here.
  Again, I repeat, 31 percent of all tuberculosis cases are found in 
the four border States. Colorado, by the way, is not too far behind in 
those statistics.
  We are told that other countries are doing something to try to stem 
the flow of migrants to the United States. Well, let me suggest to my 
colleagues that that is almost a hollow promise.
  Although Vicente Fox and others often speak of attempting to do 
something to reduce the flow of immigrants to the United States, the 
reality is that they are encouraging it. The reason why they are 
encouraging this out-migration from their countries is because they 
cannot deal with it. They refuse to deal with it.

  Remember the petty larceny, the incredible amount of problems they 
have in trying to actually run their own government, the massive amount 
of corruption in the government itself and in the policing? All of 
this, of course, does not bode well for us, for those of us who hope 
that Mexico will be able to turn this around, to provide an economic 
arena in which their own people can thrive, in which they can achieve 
their own economic dreams. This is what we hope for all citizens all 
over the world.
  But I suggest that it is counterproductive for the United States to 
accept so many legal and illegal people into our country based upon 
some bizarre rationale that we are actually helping them and we are 
helping the countries from which they come. We are doing neither. We 
are doing ourselves an injustice and we are doing an injustice to the 
nations from which these people come because we are allowing these 
countries to avoid dealing with the harsh reality of life; and that is, 
one better change one's system, one better become a more free 
enterprise, capitalistic system, understanding the benefits of a 
democratic republic based upon capitalism. That is the first thing one 
has to do.
  One has to work to root out corruption in one's own government. One 
has to make sure that the police are honest, that the civil service at 
every level are not on the take.
  But the fact is, Mr. Speaker, that in most of these Third World 
countries, that is just exactly what the case is. Most of these is 
incredibly corrupt and, as a result, of course they cannot provide 
governmental services as a result of socialistic economies. They cannot 
provide their own people with the quality of life that they deserve.
  So what happens? They look for someplace to go, and that place to go 
is the United States of America. We can handle it. We can handle maybe 
100,000 a year. We can handle maybe 150,000 a year. We can handle maybe 
200,000 a year. But we cannot handle millions and millions of people a 
year. It does not help us, and it does not help them.
  Vicente Fox ``dreams of a day when the border will open and his 
countrymen will no longer flee to survive. As Fox told Ernesto Ruffo, 
his top aide on the region, `Put holes in the border.' '' That is his 
attempt to stop illegal immigrants from entering the United States. Put 
holes in the border. What does Mr. Fox mean by that? Believe me, it 
would be difficult to find where one could put the hole, because there 
is essentially an open border.
  There is hardly anything that prevents the flow of illegals into this 
country from his country. Not only is Mr. Fox not attempting to stop 
it, but he and his government are abetting it. They are actually, as 
hard as this is to believe, Mr. Speaker, even in light of what Mr. Fox 
is telling the rest of the world, they are, in turn, handing out kits 
to illegals preparing to cross the border into the United States, kits 
that are designed to help them make their trip easier, kits that 
include water and condoms and Band-aids and maps and food supplies for 
a day or so. They are being handed out by agencies of the Mexican 
  At the same time, they tell us that they are trying to help reduce 
the flow of immigrants into the United States. This is simply untrue, 
Mr. Speaker.
  There is the corruption. This article in Time Magazine goes on to 
talk about the corruption and how it affects the immigration policies. 
It says, ``Police and Customs people pay for their government jobs so 
they can get in on the mordida, the payoff system. Midwives in 
Brownsville have sold thousands of birth certificates to be used as 
proof of U.S. citizenship. The Arellano Felix brothers, Tijuana drug 
kingpins known for torturing, carving up and roasting their rivals, are 
paying $4 million a month in bribes in Baja, California alone, just as 
the cost of doing business.''
  Remember, Mr. Speaker, we are talking about corrupt officials both in 
Mexico and in the United States. $4 million a month in bribes in Baja, 
California alone.
  ``The $4 million reward for their capture is one of the highest the 
U.S. has ever offered, and is something of a bad joke under the 
circumstances. There hasn't been a single nibble in four years. What 
good is the money if you're dead?'' The article goes on.
  ``The border patrol has a mission impossible. No matter how many 
surveillance cameras and motion detectors it installs, still the 
immigrants come.'' It goes on to describe the plight of those who cross 
the border and do so in the

[[Page H2994]]

heat of the day without proper care, without proper nutrition, without 
the ability to escape the burning rays of the sun. Many, many die in 
the process.
  Those who do not come that way often employ the services of what are 
called coyotes. A coyote is a person who is employed to get one from 
Mexico to the United States doing so illegally. One has to pay them. It 
averages between 500 to sometimes several thousand dollars, depending 
upon the circumstances, to get one across the border.
  What happens, these people get shoved into vans, into the backs of 
trucks, get compacted, if you will, into any vehicle that is coming 
across the border. Many of them die. This has happened several times in 
the last few months in my own State of Colorado. I think we are up to 
now 9 or 11 people who have died in this process being transported here 
by coyotes.
  Again, Mr. Speaker, I do not blame them for trying. I understand 
their desire. It was the same as the desire of my grandparents and 
perhaps my colleagues to come to the United States and seek a better 
life. One of the things that we accomplished with that generation was, 
to a large extent, the ability to separate oneself from the culture and 
from the country from which one came. This is important. This is one 
reason why we do have the problem with massive migration, both legal 
and illegal from Mexico, because the border is of course adjacent to 
the United States, and it is harder.
  When my grandparents came here from Italy in the late part of the 
1800s, they came essentially to escape an old world, came to seek the 
benefits of the new world, to enter into what they believe was a place 
of streets of gold. They wanted to become upwardly mobile, and they did 
that. One of the ways they did it was by abandoning their native 
  I know a lot of people suggest that should not happen. I, for one, 
wish I could still speak Italian. I wish my grandparents had taught my 
parents and they had taught me, but they did not. One reason they did 
not was because they understood the need to learn English if they 
wanted to be upwardly mobile in this country.
  Massive immigration from countries that do not speak English puts 
pressure on the school systems. It puts pressure on jobs. The ability 
of someone to be upwardly mobile is severely hampered by their either 
unwillingness or inability to learn the English language.
  Bilingual education now being taught in so many schools with the 
exception of California, which by proposition threw it out, and soon it 
will happen in Arizona if it has not already occurred. I may be 
mistaken there. I think Arizona has already passed their initiative to 
do the same thing, and I hope Colorado is next in line to eliminate 
bilingual education. But this is an example of the problem of massive 
immigration and this dual-language nation we are beginning to develop.
  Not only is there a problem with people being able to actually become 
upwardly mobile if they do not speak English, can they really get to 
the next level in their job, can they afford to leave that particular 
field, maybe low skilled, low pay job, and move into something better 
if they cannot speak English? The answer is no.

                              {time}  1545

  So why do we keep so many people in another language? Because it has 
become a political issue. I go back to what I said earlier about the 
reasons why we have massive immigration, one of them being political. 
And bilingual education has become a very political issue. It is used 
here in the House of this Congress to encourage either certain ethnic 
groups to support one party or another, or as an issue of attack on 
another party, those of us who believe that bilingual education is not 
the best thing for the children in that system.
  If we really and truly care about the child, Mr. Speaker, and I have 
been a teacher, my wife just completed 27 years as a teacher in the 
Jefferson County Public Schools, we sent our children to public 
schools, but if we really and truly care about children, then we will 
do several things for them: one, we will allow them to have the choice 
of any school they want to go to by giving them tax credits; and, 
secondly, we will make sure that they are not forced to participate in 
bilingual classes that are taught in a language other than English. If 
we really care about children, that is where we should be.
  We should be providing immersion classes for these kids so they can 
learn English quickly and move on and get in line for part of the 
American Dream. But massive immigration retards that pressure to 
achieve English proficiency. But the fact remains that these are all 
problems that develop as a result of this massive immigration and 
problems that we must begin to deal with.
  I say over and over again that it is an issue whose time has come. We 
must talk about it. Do we want this to be the future? Is this what we 
expect our children and grandchildren will have to deal with in terms 
of the quality of their lives? We can achieve a better future, Mr. 
Speaker, by controlling our own borders. It is uniquely in the power of 
the people of this House and in this other body to do that. States 
cannot do it. States have absolutely no control over the borders. They 
look to us. And we look away all too often, and we have done so time 
and time again on this issue of immigration because we fear either the 
political or social ramifications to us.
  It is hard to go into that cocktail party where somebody may say, oh, 
gee, that is that guy or that lady that wants to reduce immigration. 
People might shy away from you, thinking that you are a racist, that 
you have some evil motive, that there is something bad in your heart, 
and they want to get away from you. Mr. Speaker, I assure you, at least 
from my own perspective and from the bottom of my heart, it is not the 
type of people that come here, it is not the color of people that are 
coming here, it is not their ethnicity, it is, in fact, the numbers 
that makes it difficult to deal with.
  The numbers make it harder for us all to accomplish our goals, 
whether it is to reduce the problems faced by California, and which 
will be faced by States throughout the Nation soon in terms of energy 
and lack thereof, to the various other kinds of cultural issues and 
political issues that we face as a result of massive immigration of 
these kinds of numbers.
  So once again I ask the Speaker to be aware of the need for change, 
to encourage others, others of my colleagues, to begin to study this 
issue and become acquainted with it. It is an important one for every 
one of us no matter what district we represent. It will become more 
important as the time goes on, and there will be a point in time when 
we will be confronted by this issue in a way that perhaps we have no 
way of avoiding it.
  We have to deal with it, Mr. Speaker. Now is better than later. Now 
is better than later.


Share this page with a friend Share this page