Give us your tired, poor, but please do it legally – Richard Merkt

(image taken from Merkt’s website)

Give us your tired, poor, but please do it legally – Richard Merkt (NJ)

In today’s Daily Record New Jersey Assemblyman Richard A. Merkt (R) (NJ) wrote a rebuttal to last week’s article on the DREAM Act. In his op-ed he stated that the student featured in the article received a free education. If education is paid for through property taxes then I hardly believe this child received a free education. Mr. Merkt also stated that undocumented migrants are taking citizenship opportunities from legal immigrants; however, as far as I know there has been no reduction to immigration due to undocumented immigration. So what is Mr. Merkt talking about?

He stated:

This youngster already has received a free public education paid for by New Jersey taxpayers solely by virtue of his parents having broken our nation’s laws. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of children of would-be lawful immigrants have been denied that same privilege, just because their parents did not break the law and jump the line. Tell me, is that fair?

But we don’t get to see their photographs in the Daily Record, now do we? Nor does the Daily Record ever write about, or even acknowledge, the fundamental inequity of some folks being denied the ability to migrate to our country legally, while others simply ignore our laws and profit immensely from their misconduct.

I believe he’s just giving out misinformation since he’s co-sponsoring a bill that would bar undocumented immigrants from even attending college in New Jersey.

Another bit of mis-information Mr. Merkt gives is stating that undocumented migrants have access to all free public services.

The reality is, this individual is still not legally present in the United States, yet continues to have the unearned benefit of access to all the free social services this country provides — again, at taxpayer expense.

This assertion is simply untrue and it’s rather scary that a public official would make this comment.

Continuing on we see the humanitarian in Mr. Merkt. He claims that undocumented migrants are ‘exploiting’ our generosity and that’s the only reason they come here. Apparently it’s no bid deal to risk death when there’s free ‘handouts’ waiting for you on the other side.

A second is that such public policy attracts those who violate our laws, because they cannot only get away with breaking the law, but benefit financially from doing so. And then we wonder why illegal aliens are such a growing problem in our country. They are not stupid; they see an opportunity, and they are exploiting it.

Mr. Merkt should understand that migrants have not come here to upset him or to ‘take’ from him or anyone else in New Jersey. Whether Mr. Merkt or anyone else likes it or not we live a big sphere called the Earth. On this sphere there live more than 6 billion people which all need basic things to sustain life and each one of those people has a right to those things. If our government condones and supports policies in other countries that keep their people from accessing the right to a decent life while those same people makes good for us then it only seems reasonable that that those people would want to come here. It has nothing to do with a desire to break the law. 99% of all migrants have no desire to break any laws. However, because of our unjust immigration laws they do.

Merkt ends his op-ed bemoaning a lack of resources. Well the parents of undocumented children are benefiting local economies through work. Through their labor they put money into said economies which means more is available for things like helping college students.

Let’s come up with a sensible approach rather than giving out false information to pander for votes through fear.


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