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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

Immigration Hurts Low-Wage U.S. Workers

August 25, 2004

Re "Black/Migrant Rivalry for Jobs Can Be Eased," Opinion, Aug. 22: David Bacon overlooks two inconvenient facts. The first is that mass immigration depresses the wages of low-skilled American workers, especially blacks and Latinos. Recent studies by the UCLA Chicano Studies Department (2003) and Harvard labor economist George Borjas (2004) support this conclusion.

Second, amnesties only encourage more illegal immigration and a bigger supply of low-skilled workers. When the newly amnestied workers demand better pay, they are fired and replaced by the newcomers, who are hungrier for the work.

Texas Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee's proposed legislation demonstrates how delusional and/or dishonest the Democrats are on immigration. They still want to be the defenders of the working class and they want to pander to Hispanic voters by facilitating more immigration. They can't have it both ways. Even if they get control of the White House and the Congress, they can't repeal the laws of supply and demand.

Minor Collinsworth

Claremont

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Re "3,000 Jobs; 500,000 Seekers," editorial, Aug. 21: You forgot to mention that the applications came from around the world. Your news article in Friday's paper did accurately describe the process. We Americans are not responsible for the lack of jobs in the whole world, although I am sure The Times would like to blame President Bush for that also.

Doris Waterman

Marina del Rey

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Bush keeps saying that we are in an economic recovery and that jobs are plentiful. I have been out of work now for 2 1/2 years. I am well educated and have 20-plus years of experience in my telecommunications field.

I see that 3,000 other telecom people at Nortel are going to join me. I keep seeing our jobs going to Bangalore and Bangladesh. Maybe I will apply for a job at the Port of Long Beach.

Fred Williams

Oceanside

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