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Linking legality with immigration

June 12, 2007

Re "Enforcement before amnesty," Opinion, June 9

When you sift through all the verbiage, David Frum's formula for a successful immigration policy seems to boil down to this: Boot out the low-skilled immigrants performing the lower-paying jobs and import highly skilled immigrants to take the higher-paying positions, leaving Americans to mow lawns, flip burgers, clean homes and wash cars for minimum wage. I wonder if this is what the 70% of Americans who he suggests support his views had in mind.

TOM WALKER

Costa Mesa

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Why can't our representatives view the immigration dilemma as succinctly, directly and honestly as Frum? The concept of "illegal" must be the point from which any attempt at control begins. It has gotten to the point that these masses of illegals are making demands that they have no right to. Many do not want to learn English; many do want to access our social services, schools and medical care. They show little, if any, allegiance to the United States and its laws.

Coming here for a better life is what this country stands for, but in return, contributing their talents to make the country better should be the goal of immigrants. The exploitation must be dealt with sooner rather than later.

LORRAINE B. KIRK

Rancho Palos Verdes

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Frum's article is predicated on the flawed assumption that the 12-million-plus illegal immigrants in the U.S. can be voluntarily induced to return home. This assumption is not based in reality, and even if it were possible, it would result in catastrophic economic consequences for the U.S. and Mexico.

Rather, what is needed is less emotional rhetoric and more real-world solutions to real-world problems through practical, comprehensive immigration reform based on economic realities, not a wholesale rewriting of our immigration laws as was proposed in the Senate, or Frum's enforcement-only approach.

ELI KANTOR

Beverly Hills

The writer is an attorney with the American Immigration Lawyers Assn.

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Frum exemplifies what has gone wrong with the conservative movement. He idealistically claims that illegal immigration should be stemmed on the basis of illegality.

He doesn't recognize the sad reality that we have our immigration problem because powerful corporate interests demand the cheap labor illegal immigrants provide. These corporate interests hold the election campaign purse strings for many conservative politicians, and as long as Frum and other conservative insiders turn a blind eye to that glaring and ugly truth, illegal immigration will persist.

CHRISTIAN BREIDING

Glendale

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