Former journalist and public policy expert Roy Beck reports the World Bank has provided some interesting insights regarding the world’s population.
It is estimated that 180 million people worldwide live in a country other than their birth nation. Immigration is a significant factor in shaping our world. Every year since 1990, America has taken in one million immigrants.
The World Bank lists countries and regions in which people live on less that $2 per day in this order.
In Africa, 650,000,000, India 890,000,000, China 480,000,000, Asia 810,000,000, and Latin America 105,000,000 people live on less than $2 per day. That is over 3 billion people.
Mexico tends to define countries with low incomes. 2.6 billion people live in countries with an annual income less than Mexico. Add that 2.6 billion to the 3 billion with an income of less than $2 per day and that is 5.6 billion people with a daily income less than Mexico.
Last year, the impoverished countries added 80 million new impoverished people to their population and we took in 1 million. Every year we take in 1 million and they add 80 million. Immigration can never reconcile these figures.
Our immigration program does not take in the least educated and poorest. The opposite is true. When we take in immigrants we are removing them from a country where they are among those who are best able to help improve their country. Our immigration program hurts other countries while weakening our own physical and social structure.
The only way to help world poverty is to do it where the people are, within their own countries. Bringing their most energetic and intellectual citizens here hurts our country and theirs.
True, some immigrants make a positive impact on our culture. Their presence has benefitted America and their contribution should not be denied. Others have joined our work force and contributed significantly.
However, it is the horde of illegal immigrants that are draining our nation of vital jobs and resources. These are they who have learned how to “work the system” and live off our government.
Most of our immigrants come from Mexico. Their government has even distributed materials and conducted classes in how to utilize services provided by our government. A significant sidebar to this is the conversation circulating in Washington and the Vatican. Our president is to meet with the pope on March 27. The White House issued this statement. “The president looks forward to discussing with Pope Francis their shared commitment to fighting poverty and growing inequality.”
Another way of saying that is redistribution of the wealth. Defined, that is socialism.
For years compassion and common sense have grappled over the subject to be discussed in Rome. If all people were given the same amount of money and left free to manage it, inequality would result in short order. Character, capacity, and work ethic would inevitably result in those who don’t have those traits losing their wealth and those with those traits increasing theirs.
Generosity in helping persons in need is admirable and to be encouraged. However, Jesus said it well, “The poor you have with you always.”
The Rev. Dr. Nelson Price is pastor emeritus of Roswell Street Baptist Church.