Thursday, October 13, 2011

What A Tragedy: Jobs For The Unemployed

This October 12, 2011 Reuters news story reports that Alabama's weird law requiring people to actually, you know, be legally in the country, is having shocking, shocking effects:

Jerry Spencer, who founded Birmingham-based Grow Alabama, which works to distribute locally grown food from a network of more than 200 independent farmers, estimates tens of thousands of Hispanic farm workers have fled.
Spencer said the majority of those workers were undocumented, but some legal workers also moved away to avoid the "hassle" the law has created for them, leaving tomato and sweet potato farmers short-handed in the midst of harvest.
"What we've got left is about 10 percent of who was there," he said.
To help farmers cope, Spencer has been rounding up unemployed laborers willing to work the fields. He said those efforts in Birmingham have attracted a lot of interest, but the shift in group dynamics is creating problems in some spots.
"There's a fair amount of reticence on the part of farmers to take the city folk and unemployed workers," Spencer said.
 So, it isn't that illegal aliens are doing "jobs that Americans won't do" but that farmers don't want Americans working in the fields.  The farmers like to see it as the illegal aliens have "inherent respect and honor" for the oldest worker; I would wonder if this might actually be that illegal aliens are docile laborers out of fear of being turned in to la migra.

Americans are out of work--and the Obama Administration is doing its best to make sure that illegal immigrants continue to work at jobs that American citizens and legal immigrants could be doing.

1 comment:

Scott said...

Megan Mcardle had a similar post about this a few months back with a different conclusion. It's not just that the "inherent respect and honor" but they're probably better pickers because they do it more often. I'm not saying I disagree with kicking them out but it will probably take a few years for the market to stabilize and the local people to effectively pick up the slack.