Monday, November 10, 2003

Rolling Back Wages: Some of the illegal immigrants who were arrested while working at Wal-Mart are suing the company for discrimination. They say the company offered them lower wages and fewer benefits because they were nonresidents.

This suit will involve some tricky legal play considering that the immigrants unlawfully entered this country and weren't legally allowed to work for Wal-Mart. But I support them on their lawsuit. Many companies, organizations, farms, etc. actively discriminate against illegal immigrants because the workers usually cannot publicly complain, or risk being deported.

Now, I know that many immigrants follow the rules and come into this country legally, but that doesn't excuse mistreatment of any workers here. Most of the people risking their lives to cross the border don't want to live on welfare or engage in terrorist plots. Whenever I ask an immigrant why he or she came to the U.S., I always get the same answer: "work".

Those immigrants are the hardest workers, living in the poorest conditions, taking the most menial jobs -- and they usually send most of their wages to their families at home. These people aren't taking jobs away from anybody. They fill the jobs nobody else wants -- working as migrant farmers and the like.

Now if Wal-Mart exploited these people and then watched them get arrested, the company should be held legally responsible.


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