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…. And A Migrant Runs Through It

September 11, 2015

I have been living in Italy since 2003. Before entering Italy, my wife and I were required to obtain a visa. Then we were required to obtain a “permesso di sooggiorno” (permit to stay) which needed to be renewed every two years at a cost of over $200 apiece. We also had to stipulate that we were living in Italy of our own will, had sufficient financial resources as not to a burden on the state and that we would not take a job in the country. Such are the prices to be paid if one wants to live in another country.

Having endured this program for nearly a decade and a half, we are baffled at the current migrant problems in Europe. Illegal migrants in Italy are treated royally, given 35 Euro a day to live and are usually provided with a smart phone to boot. Many (not most) refuse to do the legal paperwork or work for a living. We know one man from Nigeria who has been here illegally for 12 years and lives a comfortable life on the backs of the Italian saps who continue to pay his way. Today, the entrances of most supermarkets are lined with people who ask for money because the 35 Euro a day seems not to be enough for them. Apparently cigarettes and very cool clothes cost a bit more.

To be sure there are migrants here in Europe who have arrived legally, obtained their papers, work and contribute to their respective societies. I applaud them. They have done exactly what is required and are usually fine citizens. Like me, they understand that there should not be a free lunch when it comes to migration.

When I voice my concerns over illegal immigration, a friend of mine often tries to compare the current situation to that of our grandfathers. After all, they came to America to escape poverty in Europe. Wrong! My grandfather came to the United States legally, did the required paperwork and immediately found employment. That work was not that of a hedge fund manager but rather of a coal miner at a dollar a day. It was terribly hard work and he was glad to have the job to call his. He did not receive money from the state nor did he panhandle the local populace. He was also required to learn English.

The paramount word to remember is “illegal.” Legal immigration is what has made many countries great. Illegal immigration is what is currently making countries poorer. Today’s illegal migrants feel they have a right to go where they please without restrictions of permits and consent. They expect and often get accommodations that are not allowed to legal migrants. They use a liberal press and their large numbers to bully their way to wherever they want to go and if they don’t receive everything they want, they cry foul. They place the blame for their lot on the very people they are invading.

This year has seen a huge influx of migrants from many countries entering Europe illegally. Italy’s response has been dim-witted at best. The Italian Coast Guard now travels to the Lybian coast to pick-up boat people so as not to have them endangered by the boat trip. Others arrive by the thousands every week in Lampadusa. What to do? Italy’s solution is to send them north to Germany. Frau Merkel of Germany has put out the welcome sign to all illegal immigrants so most don’t bother seeking asylum or residence in other countries. Personally, I would hate to be a working age German whose salary is being whittled away in an ill advised attempt to save the world. Greece shuttles the migrants north to Macedonia who pushes them north to Serbia who puts everyone on a train for Hungary. Hungary has built a fence and is seen as the Trump-esqe villan of the EU. Every corner of Europe is currently being affected.

The super liberal press here in Europe trips over each other in an attempt to chronicle the travels of illegal immigrants. Having watched several of these “mini series,” I always ask the same question: Why is Europe encouraging illegal immigration instead of fostering a legal immigration policy? The state of lawlessness that has ensued is apt to spell the end to a boarderless Europe and possibly usher in the end of the European Union. Why? Like all things in life, someone has to pay for all of this nonsense and here in Europe no one has the cash.

The bottom line is simple truth. Europe can not accept everyone who wants to come here. It is simply not possible. If people want to move to other countries, there are legal means for which to do so. Illegal immigrationn hurts everyone including the migrants themselves. It is also fundamentally unfair to those who have immigrated legally. It is effectively disrupting and killing off tourism and forcing countries to spend millions of Euros that they don’t have for administration and policing expenses. The current policies are just not doable.

The current situation is not sustainable. Common sense must prevail. The whole population of Africa and the Mid-East can not be transported to Europe. To paraphrase the movie “A River Runs Thgrough It,” …. “All things in Europe come together illegally and a migrant runs through it.”

Read author Allen E. Rizzi’s latest books available at Amazon.com

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