Immigration Citizenship & The Pursuit of Happiness


Whether it's Arizona's controversial new law requiring citizens to produce "papers" proving their legal status or President Obama's decision to send additional national guard troops to the US/Mexico border, immigration remains one of the most contentious issues in contemporary politics. As the battle over "comprehensive" reform heats up, everyone has an opinion. caught up with immigrants to learn why they moved to a country that defines itself as a multicultural melting pot.  Citizenship: The Pursuit of Happiness was produced and edited by Dan Hayes.

Approximately 5.15 minutes. 

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  1. I think they have completely lost their minds in Arizona. Must be something in the water.

    1. Why because they don’t want to turn into Mexico. A country so bad that a large part of the population can’t wait to escape.

      1. Turn *back* into Mexico


    2. Since 60% of US-born Arizonans — and presumably a higher proportion of voting Arizonans — weren’t born in Arizona, I’d blame the water everywhere else.

      Arizona’s real immigration problem is immigrants from the rest of the US swarming into the state and voting for psycho legislators who vote for psycho laws.

    3. There is a major difference between legal immigration and criminal invasion.

      1. Yep. And illegal economic migration is far closer to the former than the latter.

        For those of us who don’t believe that legality equals morality, it is indistinguishable from the former.

    4. Look at all you guys trying to debate the anon-bot. It’s a fight you cannot win.

  2. Nice short.

    What’s with the guys in the Mexico jerseys? I’m for an open immigation policy as much as the next guy, but when you come to this country you root for our soccer team, damnit!

    1. This is ‘murica. We don’t watch soccer here, period.

  3. Finally Reason gives us some feel good content.

    1. Mr. Balko, you have a call on line 3.

  4. I’m sure if we’d just open the border it would all work out. What could go wrong?

  5. Black TV Jesus said Arizona is exactly like Nazi Germany because of this law, and I’m with him.

  6. This country that the people speak of where one is free to pursue happiness sounds awesome.

  7. Don’t be fooled. The border patrol is on orders to shoot anyone trying to escape Amerika.

    Republicans will eventually get what they are wishing for- a national ID card.

    I like the way Peru forces every citizen to vote at election time. Each Peruvian gets a sticker on their ID card when they vote. If they don’t have that sticker, they can’t perform any transactions at the bank, etc. until they have paid a hefty fine.

    Now let’s ponder. Why would any state demand forced suffrage?

  8. It always gets a little dusty in here whenever I see these videos of the naturalization ceremony.

    Must be the pollen or something.

  9. As Mexicans hold dual citizenship, they cannot honestly pledge the oath of US citizenship. Reason is completely unbalanced on this issue. By failing to acknowledge the drawbacks of illegal immigration, their credibility is in tatters.

    If we are going to be a border-less country, why give preference to Mexicans and South Americans? Geographical coincidence? Why not bring boatloads of Ethiopians here, they are even more deserving of happiness right?

    Reason also fails to note that these immigrants they love so much would overwhelmingly vote for the very policies they abhor most, which would result in an even more enormous welfare state. Fools.

    1. I do not understand why the consequences are not recognized by the open borders crowd, either.

      1. I think it’s all about making a low-cost, short-term buck – and that is it. :-/

        1. Of course it’s not at all possible that the open borders crowd might actually…

          hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. ? That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…

          1. *sigh* Yeah, Mike… but the nation cannot long last when it does not reserve the right to allow people who hold the same ideals in, not allow others who do not. Illegal immigrants are not here because of altruistic ideals held by the politicians (with an eye toward future contituencies) and business people (looking to cut costs by not paying the prevailing wage.)

            1. Sigh?

              I guess you want to change Jefferson’s words to say “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness, so long as they were born on our side of a line on a map.”

              1. No I do not, Mike P. Would that the inhabitants of certain nations-in-question followed the same hallowed words and traditions that we supposedly value in ours? How about we just do away with all borders and live foot-loose and fancy free? These nations that are being fled in droves do not adhere to the same sense of common law or social mores, and a small group of people in differing positions of power are taking advantage of the plight of the people arriving here without permission.

                Let me ask you a hypothetical, Mike P.- If our leaders in business and in politics continue to thwart the will of the vast majority of the american public, for which this government was instituted, then what is the impetus for the public to follow the laws as put forth by these captains of government and industry? Hmmmm….

                1. So if you believe that people have the same rights regardless of where they were born, how can you support the American public’s denial of others’ rights to travel, reside, and work wherever they can find mutually agreeable terms?

                  If our leaders in business and in politics continue to thwart the will of the vast majority of the american public, for which this government was instituted, then what is the impetus for the public to follow the laws as put forth by these captains of government and industry?

                  Consider asking this question in 1850.

                  1. Lemme guess… you’re actually drawing parallels between slavery and illegal immigration here. And because the vast majority of the american public wants illegal immigration stopped and the current laws concerning immigration enforced – then (here comes the zombie-esque, worn out syllogism…again) that same majority are – at least the moral equivalent to – the same type of racist, pro-slavery, toothless, backwater type that inhabited the antebellum south 160 years ago, right? …(slaps forehead).. Oy-vey!!

                  2. Slaves from the African sub-continent were brought here against their will so, at least in my mind, that very fact would or should totally nullify your premise – if I haved surmised your ‘1850’ comment correctly, sir.

                    1. .. should’ve said -“sub-saharan africa”- ‘scuse me!

                    2. Actually, I am simply arguing that the public can be wrong. They were wrong in 1850. Half a century later most everyone realized they were wrong in 1850.

                      I think they are wrong now. I hope that half a century hence our progeny will look on today’s intolerance of free migration as similarly mistaken.

                    3. Then I will have to agree to disagree with you, Mike P. A rhetorical question of which everyone on this board probably knows …. why are not these countries of which so many illegal immigrants are leaving in droves economic powerhouses themselves? I mean with the work ethic, determination, faith, and loyalty to the family structure – why they should be swimming in black ink several times over, wouldn’t you think? (Or could it be, dare I say it, a bereft and corrupt society?) I am not saying in any way that we are a Nirvana, BTW….

                    4. Because people are more likely to willfully migrate from worse situations to better situations. Thus the places people migrate from are generally in worse shape than the places people migrate to.

                      Incidentally, that’s very strong evidence of the immorality of prohibiting migration.

                    5. MikeP – I cannot help but applaud your stance for your fellow man, but if you simply cannot or do not recognize the consequences for what I believe are very short-sited views on the overall (and not just economic outlook) health of the nation, I must oppose that view. This country will not last much longer if we continue to allow vast hordes of uneducated worker drones with the possibility of them electing into office the same representation that they left in their former homeland. Self-preservation is a very real instinct in a lot of americans and that instinct is being re-kindled more and more… not because they see a bunch of brown-skinned people here (that is a reason for some of it I’m sure),but because the lack of even attempting to assimilate has been a huge source of resentment for a lot of the electorate – and the issue of press 1 for english, etc., the large crowds declaring “this is our land, gringo”, has only served to make the public accutely aware of what is going on, even if the majority of illegals here “only want to work, feed their families, find a better life”,etc.

                      The Chamber of Commerce types, open borders crowd, and left-wing, ethnic populist agitator pols are really asking middle americans for a heck of a lot… and these same americans have seen real wages decline, real unemployment at about 16%, and their standard of living start to teeter. In other words they have had enough of the corporatist and political elite talking out of both sides of their mouths. They believe in fairness and the just treatment of their fellow human beings – but are wondering why they are not finding what they are seeking in their own countries and come here and bad-mouth the country they are un-invited guests in. Just my two cents – I have seen it from both sides of the issue and while I understand your point, MikeP, I can’t help but hope they would develop some of the cajones they seem to grow right after the cross the border and kick-a**, take no prisoners so that they could reform their own country.

  10. Now its time to try to do something new . I hope you do soon.

  11. Now its time to try to do something new . I hope you do soon.

  12. The girl at 4:53 shouldn’t have to take the test.

    It does suck for these people that illegals can just walk over and get treated just about as fairly.

    I knew someone who helped his fianc?e come over from some far off land (not mexico). After all the hassle he said he should have just flown her to Mexico and walked her across.

  13. May be we should stay away respectfully from one another, to appreciate our different talents and produce properly. May be people who have all those pretty colors in one are due here at this time to understand all these divisions instead of destroy them before they have been understood. By Reason of? gender? race? trade? of what? Happy 4th of july, and a happy reason to you.

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