Given the current restrictive policies and refugee crises, the future will be even more horrific for immigrants without swift progress in making a place for these additional millions. Keep in mind that refugees are mostly from impoverished places in the world that contributed very little to the greenhouse gases that are causing the ravages of climate change. Yet they are the ones paying the biggest price.

Border scene, April, 2008 in Sasabe, Mexico

By Roger Cuthbertson  Original to Rise Up Times  March 2, 2022

NO MÁS BARRERAS O FRONTERAS
by Roger Cuthbertson

No más barreras o fronteras                       No more walls or borders

Entre el norte y el sur                                  Between north and south

No más barreras o fronteras                      No more walls or borders

Entre los ricos y los pobres                         Between rich and poor

No más barreras o fronteras                       No more walls or borders

Entre los elites y los campesinos                 Between elitists and common                                                                                 people

No más barreras o fronteras                       No more walls or borders

Entre las muchas religiones                         Between the many religions

No más barreas o fronteras                         No more walls or borders

Entre humanos y naturalista libre              Between humans and natural                                                                                  environment

No más barreras o fronteras                       No more walls or borders

Entre nosotros y ellos                                  Between us and them

INTRODUCTION

As might be evident from the preceding words, I am interested in bringing down borders and barriers to peaceful human interaction and movement. I have always loved the words from John Lennon’s song, “Imagine”:

“Imagine all the people,
Sharing all the world,
You may say I’m a dreamer,
But I’m not the only one,
I hope someday you’ll join us,
And the world will be as one.”
                   (John Lennon)

WHAT ARE THESE THINGS CALLED BORDERS THAT WE CONTEMPLATE OPENING OR REMOVING?

Borders can take many forms. A border can be much more than a wall, such as seen in the picture above. A border can be an imaginary line on the earth, a physical barrier, a militarized zone, or a set of legal rules. A border can emanate from an institution such as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) or Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or the Department of Homeland Security. A border can be a pattern of attitudes or relationships between people, including class divisions and racist barriers, and more. In the USA, CBP has been given an expanded area of jurisdiction to include an area up to 100 miles from the physical border. ICE enforcement is allowable pretty much anywhere and everywhere in the U.S. So not only do borders take many different forms, but borders are everywhere. Everything considered, the removal or opening of borders is not a trivial matter.

PART I   THE CASE FOR OPENING AND REMOVING BORDERS

OPEN BORDERS ARE NOT A NEW OR RADICAL IDEA

Open borders were more or less the norm, at least in North America, before World War I, so this is not an untried idea. Over the years, ways to obtain legal citizenship have generally diminished. People haven’t stopped emigrating. They have continued to emigrate, but many migrate without documentation. While most countries have been quite unwelcoming of immigrants in the present era, Germany did accept about one million fleeing refugees in 2015. At least one present day country, Portugal, has recently been greatly encouraging immigration, with some success, (Williams) making it a country to watch, for anyone interested in less restrictive immigration policy.

Borders are by their nature at odds with an essential aspect of freedom—that is freedom of movement—freedom to go somewhere else or to stay in place in peace and security.  So, everything else being equal, a human value should be to maximize freedom of movement and travel for human beings.

THERE IS A MORAL IMPERATIVE FOR OPENING UP OUR BORDERS

The horrific images and dreadful stories tear at our consciousness every day. Recently we heard about mounted U.S. border patrol agents chasing Haitian migrants and herding them like cattle while menacing them with their whip-like reins. Meanwhile thousands of other Haitians were camped under a bridge, hoping against bad odds to somehow obtain legal U.S. status, even though U.S. officials have declared that they are all illegal and, using a lame and arguably illegal Title 42 COVID19 excuse, not eligible to even apply for asylum. Thousands of Haitians were flown to Haiti, some chained hand and foot. (Cohn) Meanwhile, Haiti is in no shape to take on reluctant immigrants having recently endured an earthquake, a hurricane, an assassination of the president, and a devastating outbreak of COVID19. Not long ago, it was Afghans storming the airport in Kabul, some hanging on to departing airplanes and falling to their deaths. We still have thousands of children separated from their parents, languishing in crowded and unhealthy detention centers. Then there are the infant migrant bodies washing up on Mediterranean shores, and boats full of migrants not allowed to come ashore anywhere and hundreds of annual deaths of migrants trying to cross the deserts. The tragedy goes on, unabated. Open borders would bring an end to the extreme suffering and death of people forced by circumstances beyond their control to make illegal, dangerous, and often futile attempts to migrate.

How can we say no to taking in emigrants when their situations are so often utterly desperate, and when those of us who are citizens have so little to lose by offering them a small bit of space in our huge country? When we turn our backs on them, they have no decent future. They die in unspeakable numbers. Aren’t they human beings just like us? When we turn our backs on them, what is our cost in saying, “No”?  What happens to a people that stops being compassionate?

Abandoned worn out shoe my hiking partner, Craig Wood, and I found in the roadless desert wilderness in Arizona between Sasabe and Arivaca.   April, 2008

What is noticeably absent in most of the writing in favor of restrictive immigration policies is any sympathy or compassion for the immigrants.  It is all about taking care of the interests of American citizens. There is no admission whatsoever that a world better for all would be better for American citizens, too. I believe that you can make a case for open borders just based upon self-interests of American citizens. But why not take a more unselfish view?  Do we want to leave to our children a world where being indifferent to the needs of others is the established norm?  Who wants to live in such a world?

“It is the obligation of every person born in a safer room to open the door when someone in danger knocks.”          —Dina Nayeri

Emigration is, to a considerable extent, the outcome of poverty, hunger, unemployment, lack of education, war, catastrophic events of nature, capitalism, conquest, racism, colonialism, and now, man-made climate change. The same global power system that causes emigration tends to criminalize immigration. (Harsha Walia)  The U.S., whose affluence and dominance comes from a  history of exploitation of the third world, owes it to the dispossessed (many turned emigrants) to make reparation; at the very least we owe it to the refugees to join us in having a chance to have a share of the economic pie. In the future an important way to reduce the number of refugees would be to get at the root causes of emigration. In the meantime, we need to find room for refugees.

“No one leaves home unless home is the mouth of a shark.”
Warsan Shire  (Amnesty)

U.S. IMMIGRATION AND BORDER POLICY IS BROKEN AND NEEDS TO BE REPLACED

Billions of dollars are spent by the United States government on policies and practices to keep immigrants out of this country. These policies and practices bring frustration, harm, suffering and death to thousands of people each year. In spite of these expenditures of money and resources, immigrants keep coming, even when drastic measures are put in place to stop them. So, the system needs change. Open borders would help a lot of people escape from very desperate circumstances. How about a change that would open our borders to them and help them? Militarism and imperial exploitation are part of the reason the immigrants are forced to flee their homes. As David Lammy (whose ancestors were slaves) once put it, “I am here, because you were there. We are here, because you were there.” (Tottenham) Imperial practices of exploitation should end. We owe it to the dispossessed to make a place for them.

About five miles NNE of Sasabe Arizona.  April, 2008

INEFFICIENCIES AND INJUSTICES ASSOCIATED WITH RESTRICTIVE IMMIGRATION PRACTICES

Think of the huge cost of enforcing borders. Think of the huge budgets of ICE, Homeland Security, and Customs and Border Protection. Detaining people for lack of documentation is detention without crime. Noncitizens in the U.S. do not have the constitutional rights of citizens, and can therefore get excessively caught up in the legal system. Detaining immigrants is a big and profitable business whose product is human misery.  It is estimated that over 75 percent of detainees are detained in for-profit detention centers. (Anon. USAToday) I think this is reprehensible. It invites the abuse of looking for ways to lock up and exploit vulnerable people for financial gain. Think of the suffering of the people, including families, caught up in the justice system, when their only crime was to cross a border in a desperate attempt of finding a secure job and home.  Wouldn’t it be cheaper to just let the immigrants go where they want to go, and let them be productive contributors to collective productivity.

We must find room for immigrants who are in ever increasing numbers fleeing climate change and environmental devastation. By 2050, it is estimated in a World Bank Report that climate change could result in somewhere between 44 million and 200 million additional migrants due to drought, water shortages, failing crops, and rising sea levels. And this estimate doesn’t even count emigration due to short-term extreme weather events. (Brita) Given the current restrictive policies and refugee crises, the future will be even more horrific for immigrants without swift progress in making a place for these additional millions. Keep in mind that refugees are mostly from impoverished places in the world that contributed very little to the greenhouse gases that are causing the ravages of climate change. Yet they are the ones paying the biggest price.

OPENING BORDERS WOULD STIMULATE ECONOMIES AND BRING ABOUT AN ECONOMIC BOOM

In a world of open borders, many economists believe people would generally be better off, without much additional strain on resources and the environment. “Gross world product would increase 67 to 147 percent,” according to economist Michael Clemens, and “a world of free movement would be $78 trillion richer.” (Clemens)  Many migrants are just looking for a job and a secure place to live. Why get in the way of this? If people are productive, the larger society also benefits. As the late Senator Wellstone put it, “We all do better when we all do better.” (Cunningham) The fact that capital flows freely across borders while labor does not is a hardship to workers and is one of the reasons labor gets exploited unfairly. Open borders would mitigate this problem. The migrants would go where a better living could be made. And since they would be more productive, they would add more to the wealth and well being of the rest of the world. Increased immigration would bring lower consumer prices and anti-inflation pressures to the migrant receiving places. The new workers in the U.S. and other countries could send checks to their families in the countries of origin. Presently, the value of remittances by immigrants to their home countries exceeds the total value of foreign aid. (Daramy) The countries left with fewer people could divide the resources with a bigger share per person. Also, the reduced population and lower supply of labor would probably bring higher wages.

George Mason University economist Bryan Caplan, in “Open Borders: The Science and Ethics of Immigration,” argues that world production of $75 trillion could be doubled by merely opening borders. (Caplan and Weinersmith) Think of all of the refugees idling their time away in dreary refugee camps.  Millions have to be spent feeding and caring for these people, even though their maintenance is minimal.  Why not let them go where they want to go to begin a productive life that adds to GNP and taxes?

THERE ARE EVEN MORE BENEFITS OF OPEN BORDERS

It has never stopped being true that diversity of population provides strength, once people learn to get along with each other and make creative use of their differences. Opening borders might go a long way towards bringing about greater economic equality.  Opening borders would greatly enhance the prospects of peace instead of war, because if we are all more or less one country, bombing someplace else would be bombing ourselves. Countries with increased immigration could use the excess labor to transition to a green economy. There would be increased efficiency in getting workers to the places they are needed and away from the places where they are not needed. Climate change and other existential problems could be tackled by a unified world instead of a divided world. Wildlife and indigenous peoples would appreciate getting back to open borders. Closing the border with a wall disrupts the natural environment and is especially disruptive to migratory practices of wildlife and indigenous people such as the Tohono O’odham, whose ancestral home in the Sonoran desert is now divided by a wall between Arizona and Mexico.

Along with borders comes the militarized policing of the border with its ugly and destructive practices. It would be nice to bring peace and tranquility to the borderlands again. The benefits of open borders would not just be for the poor. There is a crying need of businesses in the U.S. for labor in sectors like agriculture and food preparation that are not filled by citizens. Many businesses that use undocumented labor would appreciate this being a legal process. Of course, the undocumented would appreciate being legal, too. A large influx of immigrants to the U.S., with its aging population, might go a long way toward keeping Medicare and Social Security solvent.

“Love of country is a splendid thing, but why should love
stop at the border?”                           Pablo Casals  (Casals)

PART II   RESPONSE TO ARGUMENTS AGAINST OPEN BORDERS

FEAR THAT IMMIGRANTS WILL TAKE THEIR JOBS AND DRIVE THEIR WAGES DOWN.

For the most part, immigrants do work that most native-born citizens don’t do and don’t want to do. For example, after the first responder firemen and emergency medical workers to the stricken World Trade Towers on 9/11, the second responders who picked through the toxic rubble were mostly undocumented immigrants, mainly from Latin America and eastern Europe. (Karla Cornejo Villavicencio 32-33)  While immigrants would not be as desperate under a system of open borders, they would still tend to start at the bottom of the economic ladder. Some native-born workers might be displaced, but the increased economic activity based upon increased productivity of the immigrants and the economic boom of providing housing, and other needs of the immigrants would create new jobs.

Immigrants in an open border world wouldn’t be exploited so much by low wages and poor working conditions, because they would not face deportation for standing up to their bosses. They could join in solidarity with native workers in unions. For these reasons, the downward pressure on wages and worker rights would not be as great in a system of open border environment where immigrant workers had the same constitutional rights as citizens.

The country wouldn’t have to rely on market forces to deal with an excess of cheap immigrant labor (if it happens). Jobs could be created that would benefit society such as were created in the 1930’s with the Civilian Conservation Corps. A present day twist on this sort of thing could be the creation of green jobs such as installing solar or wind power or using labor intensive methods in agriculture to replace the use of herbicides, injurious to human health and the natural environment.

There might be some native-born workers who find themselves losing out in competition with a big influx of immigrants willing to work for less pay.  But since open borders would boost the economy, overall, there would be funds available to provide a safety net for the displaced workers. The main challenge would be to make sure that transition adjustments and costs would not be borne by those least able to pay. In the long run the open border economy will serve the vast majority of people better than the present restrictive policies.

A recent report of scientific evidence to confirm what I have been saying about immigrant workers not driving down the wages of native-born workers:

“A U.S.-based economist won the Nobel Prize in economics Monday, Oct 11, 2021, for pioneering research that transformed widely held ideas about the labor force, showing how an increase in the minimum wage doesn’t hinder hiring, and immigrants don’t lower pay for native-born workers. Canadian-born David Card, of the University of California, Berkeley, was awarded half of the prize on how the minimum wage, immigration, and education affect the labor market.  The other half was shared by Joshua Angrist, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Dutch-born Guido Imbens of Stanford University, for their framework for studying issues that can’t rely on traditional scientific methods.”  (Associated Press)

The report does go on to say that a surge of immigrant workers did have a small, but real downward effect on earlier immigrants’ wages. This would seem to confirm my earlier assertion that immigrants are not in competition with native-born workers, (while they might be in wage competition with other immigrant workers).

On April 8, 2008 this Wackenhut bus was parked on Arivaca Road, not more than 1½  miles from Arivaca, AZ. It held one detainee. On the previous day,
there was a fully loaded bus at the same location.

IMMIGRANTS MIGHT INTRODUCE A LOT OF CRIME TO THE COUNTRIES THEY ENTER

The truth is, Immigrants commit less crime than native-born people in the U.S.  Naturalized immigrants commit far less crime than native-born people in the U.S. Non citizen immigrants commit about the same amount of crime as native-born citizens, but this fact is skewed by the fact that much of their crime is the offense of crossing the border illegally. Children of immigrants tend to commit the same amount of crime as other Americans. (Caplan and Weinersmith 91)

FEAR THAT OPEN BORDERS WOULD OPEN THE COUNTRY TO MORE TERRORISM

Fear of terrorism appears to be a bit overblown. “Your chance of being killed by a terrorist is one in 3,200,000. That’s less than the chance of being killed by lightning. Your chance of being killed by a foreign born terrorist is even less than that.” (Caplan and Weinersmith 88)  As explained by UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Antonio Manuel de Oliveira Guterres,  refugees are not terrorists. A clear distinction has to be made between terrorists and refugees, who are often the first victims of terrorism.” (Spindler)  Although it has been claimed that increased enforcement along the U.S. southern border with Mexico will improve national security, one study by Robert Lake in “The Quantitative Analysis of Terrorism and Immigration” found that not one terrorist has entered the United States from Mexico.” (Johnson)  To those who would argue that no terrorist has entered the U.S. from Mexico, because border security is so completely effective, the thousands of people who do illegally cross the border each year make this argument ludicrous. Migrants from Mexico are looking for jobs and security, not opportunities to make terroristic attacks.

Customs and Border Protection and ICE spend most of their time and energy and money finding reasons to keep all but a small fraction of would be immigrants out of the country. If they were freed from that task, they could use their resources to track and prosecute the real threats to national security. Instead of rounding up and deporting ordinary people, the authorities could concentrate on investigating evidence of real threats to national security.

IMMIGRANTS MIGHT BE OVERLY DEPENDENT ON WELFARE

The economist, Milton Friedman, famously argued that you can’t simultaneously have free immigration and a welfare state. (Griswold)  What I think he is suggesting is that in a less restrictive world of immigration, immigrants would flock to countries that have robust welfare policies just to take advantage of the welfare freebees.

But the evidence suggests that immigrants use less welfare than native citizens. Part of the reason for this is that some countries, including the U.S., have laws that don’t allow immigrants to take advantage of many welfare programs.  I would argue for the abolition of such laws, but some of these could be left in place, if that is what it would take to allow more immigration. If people are worried that open borders would cause a big surge in immigrants seeking welfare, note that most of the well-to-do nations of the earth have far more welfare benefits than the U.S.  So, if it was just about welfare, immigrants would do well to go somewhere other than the U.S.

The critics of less restrictive border policies worry endlessly about welfare costs of immigrants and other supposed economic burdens, but they don’t factor in the immense costs of border security policies, including border patrol, fence making, incarceration, and court costs associated with rounding up and deporting undocumented people. Much of these expenditures could be used to accommodate an increase in immigration. Think of the budgets of The Department of Homeland Security, ICE, CBP and the like. Millions of would be immigrants languish in refugee camps, where they are taken care of to some degree by flows of welfare money from around the world. Sadly, in these camps there is little production and income generation, which could offset the cost of welfare. By contrast, legal immigrants stimulate the economy with their production and taxes.

The bottom line is this: migrants don’t seek welfare. They seek jobs. Provide jobs, and there will be little need for welfare.

FEAR THAT OPEN BORDERS WOULD BRING A FLOOD OF IMMIGRANTS THAT WOULD OVERWHELM THE SYSTEM AND CREATE CHAOS MAYBE EVEN CIVIL WAR

Reihan Salam makes this argument in his book, “Melting Pot or Civil War?”   He offers that a flood of new arrivals would likely have a better life, even though the economic means and political will would not be available to incorporate them into the mainstream. They would likely live in segregated ethnic enclaves of limited economic means. The second and third generations of these immigrants would radically rebel against their limited opportunities. The native population would fearfully oppose and repress those efforts, leading to war and unrest. He claims, as an example, that the current racial and ethnic tensions in America are much the result of the high influx of immigrants. (Salam)

While no one can be certain what the overall effects of greatly increased immigration would be, I think the best guess for a flood of new immigrants would be an economic boom that would increase political stability everywhere. Instability arises out of privation and desperation, not prosperity. But people have outlandish fears of more immigrants. People even have the mistaken view that current levels of immigration are very high, when, in actual fact, current levels of immigration are not high by historic standards. It is the fear that we need to control, not the migrants.

Even if greatly higher rates of immigration did lead to less political stability in the country receiving the immigrants, there would be an accompanying increase in political stability in the greater global scene. One cannot continue to ignore the increasingly desperate needs of refugees without having to deal with the political upheaval that attends such a state of being.  We can’t just think about our own selves, in isolation.

The bottom line is, if you are afraid of too many immigrants overwhelming the system you can adopt open borders gradually, instead of all at once.

IF OPEN BORDERS WOULD CREATE AN ECONOMIC BOOM, HOW COULD THE ENVIRONMENT NOT BE EVEN MORE STRESSED THAN IT ALREADY IS BY POLLUTION, GLOBAL WARMING AND THE LIKE?

Systemic change is needed to bring about a green economy and some greater measure of economic equality. In a world of open borders, people would be so dispersed and mixed together, it would be sort of like one world or one country. The waste and destruction of war and war preparation might be almost entirely eliminated, to the greater health of the environment. If reductions in consumption need to be made to save the environment, all of us need to reduce consumption. Those who consume the most need to cut back the most.

Some people would argue that America has outgrown its need for immigrants. Because of automation, there is no market for a large influx of unskilled immigrants. And now we need to shut off immigration in order to maintain prosperity.

But, for example, suppose we mandate an entirely organic regime of agriculture with zero herbicide and pesticide use. We will all have healthier and longer lives.  There will be a labor market for labor intensive agriculture. Expensive? Not as expensive as running homeless shelters or refugee camps, because there is useful work being done without costly medical harm from the toxic chemicals. Suppose all the unskilled labor jobs are automated completely.  Why would we look at this as a problem? We are just as rich in terms of goods and services as when humans do the work. And we all get to be on permanent vacation, or pursue other productive activities. The activity will stimulate the economy. All we need to do is to equitably distribute the income from the hard working machines.

WHY DON’T THE IMMIGRANTS COME LEGALLY, LIKE OUR ANCESTORS DID?

Of course, we are all immigrants or descendants of immigrants, even the Native Americans who got here first. When the earliest white settlers came to America, they didn’t ask the indigenous people for permission to settle the land. So, how were these settlers somehow legal? They proceeded to kill the natives and take their land. How is this legal or legitimate? Later, laws were made to regulate immigration.  The laws were not made by the native peoples, but by the intruders. How could this authority be legal or legitimate? My ancestors came from Europe at a time when there were very few laws, if any, limiting immigration.  They were immigrants that became a part of a white settler colonial society that had established slavery and exterminated indigenous people and taken their land. Exploitation of indigenous people and other vulnerable groups endures to the present day. Present day migrants just want a job. They might need a bit of help, but they won’t be exploiting or killing anyone any more than you or I would. Ningun ser humano es ilegal. No one who is human is illegal.

INCREASED MIGRATION WOULD RESULT IN A ‘BRAIN DRAIN’ IN THE HOME COUNTRIES OF THE MIGRANTS

For example, while many immigrants are unskilled, it is true that doctors, scientists, academics and other skilled people may emigrate and leave a shortage of their skills in their country of origin. I don’t think this effect would be critical. For one thing, many the immigrants would send remittances back to their home countries. Some of that money could go to education in the home country. Since the borders would be open for coming and going, skilled workers could go back and forth and split their time in both countries. The countries receiving the skilled workers would likely be happy to be getting a balance of skilled and unskilled workers.

ALLOWING MORE BLACK AND BROWN IMMRANTS INTO THE COUNTRY WOULD MEAN GIVING UP WHITE MAJORITY AND WHITE PRIVILEGE

I wouldn’t give this racist view the time of day, except for the fact that it is alive and well today, and for the fact that racism has driven much of immigration policy over the years. Some outrageous examples would be the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, slavery and the repressive Jim Crow practices and law enforcement practices after the abolition of slavery, the internment camps and seizure of property of the Japanese during World War II, Trump’s Muslim ban, and the Immigration Act of 1924 and other similar acts that set up country by country quotas for immigrants so as to control race and nationality. Race shouldn’t be a factor in immigration practice, but it is. We have to get beyond putting borders between us and them who are superficially different.

PART III   HOW OPENING BORDERS MIGHT BE APPROACHED

In my view, a world that opened its borders all at once is nice to contemplate, but might not be that easy to achieve.  A gradual and practical approach to that end might be reaching reciprocal open border agreements between sovereign states, one by one. The United State could open its borders to agreeing states. For example, the U.S. might agree with Canada and Mexico to add open borders to the North American Free Trade Agreement. The goal is less restrictive border policies, reaching toward John Lennon’s dream.

Thinking about how open borders might be organized, there could be seamless movement to and from the outside world, as between states in The United States. Of course, this would require a great deal of coordination and organization amongst the sovereign states of the world that agreed to open borders. Or, there could be border checkpoints to check some kind of universal identification. There could be record keeping to keep track of who is coming and who is going. There could be background checks to thwart criminal or terrorist threats.  There could be a medical check up to screen people for health issues. But the default rule would be that, with some few exceptions, nearly everyone would be free to cross borders in any direction, quite freely.  This would replace the current default policy which keeps the borders sealed, except for an extremely limited number of applicants. In my vision of open borders, once across the border, migrants or travelers would have legal resident status, with virtually all of the rights and responsibilities of citizens, including the rights of due process guaranteed by the constitution. Grounds for deportation would be very limited.  The legal residents would have the same access to welfare benefits as citizens. They would have the same responsibilities as citizens, including the duty to pay taxes.  They would not have the right to vote or hold office until they became naturalized citizens.  They would be eligible to apply for citizenship, possibly along the lines of current law. Simply put, borders would not be the barriers they are today.

In conclusion I am advocating open borders for the U.S. and for the world. Once borders are completely open, doing away with borders altogether could be accomplished. In the meantime, any progress towards making borders less restrictive and more humane would be applauded by me.

“Give me your tired, your huddled masses yearning to be free.”
Emma Lazarus (Emma Lazarus)

The author, standing in front of the regional headquarters of ICE, at Fort Snelling

ACKNOWLEGEMENTS

Thanks to my partner, Jo Schubert, for her generous suggestions and help in putting this paper into more presentable form. Thanks to Jo’s sister-in-law, Sue Schubert for helping with the Spanish translation for the poem, No Más Barreras O Fronteras, at the top of this presentation. Thanks to Craig Wood for proofreading help and for accompanying me on our 2008 trip to the US-Mexico border that helped inform us about border issues. Thanks, especially to Sue Ann Martinson, for her extraordinary help in getting this article ready for publishing.

Works Cited

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Anon. “‘These People Are Profitable’: Under Trump, Private Prisons Are Cashing in on ICE Detainees.” Www.usatoday.com, USA Today, 23 Apr. 2020, www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/nation/2019/12/19/ice-detention-private-prisons-expands-under-trump-administration/4393366002/.

Associated Press. “3 US-Based Economists Win Nobel for Research on Wages, Jobs.” AP NEWS, 11 Oct. 2021, apnews.com/article/nobel-prizes-business-europe-3cbc672f994ae6f4f486a68b52c2bb32.

Brito, Renata. “Report: Climate Change Could See 200 Million Move by 2050.” AP NEWS, AP News, 13 Sept. 2021, apnews.com/article/africa-climate-environment-and-nature-immigration-europe-69cada32a7c13f80914a2a7b48fb5b9c.

Caplan, Bryan, and Sach Weinersmith. OPEN BORDERS : The Science and Ethics of Immigration. First Second Press, Roaring Book Press, Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings LTD, 2019, p. 35. A graphic novel.

Casals, Pablo. “Pablo Casals Quotes about Brotherhood.” A-Z Quotes, 15 Apr. 1970, www.azquotes.com/author/2589-Pablo_Casals/tag/brotherhood. “Joys and Sorrows: Reflections by Pablo Casals,” written by Pablo Casals with the help of Albert Kahn in his 90th year. Simon and Schuster, 1970.
ISBN 10: 0671204858  ISBN 13: 9780671204853.

Clemens, Michal. “A World of Free Movement Would Be $78 Trillion Richer.” The Economist, 13 July 2017, www.economist.com/the-world-if/2017/07/13/a-world-of-free-movement-would-be-78-trillion-richer.

Cohn, Marjorie. “Biden’s Expulsion of Haitian Migrants Is Racist, Illegal — and Trumpian.” Truthout, Truthout, 2 Oct. 2021, truthout.org/articlws/bidens-expulsion-of-haitian-migrants-is-racist-illegal-and-trumpian.

Cunningham, Gary. “WE ALL DO BETTER WHEN WE ALL DO BETTER.” Star Tribune, 21 Sept. 2010, www.startribune.com/we-all-do-better-when-we-all-do-better/103588254/. Quotation from a speech by Paul Wellstone in 1999 to the Sheet Metal Workers Union.

Daramy, Ade. “Remittances Are Three Times Greater than Aid – How Can They Go Even Further?” The Guardian, 11 May 2016, www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2016/may/11/remittances-three-times-greater-aid-sdgs.

David Lammy Tottenham. “I Am Here Because You Were There…” Facebook, 30 Apr. 2018, www.facebook.com/DavidLammyTottenham/posts/i-am-here-because-you-were-therewe-are-here-because-you-were-theremy-ancestors-w/10155256727986541/.

Griswold, Daniel T. “Immigration and the Welfare State.” Papers.ssrn.com, Cato Journal, 15 Jan. 2012, papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2247468#. An abstract with a link to the full paper.

Harsha Walia. BORDER and RULE : Global Migration, Capitalism, and the Rise of Racist Nationalism. Haymarket Books, 2021.

Johnson, Kevin R. Opening the Floodgates : Why America Needs to Rethink Its Borders and Immigration Laws. New York University Press; Chesham, 2007, p. 80.

Beinart, Peter. From Kevin R. Johnson’s book “Why America Needs to Rethink Its Borders and Immigration Laws, (NYU Press, 2007, page 80) quoting from “The Wrong Place to Stop Terrorists” by Peter Beinart, Washington Post, May 4, 2006. See also “The Quantitative Analysis of Immigration, An Initial Exploration, February, 2006, referred to in the Washington Post article.

Karla Cornejo Villavicencio. The Undocumented Americans. One World, an imprint of Penguin Random House, 2020, pp. 32–33.

Lazarus, Emma. The New Colossus. www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/46550/the-new-colossus. These words are carved at the base of the Statue of Liberty.

Lennon, John. Imagine. 1971. John Lennon’s classic song “Imagine” from the 1971 album of the same name..

Nayeri, Dina. “The Ungrateful Refugee: We Have No Debt to Repay.” The Guardian, 4 Apr. 2017.

Salam, Reihan. Melting Pot or Civil War?  A Son of Immigrants Makes the Case against Open Borders. Hardcover, Sentinel, imprint of  Penguin Random House, 2018.

Shire, Warsan. “Home.” Amnesty, Mar. 2016, www.amnesty.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/home-by-warsan-shire.pdf.

Spindler, William. “‘Don’t Confuse Refugees with Terrorists,’ Says Guterres.” UNHCR, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, July 2005, www.unhcr.org/en-us/news/latest/2005/7/42e0df204/dont-confuse-refugees-terrorists-says-guterres.html.

Williams, Thomas Chatterton. “The Wanderer’s Port: One Morning in September, a Dapper Frenchman Seated next to Me in the Garden of the Château de Tocqueville Gestured Solemnly at the Front Page of Le Monde, the House….” Harper’s Magazine, Vol. April 2020, 13 Mar. 2020, harpers.org/archive/2020/04/the-wanderers-port/.


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By Published On: March 3rd, 20220 Comments

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  1. octaevius March 3, 2022 at 6:55 PM

    In order to eliminate borders you must also eliminate currency which exists solely as a support for privatization, so you must end privatization. You must establish the First Planetary Council of Earth. Only this will allow Earth Citizenship, Earth Healthcare and Earth Education. This would be a Civilization upgrade to the First Level One Civilization.
    According to Fidel Castro, “The Human Ego would never allow it.”

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