Immigration and Stereotypes
By Sabrina Alvarado
An estimated one million immigrants have come to the United States each year for the past twenty-five years. As a result, native-born Americans have grown to know and believe certain stereotypes about them. However, immigrants are actually very important to the economy.
For example, people believe that immigrants only bring crime to America. They think all immigrants from Central America are drug lords, all Muslims are terrorists, and all Italians are part of the Mafia. Evidence shows though, that this is definitely not true. According to “ The Criminalization of Immigration in the United States,” immigrants are less likely to commit serious crimes or be behind bars than native-born. This just proves that immigrants don’t increase the number of crimes in the United States, but instead, lower crime rates.
Immigrants also play a key role in America’s workforce. Even though native born Americans have the fixed idea that immigrants are lazy, others might differ. “[The] point for them coming to the U.S. is to work and create a better life for themselves. [In] order to do that, they have to be hardworking and willing to find and maintain a job” said Lilyrose Rodriguez, a freshman in the Tech & Media magnet. This meaning that immigrants are the complete opposite of lazy: diligent. Because they most likely don’t have this opportunity in their home country, they do not take employment for granted. They do whatever they can to ensure their income.
One of the popular stereotypes about immigrants, is that they only come to increase the United States’ population and do not contribute in any way. Yet, statistics continue to prove this wrong. Moody’s Analytics shows how for every one percent increase in the U.S. population made of immigrants, GDP rises an estimated 1.15 percent. This shows that immigrants contribute in an extremely important way: America’s Gross Domestic Product. In fact, because of the large number of immigrants that came into America last year, the GDP increased tremendously.
Lastly, native- born Americans think that, in general, immigrants just bring any type of harm to the United States. Rodriguez stated, “ I feel like many immigrants come to the United States seeking a better future for themselves and their family. Their goal is to just better their living standards and not to harm the U.S. in any way.”
As previously proved, immigrants are essential in America’s economy. Not all are criminals, not all are lazy, and not all are harmful to the U.S..