Turn Right: A Path To American Citizenship

Undocumented immigrants must face some form of consequences if they do not want to travel to the United States legally. (Courtesy of Flickr)

Undocumented immigrants should be allowed to stay in the US provided they take steps to become documented. (Courtesy of Flickr)

(Editor’s Note: Due to an editing error, an unedited version of this article appeared online. The article has been changed to closely reflect how it appears in print.)

By Brianna Lyman

Along with taxes, Planned Parenthood and health care, immigration was one of the most debated issues during the 2016 presidential campaign. This issue has caused people to gravitate towards either the left or the right, but rarely the middle.

Trump’s firm “Build a Wall” campaign solidified his win, as many Americans feel that the only way to stop this influx of undocumented immigrants is to build a physical barrier.

However, there are thousands of Americans who feel that rather than deport upwards of 11 million people, we should create a path to citizenship for them, and then fix our immigration system. I am not one of those people, nor am I the other type. Instead, I have created my own sort of solution to the controversial immigration issue.

In a perfect world, people would respect our laws, and no one would come here illegally and then expect to be granted the rights granted to an American citizen and be protected under American laws.

However, we live in the age of Liberal America, meaning that the politically correct thing to do is to claim that no person can be “illegal.” And so we are now faced with the great ordeal; do we grant citizenship to the millions here illegally? Perhaps we should deport them and mandate that they come back here legally, like the thousands of others who patiently wait?

Many use the argument that if we deport 11 million people, who will do the dirty work? Who would do jobs so physically demanding for such low wages? I ask the same thing to them.

If you grant citizenship to people, then are they not legally entitled to a minimum wage job as well? And if that is the case, then does that not mean that they are doing jobs that now any American would take, considering the employers would have no choice but to pay at least minimum wage?

However, the real issue is lodged between the law and logic. The resources needed to deport 11 million people will undoubtedly be costly.

We not only have to employ agents to find these 11 million people, but then process them, send them back and figure out what to do with their children who were born here.

Although I think the just thing to do is to deport them, I understand it is just not feasible. However, with that being said, there has to be some type of reparation that undocumented immigrants must pay for entering our country illegally. To just create an easier path to citizenry is a slap in the face to the thousands that apply and wait patiently until they are cleared.

I believe that in order to gain a new path to citizenship, immigrants should have to prove that they have been working in the United States since the day they arrived, that they have no other criminal charges (aside from coming in illegally) and that they are able to speak or understand English.

They should be required to use a permit for six months, as well as pass a state mandated drivers test. They should also not collect social security, and there should be a fine to pay for those who have been here longer than a year, since some undocumented immigrants might avoid paying taxes.

Some may think these are rather harsh conditions but it is the price to pay for breaking the law, and quite frankly, a cheap price. Also, undocumented immigrants are not the only ones who should be punished.

Business owners should also have to pay a fine per undocumented immigrant hired, as this encourages them to come here since they are jobs waiting for them.

By cancelling out the middleman (employers), undocumented immigrants have no good reason to come here illegally since they will not find work, forcing them to wait patiently until they are legally processed.

There is no easy answer to solve a problem as enormous as this one, and although I hope President Trump can ease the issue, he alone cannot fix it.

We need lawmakers and citizens to come together and realize that first and foremost we are a country of laws, and that if we want the United States to stand, we need to follow and abide by these laws.

Yes, we are a country of immigrants, and it is one of the things that makes us so great. So yes, we will welcome them with open arms, as long as it is done legally.

Brianna Lyman, FCRH ’20, is an international political economy major from Dobbs Ferry, New York

There are 76 comments

  1. Time to check yourself

    People like you give Westchester a bad name. Most of the people I know from westchester are open minded humanitarians DESPITE their privileged upbringing. Even though you claim you’re not priveleged, you display the ignorance of a xenophobic white supremacist. The fact that you can’t even see your own racism is absolutely appalling. I’ll bet having these beliefs make you feel more educated and overall better than all those “crazy liberals”. I think it’s time for you to wake up and check your own human views.

  2. Grammar is worthwhile

    Quiz: Did you graduate high school? If so, did you ever learn how to use commas? Does the word “proof-read” ring a bell?

  3. StraightFolkAreCrazy

    B! are u for real rn? This might be some of the most wildin things I have ever read. You just served us dinner and we gon starve!! White cis woman heterosexual realness for filth!!! I got the fish the chips the whole meal but the fish puckered and now it’s just a bunch of lip service. Delete this now girl!

  4. John


    Sorry I’m late to the game, I was at work all day. I was doing Free NYC Tax Prep for the poor of our city, some of whom are “illegal immigrants.” These immigrants are working hard long hours at low wages to support families and give a better future to their students. Many of these people came here legally but overstayed their visas. There is a credit for the poor called the Earned Income Credit. This applies to US Citizens who fall below a certain income level. These immigrants do not earn this credit due to the fact that they have ITIN’s (social security numbers made for illegal immigrants) so don’t worry, they’re not taking any of your parents’ hard earned tax dollars. These immigrants pay their fare share as they wait for a broken system to allow them a path to citizenship. They choose to work here for horribly low wages doing jobs like food service, janitorial service, security, child care services.. basically you name a job you need done that you don’t want to do yourself and someone is doing it. These people are not doing anything wrong. They contribute an integral part to our community with the hope that they will one day be recognized for their work, or at the very least their children could live a life in this country legally. Please have some respect for these people and the jobs that they do. I would hate to lose a single one of those hard working tax-paying non-citizens to a sweeping deportation.
    I appreciate your attempted insight, but please try to see the situation before you offer solutions.

    also I am working hard to learn Spanish outside of school just as these people are slowly learning our language. We often meet each other halfway, you know, a compromise. English is not the national language. It doesn’t need to be as long as people are understanding. Thanks for your time

  5. Maria

    Absurd to me that The Fordham Ram posts pieces like this…….yet another offensive article given a platform by this publication. Terribly racist and xenophobic

  6. emmamayor

    I worry about this mentality the author has about the law being bound strictly to morality because that is not often the case. There is plenty of examples of the law not working morally and essentially harming the country (in particular I’m thinking of sentencing reform and how the law has essentially led America to have an obscene incarceration rate). While yes, the law wishes for those to become citizens lawfully, it does rely on a certain wealth class and certain time frame. The law can be broken and it’s important to not use law and morals interchangeably.

    Furthermore, cutting off job opportunities to illegal immigrants won’t stop or limit them from coming. I don’t think the author realizes that many immigrants aren’t chasing jobs but rather are being chased out of their own country. For many immigrants, it’s a life or death situation, family’s safety at stake. I’d like to politely ask the author to place herself in a hypothetically situation where she had to leave the US with her family to keep them healthy and safe despite not having the money or time to do so lawfully. I would doubt anybody would go “well that’s that, I can’t get me and my children in legally so time to give up.” Dangerous living conditions or political strife push people to take their families and run despite the law.

  7. Rambler

    Mommy and Daddy gave me everything so that means I have the authority to say what all those dirty immigrants should be doing instead! Remember when it was a law that black people and whites should be seperated in schools? Remember when it was a law that black people only counted as 3/5ths of a person? Remember when Rosa Parks broke the law to fight against racism? Your infatuation with automatically equating illegal activity to evil is disconcerting. Hoping you transfer ASAP.

    1. Brianna lyman

      Once again, I never called these illegal immigrants anything other than illegal immigrants, so no, I don’t believe them to be “dirty immigrants”. There is a difference in civil rights laws and laws about illegal immigration. Dozens of other countries have immigration laws as well, no it is not racist, rather it is to protect the interests of their country. I also never said that what they are doing is evil, you once again have placed words in my mouth. I said their actions were wrong, you cant deny that breaking a law is wrong. However I also said that there needs to be a path for them because its impossible to deport 11 million people. You’re quick to judge, slow down.

      1. Rambler

        Breaking a law to provide better lives for your family isn’t wrong from any standpoint. You’re so far removed from this issue that you can’t even imagine yourself in their situation. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” Tell me, which American monument has that engraving?

    2. Brianna lyman

      So based on your logic if I rob the market to get food for my family its justifiable because it provides my family with a better life? Or if I rob a bank its OK because my family is poor? The Statue of Liberty has that engraving, but by no means does it say “we’ll take them illegally” we are a country of laws first and foremost, you cant just have an open influx of immigrants its not safe.

      1. Rambler

        If a family is in a position where they can’t feed themselves I don’t think taking a few loaves of bread is that much of an issue. Laws aren’t absolute you have no concept of ethics.

      2. Evan

        It’s great you get to have your ignorant opinion, but if you were one of the million refugee Syrian children who needed a relocation you would probably see that asking someone to “immigrate legally” just shows how removed you are from the pain so many people are feeling right now. I won’t even get started on the fact that you clearly have no understanding of the reality of our immigration system and how difficult it already makes it for someone to enter this country legally. Under Obama’a administration, refugees relocated to the US received TWO YEARS of vetting by EVERY defense bureau in the country. But keep masking your xenophobia as concern for a country that was never yours to begin with.

  8. Disgusted & Disappointed

    “I believe that in order to gain a new path to citizenship, immigrants should have to prove that they have been working in the United States since the day they arrived, that they have no other criminal charges (aside from coming in illegally) and that they are able to speak or understand English.”

    Why is understanding English a prerequisite for a country that has no national language?
    Have you held a job before? If so, you understand that it’s not easy and immediate to get a job. Even as a highly educated woman who benefits from the privilege that comes with being white and upper middle class, it’s difficult for me to find employment in our country. Imagine being new to a country and having to on the first day secure employment. Especially while supporting a family. Especially while somehow coming up with the money for English courses (that the government, if you have your way, would not be providing). You seem to offer a lot of solutions that aren’t properly thought out, and lack common human empathy or sympathy.

    On the whole this article has overwhelming themes of classism and racism, both of which are unfortunately common themes coming from the Ram. While I can appreciate a variety of opinions, this particular one isn’t well thought out, and is offensive to many Fordham students of immigrant backgrounds. Also please keep in mind the neighborhood of the Bronx you’re in. It’s going to be an unfortunately long 4 years at Fordham if you keep this up.

    Yes, I’m sure you’re getting a lot of views, but don’t confuse notoriety for popularity.

    1. Brianna lyman

      Hi there! While my hypothetical solutions mainly focus on having those who came here illegally have some type of consequence for breaking the law, I do think it is important for people who come here to speak basic English, although we have no official language I think it is common sense to see that our Constitution, our laws, most of our politicians and many business owners speak English as their first language and use it regularly, so having immigrants understand the widely popular language would be beneficial. Coming up with a solution to a problem this large is very difficult, and there is no best answer, however I think that when someone breaks a law they should suffer consequences, whether they be small or large. Not once in my article did I mention any race, the only thing I said was “illegal immigrants” and so I am not sure how that is racist, considering we have illegals here from all over the world. It is not racist to want to uphold the laws we have, it is not racist to feel that when someone does something wrong they should have a consequence. Luckily I am extremely familiar with this area of the Bronx, as well as other areas considering my entire family was born and raised there, with many cousins and aunts living a few blocks away from Fordham, although knowing the area still does not serve as justification for why we should condone illegal behavior. Thanks again for reading 🙂

  9. S.

    I can agree with some principles of this article, but I believe it could have been much better argued. A quote from a politician, a statistic, or a historical reference will always go a long way, so I hold the argumentation to be subpar on those grounds. In addition, I might recommend that the author abstain from arguing with those commenting on this thread. In journalism, critiques will always come, and publicly arguing does not necessarily bode well in the author’s favor.

    That being said, I do not believe that it this a “racist” article. Read between the lines of the article, and the author doesn’t call out Hispanic immigrants a single time, or immigrants from any specific country. There are illegal immigrants from all over the world. By blindly assuming that she’s racist, some of these critiques perpetuate the racism about which they’re complaining. She never brought up Hispanics – but those who commented did. It is also important to note that not everyone who disagrees with you is automatically racist or ignorant.

  10. Suits

    “We need lawmakers and citizens to come together and realize that first and foremost we are a country of laws, and that if we want the United States to stand, we need to follow and abide by these laws.”

    This coming from a freshman who almost certainly frequents the bars even though she is breaking the law itself by not being of legal drinking age. Hypocrite or just ill-informed?

    1. Brianna lyman

      I have a medical disability which prevents me from eating most foods and drinking not only alcohol but soda and juices, so no, I have never drank alcohol , nor have I tried drugs, in my entire life, courtesy to my sickness. So yes, I do abide by the laws and have yet to break any. Thank you for reading and commenting, you’re making my story #1 🙂

  11. Kyle

    If only you were familiar with the actual process of migration, especially for those who arrive undocumented over our Southern border……Also legal and illegal does not equal right and wrong xo

    1. Brianna Lyman

      Hi Kyle, I actually do believe that for the most part illegal is synonymous with “wrong”, hence why it is illegal, you can condone those who break laws but just remember if you sold weed you would be arrested, double standard? Anywho thank you for reading and commenting, you’re making my story the top article!! 😊

      1. Kyle

        Hi Brianna! Historically, laws have not been completely perfect demonstrations of morality! Maybe you should take a course on legal history! Spanish imperialism was “legal” even if natives couldn’t read the treaties they were signing 🙂 And perhaps consider a course on logical argumentation since your article and comment demonstrates a complete lack thereof! Can’t believe the author of the top article on the Ram responded to my comment! Starstruck!

    2. Brianna lyman

      You are very welcome, anything for my fans! Like I said, for the most part illegal is synonymous with wrong, which implies that there are instances when the laws are oppressive and wrong. However, having illegal immigrants have some sort of consequence for breaking the law is only fair, as there is a consequence for everyone else who breaks a law. Check out my other articles!

      1. Yawn

        “Anything for my fans!” Jeez you sound like a bad sitcom archetype with comments like that; reeks of entitlement. Learn to handle criticism you’ll be getting it a lot if you continue to write poorly thought out trash like this.

      2. Kyle

        Oh, you’re right! I completely forgot all of the perpetrators of white collar crime on Wall Street, especially those who caused the 2008 financial crisis, have been persecuted to the full extent of the law! Our legal system is the pinnacle of fairness and justice (except with regards to those dastardly immigrants of course)! And if your other articles are as poorly written and argued as this one, I’m sure I’ll love them!
        xo, your biggest fan

  12. Richie lyman

    Sheltered westchester life…. you couldnt be any farther then the rruth, but hey believe what you want, and another thing ask her how much her student loans are

    1. Yawn

      Nice deflection. You managed to avoid responding to any point I made besides the ones made about the author. Fact of the matter is she’s talking about a topic she can’t even begin to get a grip on. As for complaining about her student loans well if she wanted to go here for free she should’ve earned a full scholarship. There are plenty children of undocumented parents who have managed to do so. Are their families not worth as much as yours just because you had the luxury of either having the funds to come here legally or were simply born here?

  13. Yawn

    Good job sharing your opinion that was cultivated by years of a sheltered upbringing. Your obsession with immigrants “breaking a law” just highlights your lack of empathy and understanding for individuals who aren’t white Westchester kids. People come here to escape potential horrors they may be facing back home; often times escaping death in the process. So by saying “they should just do it the leagal way” you’re suggesting they should simply die, often at the hands of cartels or extreme poverty, if they can’t afford the legal immigration fees. If people call you names it’s because you obviously lack compassion for those who are trying to improve their situation by any means possible because it “breaks a law.” This isn’t even mentioning that you failed to use a single piece of credible evidence in this piece. Hope you enjoyed continuing the stereotypes of this school being sheltered, ignorant, and insensitive to people in lower economic situations. Thanks for making people think less of my degree.

    1. Brianna Lyman

      Hi , as it is none of your business I would like to make one thing clear-I’ve lived a life far from sheltered and can only hope you never have to live one like I have, maybe you shouldn’t make assumptions on people, however thank you for reading and commenting, my article is the top article thanks to people like you 🙂

      1. Ugh

        You sound just like Trump! “check out my other articles” “top article” “giving my article more views”

        If you’re trying NOT to come off as entitled and self-absorbed, you’re not doing a very good job!

      2. Yawn

        Saying you haven’t led a privileged, sheltered life when you’re a white girl from Westchester is hilarious. Do you even realize how expensive it is to live there? Cost of living there is 50% above the national average. Taxes are 115% above the national average. (These are easily found with a quick search btw something you should’ve done before writing this “article”) Talk about living in a bubble. Some of us come from places where college isn’t even on the radar because poverty is all we know. And the whole article views comment? You’re just further proving everyone’s point that you’re an entitled brat with zero understanding of how the world outside of the Upper-Middle Class functions. Have fun telling others how they should be handling immigration when you’ve never gone to bed on an empty stomach.

  14. sydneyraechin

    Hi Brianna, the line “we are all immigrants” is very horrible assumption to make as not all of us in the United States are immigrants. Rather, African Americans had their ancestors from the African continent forcibly migrated via enslavement. Additionally, indigeneous Americans have always had this land as white Europeans used guns, germs, and steel to erase them. Furthermore, your use of the word “illegal” sickens me, and the word “undocumented” is about basic mutual respect of how one identifies. Unless you are from that group, it is not up to you to determine.

    1. Brianna Lyman

      Hi, I would like to point out that the quote you have was never said in this article, rather I said we are a country made up of immigrants, but no, we are not all immigrants.

      1. sydneyraechin

        “Yes, we are a country of immigrants, and it is one of the things that makes us so great. So yes, we will welcome them with open arms, as long as it is done legally.”- the notion that we are a country of immigrant is still false though and in the rhetoric of “we are all immigrants” and it creates erasure of not only the history of enslavement, but also the genocide of indigneous Americans.

  15. Dean

    It’s like very disturbing to me that the only concern you have over mass deportations is a logistical/financial ones. Prioritizing made up immigration laws over families, communities, and indiviuals’ safety is something I really can’t relate to, and it’s frankly disgusting. nazis get punched watch yourself

    1. Sensible FCRH Alum

      1) The laws aren’t made up.
      2) If you’re ok with letting anyone and everyone in, I pray to God you’re never in a government position. If, hypothetically,EVERYONE is let in just because, the problems are obvious, from amount of resources to safety. If people who go through the process legally are the only one’s let it, then…there’s really no harm or actual downsides.
      3) The only thing more disturbing than your use of “like” in a WRITTEN comment is the fact that you’re threatening this girl and equating her to Nazis.

      1. Lol

        Plenty of undocummeted white immigrants came from Europe earlier in this country’s history. We treated them horribly. Now later on we couldn’t care less that their families came over illegally. Why repeat the sins of the past? Why continue to demonize entire groups of people for having no real home?

      2. Sensible FCRH Alum

        @ Lol
        1) My comment mentions nothing about race or ethnicity.
        2) My comment mentions nothing about demonizing entire groups of people.
        3) My comment simply explains the logical reasons why EVERYONE cannot be let in ANYWHERE (whether it’s a college, job, subway car or, in this case, a country).

      3. Sensible FCRH Alum


        As I said in my first comment, I voted for Hillary. 😉 I’ve never read Breitbart in my life and can’t stand Trump, but assumptions like yours are what happens when people jump to them instead of having civil discussions.

    2. Sensible FCRH Alum


      Look at it this way: say there are 3 job positions available in a department and 10 people are interviewed. Now, in Extreme Case A, let’s say 2 of them get the job for unfair reasons (i.e. maybe those 2 know the interviewer personally). In Extreme Case B, let’s say all 10 get in; this is also unfair because now the pay and benefits have to be divided among 10 instead of 2. That’s why the fairest option remains that the 2 who get the job earn it based on their resume, effort, etc, but the 8 still have the option to apply again or search for jobs elsewhere. It’s the best option because, when compared to the other 2 extremes, it’s the fairest.

      1. Lol

        You’re comparing a completely different situation. I’m sorry that you’ve been misled your whole life to believe illegal immigrants are a drain on the economy. The reality is they’re a boon. Look up any report that doesn’t come from Brietbart if we suddenly deported everyone here illegally our economy would suffer immensely. They pay taxes, they work important jobs, they raise families here to give them better opportunities. They love this country because it’s provided them a stable home and now it’s no longer stable. If you still believe that people coming here illegally are stealing countless jobs from better deserving Americans in 2017 you have a lot of catching up to do.

  16. Sensible FCRH Alum

    Hi Brianna,

    I’d like to apologize on behalf of the other Fordham Alum who called you an “embarrassment” and insinuated that you consider undocumented immigrants as “not being human beings.” Don’t let her get to you; she clearly doesn’t know how to discuss issues in a mature manner if she is going to talk down to you in that way. Sadly, I know her and it’s incredibly shocking she didn’t make her comment all about her. Other Fordham Alum, it is you who is the embarrassment if you’re going to directly demean someone hat way.

    Everyone Else,

    If you get past nitpicking whether or not this is a well-written article and ignore your gut reaction of “everything I disagree with must be rascist”, you need to learn how to be pragmatic and sensible. The fact that it seems so crazy and unheard of that *gasp* people who come into a country ILLEGALLY should not receive the same rights or treatments as those who do so LEGALLY is absurd. Understanding this does NOT in any way mean this author doesn’t see undocumented immigrants as inhuman. The term “illegal immigrants” means “illegally here” ,not “illegally human” as I’ve seen ridiculously posted elsewhere. Also,now may be a good time for u to remember that it was Democratic president Obama who deported the highest amount of illegal immigrants in recent years. 😉

    Peace and Love,
    A Hillary Supporter (surprised? Don’t be. Stop putting people in boxes)

    1. Brianna lyman

      Perfectly said, very mature! I indeed just notified the student who insinuated I view illegals as basic monsters that in no way do I, and in fact I commend their handwork and determination, and that my issue lies with the law. Glad to know that there are people like you who, even if you do disagree, know how to maturely discuss your grievances, thank you!

  17. FCRH alum

    This freshman is an embarrassment to the IPE degree program.
    Heads up, Freshie: take Professor Gilbert’s “International Immigration” course to fully understand how illegal immigration to *all* countries (not just the United States) positively affects these nations’ economies and *why* these people decide to take the “illegal” path to do so. Spoiler: it’s because they can’t wait. Nor do they have the resources to actually pay for the whole clearance.
    Taking this class will also teach you to view immigrants as actual human beings and not the scum your conservative upbringing has led you to believe them to be.
    You’re at Fordham, so take a look around. Many of your peers are the children of (or might actually be!!!!) illegal immigrants. If you know that about them, how does that make you feel? Do you feel like their life (/lives, lives of their loved ones) is (/are) suddenly invalid? How do you think this will make them feel? Then again, you obviously don’t care. These people aren’t actually human beings to you.
    “Men and women for others” my ass.

    1. Brianna lyman

      Hi there, normally I wouldn’t respond to comments, but in a few instances I feel I should. First I would like to say thank you for reading my article, because despite your opinion on it, you gave it one more view 🙂 However, although there may be positive attributes that come along with illegal immigration there are negative ones as well. Justifying people breaking the law is something I have a hard time doing, although I can understand it sometimes. In fact, I think our immigration system does require a lengthy process and wait time, but it is necessary in order to ensure we allow immigrants to come here who will hopefully better the United States. Your judgement on my conservative upbringing is wrong, and in fact, quite rude. I don’t look at a human any less because they came here illegally, I actually think that they are hard workers who in most cases bust their a**(excuse my language) and try really hard to give themselves and their families a better life. However, that is not justification enough for breaking the law for me. So no, I, and most conservatives, do not look at these people as “scum”, we just happen to appreciate our laws and hope that they will be upheld by all. Your attempt to depict me as some monster is wrong, for you don’t know me or my beliefs. These people are human beings, they are not invalid, they are not monsters, they just happened to have broken the law, and that is where I draw my grievances. I hope you can understand that.

      1. kquinliskfordhamedu

        Hi Brianna,

        I think people are upset because you’re article is not supported by sound sources—or any sources at all it appears. it would be more effective if you could reference tangible evidence to bolster your beliefs. Without the support of facts, this is a close-minded think piece.

      2. Amalia

        I think the frustration this commenter (and most of the other commenters here) are expressing is that you haven’t considered why these people are breaking the law. There’s a surface level answer – because they want a better lives for themselves and their families – which you seem to understand. But that logic needs to get pushed further – they are seeking a better lives, in many cases, due to horrific violence and fear. They are unable to immigrate legally because of a lack of funds and time at the very least, which doesn’t account for how labyrinthine and bureaucratic the immigration process is. That’s why you’re being called cold-hearted – because the idea people could be fleeing from danger and violence to protect themselves and are physically UNABLE to do so in a legal and timely way is insufficient for you to give up your intellectualism about the way things “should” be done.

        Ideally, there SHOULD be no violence to flee from, and the immigration process – which is not just rigorous, as you have stated, but in many cases, impossible – should be both safe and easy. But until that happens, empathy for those who are fleeing is necessary, not just sympathy. You seem to have a great deal of sympathy for these people. But ultimately, you DO look at people differently because they came to America through illegal means – otherwise you wouldn’t have written an article about it. If you can understand that these are human beings much like you and your family, you can understand that they would like to be legal citizens of the United States. But that simply isn’t a reality for many, many people. Is it truly the moral and ethical thing to deport these people? Is it moral to take away their cars, as you propose, even though they have paid for them?

        Much of this just needs to be pushed further. Why are these people fleeing, why are they immigrating illegally, and what is the moral response to this issue?

      3. Frustrated FCRH 'Alum

        Brianna, since you appear to have such a Javertian view of the law, I certainly hope you’ve never broken the law! I can only assume your classmates NEVER see you out at Mugz, Howl, etc. on the weekend…

    1. Brianna lyman

      Thank you I am well aware I was implying that whether an immigrant comes from anywhere south of the border if they do it illegally it is wrong.

      1. Fact Checker

        Lol I’m skeptical thats what you meant with the sense “Mexico or another South American country” but okay. Also could you answer the question for me of why illegal immigration is a bad thing? Ive seen no evidence it hurts the economy? Also I dont think you really ever fully developed the point of what the downside is of granting amnesty?

        P.S Steve Bannon the architect of Trump’s immigration policy has repeatedly said he is against immigration legal or non. Interested in your take?

  18. Karen

    Wow – Why can’t anyone tolerate an opinion different than their own without screaming racist. Of course the minute I say that I understand the writer’s point of view I will be called names as well. Thank you for allowing another point of view to be written.

  19. Frustrated Student

    I understand that the Ram wants to include various opinions and not restrict freedom of speech, but the publication needs to stop allowing blatant xenophobic and racist articles to be published. These articles lack fact (“since they do not pay taxes”), are poorly written, and possess narrow point-of-views. There are ways to approach topics, such as immigration, without coming off as an insular person. These nonsensical opinion articles not only make the student population look small-minded, but also make us look like we’ve learned nothing that our Jesuit education is supposed to be teaching us (i.e. the Huffington Post’s response to the ‘Check Your Liberal Privilege Article’).

    1. Brianna lyman

      Hi there, first I would like to say that I completely understand if you do not share the same views as me, that is the beauty of this country. However, this article does not make the student population look small minded, rather, it gives the ability for students like myself to express our points of views and opinions, a fundamental aspect of this school and of the country. However, I would like to note that the Fordham Ram reserves the right to refuse publication when deemed necessary, and evidently the Fordham Ram reviewed my article, and although they may not have agreed with what I said, they nonetheless allowed it to be published for the sole fact that there is nothing racist in here. This article touches upon the illegal immigration problem that we have in this country, and just one of many possible solutions to fix this crisis. This article is not xenophobic simply because you disagree with it. Nowhere in this article did I attack a race, I instead wrote of how we have an illegal immigration problem, whether those people come from Mexico or another South American country, I reserve my right to express my opinion on such criminal activity(because illegal is illegal). For you to call me narrow minded all because we don’t share the same view makes you narrow minded, for it seems you are unwilling to accept that others have different opinions. Still, thanks for reading my article and giving it views 🙂

      1. Frustrated Student

        Thanks for your response. My problem with your article is that I believe that you do come off as insular in the way that it was written that could have been resolved if you had been more specific in your use of language because it was rather general. I agree that illegal immigration is a problem that the United States faces and that the hiring of illegal immigrants does people to the US illegally, that I am not disagreeing with you on. Perhaps, my assumption that you were mainly referring to immigrants from South and Central America was wrong. However, since the Trump administration has been outspoken about their deportation of mainly immigrants from South and Central America, I think it was a fair assumption for me to make given the current political climate. I think you should have made a disclaimer in your article along the lines of “I’m not exclusively talking about a certain group of immigrants, but ones from Asia, Europe, etc.” and this would have eliminated people from referring to your article as “xenophobic.” Obviously, things can be lost in translation when certain aspects of an article are not fully fleshed out. Lastly, I’m disappointed in the Ram for publishing articles that have multiple instances of grammatical errors and ones that do promote an “us vs. them” mentality when it comes to immigration and minority groups (not just racial, but religious and economic classes). As an individual who has been heavily involved in local and international service for the past eight years, I’m just rather tired of such opinion articles contributing to a sort-of ‘small-minded’ mentality that I find pervasive in the Fordham community especially when considering the community in which we live. Obviously, that’s my personal opinion and maybe I’m not giving the current student population enough credit. At the end of the day, there will always be illegal immigration no matter what laws are put into place. While yes these practices are illegal, I believe that the first step our country must take into consideration and understand why people are risking their lives to come here and work menial jobs with no benefits. What are the political and social climates of their home countries? Why are *children* even risking their lives for a “better life” in the United States? I hardly find my perspective to be as “narrow-minded” as what you’re saying it is.

      2. Frustrated Student

        *My problem with your article is that I believe that you do come off as insular in the way that it was written, which could have been resolved if you had been more specific in your use of language because it was rather general.

    2. Frustrated Student

      Note after a second read: This is also a very classist piece in that it doesn’t take into account the financial hardship that comes with immigration. Also, when she says that immigrants must be able to prove that they can speak or understand English. . . why aren’t you calling for more Americans to learn how to speak Spanish? By 2050, it is projected that around 35-40% of the US population will be comprised of Spanish speakers. Maybe, the problem is that too many Americans aren’t willing to accept how increasingly multicultural our country is, which is baffling to me (especially in New York City).

      1. Brianna lyman

        I actually think it is very useful for Americans to know Spanish, however being that English is a commonly spoken language, it is important for anyone here to understand the basics, say in the event of having to speak to a police officer, a doctor, an employer, etc… Of course there is hardships that come along with immigration, financial being one of the most prominent, however that is not a justifiable excuse as to why we should just make an easy path to citizenship for the 11 million people who deliberately broke the law. Millions of natural born citizens struggle with finances, and yet the path to help is a long, hard road, and so it is hard to help 11 million people when we have other financial problems plaguing the United States. Once again, do I think that deporting 11 million people is feasible? Absolutely not, it would be extremely expensive and require effort that is needed elsewhere. So I think the fair thing to do is to help them obtain citizenship but they have to have some kind of consequence for breaking the law. People are jailed for selling weed, they suffer the consequences, so should anyone else who breaks a law.

    3. Brianna lyman

      Quickly speaking on grammatical errors, I actually noticed a few however when I check back to the original copy of my article it seems that when the paper was edited part of a sentence had actually been deleted, making me sentence look , in plain terms, stupid, so that was a simple error which I hope next time will be avoided. However, I understand what you are saying, and I do think that all illegal immigrants, from any part of the world, should receive the same treatment and suffer the same consequences, but definitely a good tip that I will take into consideration for my next article! I don’t think this, nor any of my article for that matter, promote an “us vs. them” mentality, rather, this article promotes a “law vs sympathy” perspective, which I think is important. I once again understand that you do not agree with my opinion and that is awesome, you have the right to formulate your own opinions, however I still think it is wrong for you to suggest my article should not be published simply because it appears to you as “narrow-minded”. However, I can’t change your opinion, so we’ll leave it here, thank you for reading my article and taking an interest, even if you didn’t agree! Enjoy your day!

    4. Brianna lyman

      I would just like to point out that the incorrect version of my article had been posted and has been corrected for the most part, in which I said that illegals “may avoid paying taxes”, not that they do not, so hopefully that clears that up!!

  20. Amalia

    This would be embarrassing in its racism alone, but it’s also illogical, poorly written, and insulting to the intelligence of the readership of the Ram. If the Ram wants to be taken seriously as a publication, they’ve got to stop publishing this nonsense.


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