Archived: Facts Are So Stubborn


Ventura County, California –8:00 a.m. — April 15 — The strawberry fields along Highway 101 are jammed with workers picking berries for shipment throughout the United States. A careful look shows us something we already knew, the workers all look like me, not Brad Pitt or Mel Gibson or Will Smith.

Oh, they are shorter with hair thicker and blacker than most.  They aren’t as well dressed as they could be; they don’t read thick books, they live five, ten to a house or apartment. Some are Guatemalan but most are Mexican from Southern Mexico. They are usually 100 percent Indian.

Some among us believe these people are dangerous, even if they are legally here.  The real problem is that most are here illegally. Their critics believe that they are all criminals, that crime is pervasive because of these people.  Believed also is that if these illegally present people weren’t here, unemployed Americans would fill the jobs currently filled by these Indians.

Are the critics right? Does the evidence prove them right? We will use California to examine whether or not these people are right.

The Los Angeles Board of Education voted this week to eliminate 5,400 jobs presently held by legally present citizen workers and teachers.  This action is designed to eliminate a $600 million deficit. So, are illegal’s taking these jobs?

Today, crime is not only going down but in some areas of urban California has gone down to 1967 levels. In case critics don’t understand these lower crime rates concurrent with what they call an “invasion” by these Indians, they should look hard at the statistics and what they show throughout the state.

As a group, therefore, these illegally present people commit fewer crimes against people and property, than the native born American.  If they were crime prone, rates would skyrocket in California every day, not go down.

Critics will demand, where is the proof?  What should be asked is what proof do they offer that lower crime rates don’t exist while record numbers of illegals are present.  It is clear that crime rates are down while illegal alien numbers are increasing.

The same questions can be asked of critics when it comes to unemployment and jobs.

Using the Ventura County strawberry fields as an example, just 40-50 minutes from South Central Los Angeles, home to high rates of native born American chronic unemployment, we have to ask: Why are there thousands of Mexican and Guatemalans on their hands and knees picking berries in Ventura while thousands of native born Americans whine in Los Angeles that they can’t find work.

They look to Barack Obama for help. Whatever they do, they don’t go to Ventura County to work in the fields or to Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego or Imperial Counties where thousands of jobs are offered to anyone every day in fields or orchards. These are hard jobs, hard work.

These people can’t or won’t travel 30-40 miles for work. In contrast the Indians travel 1800-2000 miles for the work South Central Angelinos don’t bother to apply for or accept.  Is it wage rates that are the problem? Would Angelino unemployed commute to Ventura County if the pay was $10 an hour – like it is now– or would they require $15-20 an hour? How about $50.00 an hour?

Certainly there are many Americans who have lost or are losing jobs. We are in a Recession and have been for months. And certainly billions of dollars are being set aside from our printing presses to help these people. That, many think, is what we should do as a country, but does that deliver strawberries to our homes, or walnuts, peaches, pistachios, lettuce, grapes, avocados, cut flowers, tomatoes, potatoes, almonds, asparagus, celery, melons and hundreds of other farm products?

How about the beef, pork and poultry we eat?  How is it that thousands of illegals make their way to slaughterhouses and poultry processing plants throughout the American South and Midwest to work at jobs that USED to be held by native born Americans and European immigrants while native born Americans don’t?

After well-publicized immigration raids in Iowa, did native born flock there to take those open jobs? No, Somalian refugees did, not the unemployed of Chicago or Des Moines.

Let’s look at the American automobile industry.  Thousands of auto workers have lost their jobs over the past two decades. Did they lose their jobs to illegals?

Illegals are not creating a crime wave.  Illegals are not causing American unemployment. Illegals dominate work areas that Americans ignore. These are the facts, just the facts.

Raoul Lowery-Contreras is an author and columnist living in San Diego. His books are available at

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