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To the editor:

A recent letter from a self-described moderate Republican entitled “Fact-Checking” suggests I need to do some regarding the Vietnam War and immigration. To begin with, I said conservatives were wrong on Vietnam without any mention of party.  

As I recall, the only voices opposing our involvement in Vietnam were liberals Eugene McCarthy, George McGovern, Jacob Javits, Bella Abzug, Ed Koch and Robert Kennedy, to name a few. No conservative publicly opposed the war.

With regard to immigration, the author offers an anecdote of seeing many day-laborers waiting idly, suggestive of a lack of jobs for immigrants. Since it is illegal to hire undocumented workers, it is impossible to know whether or not these folks could find work. 

Here’s my anecdote. Today I visited a diner, a McDonald's, a Lowe’s and a Walmart; all four had help-wanted signs with application forms and online instructions.

Where I agree is my critic’s statement “immigration is fine when done correctly.” According to a June 2019 study, the conservative Cato Institute found it took 5.75 years on average for family-sponsored and employment-based immigrants to get green cards. Cato also pointed out that this average includes “no-wait” applicants.  

The average wait for migrants from India, Mexico and the Philippines was over eight years and growing. The study’s author, David J. Bier, stated “Without significant reforms, wait times will become impossibly long for these immigrants. Altogether, about 675,000 would‐​be legal immigrants … would die without seeing a green card if they refused to give up and stayed in the line indefinitely.”

It then takes another 7.2 years to become naturalized after getting a green card. In other words, those on the “fast-track” wait 13 to 16 years from entry to citizenship.  If this describes immigration “done correctly,” please let me know the definition of broken.

Joseph Cannisi


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