Skip to comments.Illegal immigration crackdown impacts harvests [Georgia]
Posted on 07/02/2011 12:52:33 PM PDT by La Enchiladita
WRAY, Ga., - One of the toughest laws yet to fight illegal immigration went into effect today in Georgia. A federal judge has temporarily blocked the most controversial provision - requiring police to check the immigration status of suspects who don't have proper identification.
But it is now a felony to use false documentation to apply for a job. CBS News correspondent Mark Strassmann says Georgia farmers have been anticipating this day, and the law is already having a big effect.
In south Georgia, it's a banner year for blackberries - but a bad year for berry farmer Gary Paulk.
"There's a lot of what appear to be good berries," Paulk said. "If we had the workers."
On one corner of this family farm, twenty acres of blackberries rot away.
"This is a healthy field. And it should have been picked," Paulk said. "But there's nobody here."
(Excerpt) Read more at cbsnews.com ...
I prefer blackberries picked from old vines growing wild alongside the road.
We wanted to know more about how Georgia's immigration law came about. The governor's office told us today the state had to impose the law in its own defense. The state estimates illegal immigrants cost Georgia taxpayers more than $2 billion a year. Most of that to pay for the schooling and medical bills of their children.
So much for cheap labor, eh? Come on, you high school and college kids, get out there and pick!
Maybe he should try to hire some people instead of just sitting on his arse and complaining. Probably can’t though because he wants to pay under the table so he can save some money.
Blackberry cobbler! YUM!!
Perhaps if you paid a decent wage you would get Americans to pick your crops. You want to pay illegals a low wage to keep your overhead down instead. I’m willing to pay more in the store for crops raised, picked, and packaged by Americans.
God forbid you have to pay 6 bucks an hour now...
And with all that warning, they still were not able to pay enough to hire unemployed Americans more than willing to pick berries. Of course, legal workers would expect the legal minimum wage. But paying that would be too burdensome.
I don’t understand - even by the low-ball official Federal Government figures, 9.9% of Georgia “workers” are unemployed. Is that not enough folks to pick the darned blackberries? Hello... its better than being a leech and drawing a check from the government for NOT working.
Come on folks - get off your butts and work. And of course, the figures above don’t even include the unemployed who are not looking for work, have dropped off the rolls, or who never have really worked - and just sit on their butts and do nothing while drawing a check.
It doesn’t take a college degree to pick blackberries. The last time the US economy was this bad - folks would gladly line up around the block just for the opportunity to pick these blackberries (or peanuts, or whatever work could be had). What’s the difference? That was before the government have over 50% of the population a check every month.
“Of course, they werent cheap sh*t, slave-loving democrats either.”
Agribusiness is whining big time to the media, because they know the favorable spin they will get. Hey, does that new bill impose penalties on employers of illegals??? I wonder, hmmmm...?????
Put the section 8 to work or short time jail inmates!
Well then let us bring back chain gangs, the prisoners are costing a lot as well, put them to work.
Decent wages attract decent people.
Am I willing to pay more at the grocery store? You’re damned straight I do. Employ my fellow citizens, and I’ll pay you what the berries are worth, including their wages.
Echoes from the past. The same reasons were given by cotton farmers in order to argue against freeing the blacks. Seems like we got beyond that crisis.
Just think the money these guys would save sending these jerks home. They could afford to pay a decent salary and it would save the taxpayer them included a nice chunk of change.
So, if a farming community was using felons (unconvicted felons, that is - sort of like those who in the West Wing) - and they got arrested, I’m supposed to be concerned that this impacts harvests?
Sounds like progress to me.
The youth unemployment rate is between 25-50%.
With young people, you teach work ethic and responsibility. With illegals, you get another generation of berry pickers and a culture that produces every social pathology under the sun.
I keep wondering why farmers don't just use mechanical harvesters?
(And stop calling me Shirley.)
I wonder if he has tried advertising a “pick your own” approach. He would get more per pint than the produce buyers would give him and wouldn’t have to pay anyone to do the picking.
Good point. Thank yew!!
Get all those high-paid nitwits with dumbass job titles who work in the White House, all 565 of ‘em, and ship ‘em down there to do real work.
Say, isn’t Moo-shell an advocate of getting out and gardening....??? Send her too!!
You thought the Mexican - American War was over in 1848, but nooooooooooo. They changed tactics. We won the first battles but we will lose the war. They are infiltrating the USA with people who work harder, for longer hours, for less money and have 5 children to our 1. At the current rate they will be 51% of the population in 75 years and you better speak Spanish because they do not want to learn English.
Their loyalties are to God, family, Mexico in that order. Loyalty to the USA is not even in the top 10.
Mourn the decline and fall of the USA as we knew it because it is going, going, gone! It will be their USA with pigs, dogs and roosters in every yard and non Spanish speaking need not apply. (Of course that last part is pretty much true right now throughout the Southwest, if you do not speak Spanish it is tough to get a job there, very tough.)
How about if you you decriminalized market wages like they have done in restaurants then you wouldn’t have to hire illegals at the real market level.
I usually pick two or three gallons a year, but not enough to go after this year.
The farmer must use a LOT of irrigation.
Whoa, a FReeper must have infiltrated. LOL.
I notice media at local level are showing signs of being fed up with PC too.
Liberalism is fraying at the edges.
I don’t suppose the CBS reporter actually investigated to see if the farmer’s claim is true, or just took his word for it. The “facts” must fit the spin, not the other way around.
“Well then let us bring back chain gangs”
We still have chain gangs in the South. They pick up the roadside trash.
That is the most fun. I remember when I was a young’un, we went up to Beaumont (in CA) to pick our own cherries.
Went to one of our local farmer’s place couple of weeks ago. They had bunches of wonderful strawberries which you could pick yourself at greatly reduced prices. Took my grandson and one of his buddies and everyone picked. Let them sell some to the neighbors and they kept the money they earned. Filled part of the freezer with the rest. Farmer is also going to do self-pick as other things are ready. He still makes money, doesn’t have to hire or supervise employees, lots of folks get fresh fruit and vegetables, the grandson has some extra spending money and everyone is happy.
The farmers are complaining because they can’t get anyone to pick their crops at below market wages.
Thse farmers need to get their act together and pay a decent wage to legal workers.’Cause I can live without blackberries.
Maybe Some of those idle teenagers need a little exercise and rays. You could pay them in cash like you do the illegals, and the kids would have good beginning jobs. When I was a kid, many teenagers worked the berry fields. Why can’t they do it now?
What’s the unemployment rate for Blacks again?
Exactly. Hey Gary, something else to consider: If you have to break the law to do business then you shouldn’t be doing business.
I don’t feel sorry for the farmers.
Except for the fact that our government failed to enforce immigration law because the same farmers, chicken processors, food producers, and US Chamber of Commerce, churches, etc wanted cheap labor and new members at the expense of every American taxpayer. The Dem politicians also wanted beholden voters.
If the farmers had been using legal American workers that were paid a free market wage (enough to entice LEGAL workers to pick fruit) it would have resulted in higher fruit prices but a better and more employed and less costly America.
It also would have resulted in the development of automated mechanical pickers.
Rant: Why are these people “undocumented”. My Filipina wife, after 4 years in the US became an American citizen.I simply went online, printed out the necessary documents, followed their instructions, paid the necessary fees which were not overly burdensome, submitted all to ICE, in stages, and followed the rules regarding the pathway to LEGAL status. What the heck is the problem? Even if you are here illegally, you pay a fine which is not that much, fill out the paperwork and follow the legal steps which are not that hard to understand. What are these people afraid of? Why are they not even willing to try to straighten out their legal status in the US.
I did it. I’m not stupid but I don’t have a huge IQ score (don’t even know or care what that may be).
It’s not that difficult people.
The dry spell has hurt Georgia also. I visited my daughter and her farmer husband. They are doing OK but we drove by miles of drought stunted corn and withered cotton. I smell another See BS story (like the Bush national guard papers or the gas tank fires on trucks) etc. It will take a while but I think the guest worker program will be implemented so we can hire honest seasonal farm workers.
I agree and that is one of the messages I have spoken about. Here in south GA it around 17% unemployment. Now it might cost a little bit more, thus the farmers will have to charge their customers more and so on raising the price of the product, inflation and the re-movement of modern day slave labor, but it would cause an eventual balance of cost in the long run.
This has to be done for the good of all, not just US citizens but those whom are living in the shadows as not quite members of the human race.
Reform is needed but before there can be reform you must control the situation and currently we have no control what so ever. An Immigration is one of the few responsibilities Congress has yet they seam so willing to negate it and grab powers they do not have. Wonder why?
So true. I think a majority of the American people feel that way.
Their loyalties are to God, family, Mexico in that order. Loyalty to the USA is not even in the top 10.
They work hard as illegals because without any major government social services net they have to, but I question if these hordes will work as hard once amnesty is granted. I'd like to see an objective study on those given amnesty under Reagan as to their accomplishments, criminal behavior, and work ethics, etc? These people are going to change our culture to Mexico lite. The USA could support a 10-15% underclass when we were a wealthy producing nation, but we can't support a 30% underclass when we aren't. It will bring us all down.
Concerning loyalty to the USA, I truly question the loyalties of many in our own government.
“Perhaps if you paid a decent wage you would get Americans to pick your crops.”
Yes, but what if they ask more than he can afford to pay to make it worthwhile? Or there arent enough Americans showing up? At some too-high price its not affordable and too low a price the US labor is unavailable. This law does have the effect of raising cost of labor for these farmers vs what they were doing and that puts them at a disadvantage w/ farmers in other states, especially if farmers in other states are using those same illegal aliens to get their crops in. ...
“ ... Martinez is here illegally. She stayed, but her husband left to work farms in Washington state. They wanted to avoid any chance they’d both get arrested.”
... these illegals are moving on to other states.
This is not to say the GA law is bad, but passing it in georgia only will put farmers that used the labor at a disadvantage to other states. It would be different/better if it was done evenly across the nation. The fact that this GA law had an impact telegraphs well the complete and utter failure at the federal level to do its job.
“Im willing to pay more in the store for crops raised, picked, and packaged by Americans.”
It's a great idea. I did that when I was a child.
$10/hour is enough for even my pampered kids. It's a great bootcamp to teach the value of an education and how much better it is than hard labor.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.