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Gary is taking a break from blogging. Our guest blogger is Tapster Joe Stewart.


I grew up in Raleigh, graduating from Athens Drive High School in 1982.

The athletic conference (note singular) at the time was the Cap 8 and included (what seemed like) the remote outposts of Fuquay-Varina and Smithfield Selma.
I moved away for a while, and when I returned in 1996 the place had definitely changed, and continues to both in size and diversity of the population.
Just ask state Representative Tom Murry, whose 41st State House District in Wake County contains a significant number of Indian Americans - Morrisville, the heart of Rep. Murry’s district, is home to the Hindu Society of North Carolina.
In fact, Indian Americans are a whopping 16% of the lawful American citizens eligible to cast a ballot for Rep. Murry on election day. 
While most attention in recent years has focused on illegal Hispanic immigrants here in North Carolina, Rep. Murry’s district shows there’s actually far more than that one dynamic to discuss on the topic of how immigration impact local communities like his, given the dramatic growth in our State’s foreign-born population (up by 64% since 2000).
The NC Center for International Understanding (full disclosure: they are a client) is hosting a conference (not advancing a particular policy proposal, but rather providing a forum to allow discussion among all points of view – a review of the list of sponsors highlights that fact) on February 28 entitled ‘Immigration Matters’ at the Hunt Library on NCSU Centennial Campus (
It’s proven to be a timely program, given recent calls for federal immigration reform from both Congressional leaders and the White House.
Consider this: the US Chamber, a business advocacy icon, will speak at this event on the need for reforms to our work visa system – it’s hurting US businesses when skilled positions for which no American worker is available go unfilled because guest workers can’t get the visa to come do the job.
And this isn’t just about high-tech, high-skill positions. It’s about all the service sector jobs there simply won’t be enough American-born workers for (think home health care, the folks needed to take care of all us aging Baby Boomers).
A UN population and workforce study released in 2000 projected that by the end of 2103, due in large part to declining birth rates in America, the labor force growth in the United States will be zero, and by 2020 will have a 17 million shortage of working age people for the jobs available.
So there’s a lot to talk about, and Immigration Matters will be a great opportunity to hear from many different voices on this subject.
By the way: when people ask me, as a ‘native,’ if these changes bother me, I always say ‘this was a great part of North Carolina then, but it’s an outstanding corner of the world now.’


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# dap916
Monday, February 04, 2013 6:36 PM
Well, I'm a "native" as well. No, not an American Indian "native"....just a native of America being born here. So, even though it doesn't bother you that we have well over 13 million illegal immigrants in our country, it bothers me. I have just as much right to be "bothered" about this as you NOT to be "bothered" by it.

Do you seriously believe that in 7 years, we will have17 million "extra" jobs in the U.S. that can't be filled? Really Joe? And, you're honestly citing the UN with some population and workforce study for America??????? The UN?? Joe. C'mon, man.

People like me....and trust me, that's NOT just evil, well-to-do white conservative republicans...believe that immigration in our country's history is what has made our country just so great. And, that was because those immigrants that came here did so to accept our culture and to assimilate into our "way of life" and they came here LEGALLY. They learned our language and they accepted responsibility for themselves. They came here for the OPPORTUNITY to achieve. They didn't come here to taken care of. They came here for the opportunity to take care of themselves. Far different than MOST of those millions and millions of illegal immigrants we have here today.

So, even though you can string together a great set of paragraphs and some lovely feel differently than a great many people in our country.

Now, saying that...I wouldn't put up too big a fight if we came up with some way to get those illegals here in our country now a solid and viable way to become citizens. No, not jumping over those that are here doing it the "right" way...but a way nonetheless. But first, it will all be for naught if we don't FIRST secure the boarder. If we don' doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that we will just have more and more millions here illegally that will then present this very same problem for us in the years to come. First secure the boarder....THEN work with the millions of illegals here currently. THAT'S the only acceptable way to have "meaningful immigration reform". The ONLY way.
# Reaganite
Tuesday, February 05, 2013 9:36 AM
The issue before the country is not ''immigration'' but on the contrary ''illegal immigration'' and amnesty''. There is a big difference.

There are many would-be legal immigrants in many countries who are going through the proper procedures and patiently waiting their turn. Most will realistically never even be allowed to get in the line for approval. Many of these people have education and skills that would be useful in our economy.

Then we have the pushy line-breakers, the illegals who thumbed their noses at the law and came anyway. Most of them are unskilled or at best semi-skilled. 47% of them are on welfare.

Now we have proposals to give preference to the pushy line breakers, the illegals, over those who are trying to do it the right way. That is just wrong. It is immoral and un-American. While Lindsay Grahamnesty and his cohorts claim they will be ''at the back of the line'', that is a lie because most of the would be immigrants who are trying to do it the right way will never even be allowed into the line in the first place. To realy be at the back of the line, the illegals would have to be behind every single person who has applied properly to immigrate to the US from all over the world.

We do need reforms to our immigration laws. The system Canada uses which focuses on whether the skills of the immigrant are useful in the economy, would be far better than our current system. Temporary work permits for Agricultural labor, would also be a win-win for everyone.

One needed reform is to get rid of the citizenship by birth concept. The United States is the only industrialized country with this absolutely insane policy. The most recent one to ditch it was Ireland, which did so in a popular referendum by a landslide margin.

Before any decision is made on what to do with the illegals already infiltrated into our country, we need to secure the border. That was promised in the 1986 amnesty legislation, but while the amnesty itself happened, the border security never did, leading President Reagan to call that legislation one of the greatest mistakes of his Presidency. We do not need to make another similar mistake now.
clarence swinney
# clarence swinney
Tuesday, February 05, 2013 10:05 AM
President Obama said:
“we have to fix it”.
When? Who? How?
I voted for several Democrats. Then reviewed my votes. Every vote was for a Republican.
I went to nearby Democratic Headquarters to ask for an investigation of that machine.
Found no problem.???
Voter denied right to vote-Untrained poll workers—Misapply voter AD and provisional ballot laws—Frantic Voting—Last minutes changes such as new polling sites—Failed voting machines--
Deception phone calls to voters. Long registration lines for early voters.

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