Why, given all the great benefits that wave after wave of immigrants have brought to our country, why would now the conservative Republican leadership in the Senate ever want to cut back from present levels of legal immigration? In fact given the numbers of peoples who still want to come here shouldn’t we want to increase their numbers? For to read American History is to read the history of immigration to our shores during hundreds of years right up until today. That’s who we are, as is often said. Don’t we want this to continue to be who we are at our best?
Well some of us don’t. President Trump for one. Conservative Senators for others. Fox News, and the loud mouths on the talk shows, Sean Hannity, Lou Dobbs and the many others. And in particular I’m thinking of such Senate nativist and bigoted individuals like Tom Cotton of Arkansas (given his education at liberal institutions he ought to know better). Sen. Tom Cotton was one of the lawmakers who introduced the Senate bill based on Trump’s nativist and white supremacy plan, describing it as a “best and final offer.”
Tom Cotton, of course, speaks for no one but himself, although in what he says about a “best and final offer” he would have it that he speaks, while speaking for the United States Senate, for the whole country. He doesn’t of course. Hopefully with the fall of Trump Cotton too will fall and disappear. As will Lankford of Oklahoma, Hannity of Fox, and Mark Meadows (a Congressman from North Carolina) from the Freedom Caucus. The Caucus would see itself defending religious freedom, no one knowing yet what that might mean. In fact their freedom of religion is no freedom at all. Rather with their “freedom” they are only empowering themselves to reject the freedom of others. The result being that they are simply rejecting much of the real progress we have made, undoing the real freedoms we have achieved, those regarding a woman’s right to choose, of same sex couples to marry, and of the LGBTQ individuals among us to enjoy full and equal rights.
According to an analysis by the Center of American Entrepreneurship:
1. 43% of the Fortune 500 companies in 2017 (the 500 largest US companies measured by sales revenues last year) were founded or co-founded by an immigrant or the child of an immigrant (see graphic above).
2. The occurrence of first- or second-generation immigrant founders is significantly higher among the largest Fortune 500 companies, accounting for 52% (and 13) of the top 25 firms and 57% (and 20) of the top 35 firms.
3. Immigrant-founded Fortune 500 firms are headquartered in 33 of the 50 states, employ 12.8 million people worldwide, and accounted for $5.3 trillion in global revenue in 2016.
Research demonstrates the Importance of immigrants to the creation and growth of America’s largest and most valuable companies.
4. Examples of immigrant founders or second-generation immigrant founders include:
- Steve Jobs (Apple), second-generation of immigrant parents from Syria
- Alexander Graham Bell (AT&T), immigrant from Scotland
- Henry Ford (Ford Motor Co.), second generation of immigrant parents from Ireland
- Jeff Bezos (Amazon), second generation of immigrant parents from Cuba
- Bernie Marcus (Home Depot), second generation of immigrant parents from Russia
- Sergey Brin (Alphabet/Google), immigrant from Russia
- Eduardo Saverin (Facebook), immigrant from Brazil
- John W. Nordstrom (Nordstrom’s), immigrant from Sweden
- Elon Musk (Tesla), immigrant from South Africa
- Jerry Yang (Yahoo), immigrant from Taiwan
- Marc Randolph (Netflix), second generation of immigrant parents from Austria
- Pierre Omidyar (eBay), immigrant from France