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They Take Our Jobs!: And 20 Other Myths about Immigration Paperback – June 1, 2007
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"You've heard it all before: Immigrants take away jobs from Americans. They drive down wages, don't pay taxes and yet benefit from public services. But as Chomsky demonstrates, these are all myths, if not outright lies. She not only demolishes virtually every myth about immigrants and immigration to the U.S., she offers policymakers and activists solutions for tackling many of the issues created by globalization and an immigration policy grounded in falsehoods, and in so doing destroys the greatest myth of all: that nothing can be done."—Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination
"Finally, a concise and comprehensive breakdown of the most prevalent misconceptions about immigration. Avi Chomsky provides not only practical ammunition for the pundit wars, but also real thinking about the intersection of migration and the history of race and rights in the U.S. It's the definitive field guide to today's immigration debate."—Tram Nguyen, executive editor of Colorlines magazine and author of We Are All Suspects Now
"Avi Chomsky’s new book, They Take Our Jobs! is a welcome addition to the literature and tools needed to inform the current debate on immigration. In identifying more than 20 "myths" about immigration, the author brings readers through an accessible discussion that includes history, politics, economics and social analysis to challenge these myths and more. At a time when we desperately need to shift the public discourse in the U.S. and elsewhere, to include a more humane and informed perspective on the process of immigration and the lives of migrants and their families, Chomsky’s book provides us all with a much-needed sense of history and justice—and injustice—that must be included as we struggle for fair and humane immigration policies." —Catherine Tactaquin, Executive Director, National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights
From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
The interesting thing about these misperceptions is that they all have a ring of plausibility, and it's to Chomsky's credit that she takes them seriously enough to examine them in detail. Moreover, her examination isn't a simplistic "no, that's wrong" kind of approach. One of the best qualities of her treatment is that she helps the reader to put claims about immigration into a broader context.
For example, Chomsky points out that while it's true that real wages for laborers are dropping in this country, it isn't because immigrants are driving them down. It's because of the last few years' general flow of wealth in the U.S. towards the top, which is leaving almost everyone except the very wealthiest in the lurch. Or what about the misperception that immigrants won't assimilate into our culture and hence are jeopardizing our national identity? Chomsky offers statistics that show that immigrants of color in fact do try to assimilate just as much as white ones, but that assimilation for them is complicated by the fact that it almost always means "downward mobility."
Chomsky's book is clearly written from a progressive viewpoint, and her conclusions, I'm sure, will anger many.Read more ›
For example, Myth 19 states that "countries need to control who goes in and out." The author proceeds to fill the chapter with a history of the United States' attemps to control the numbers of racial minorities in the country, particularly by means of sterilization of Native and African Americans and Puerto Ricans(i.e., not immigrants, ironically). I assume the author is implying that #19 is merely and always a smokescreen for racism, neither something that anyone could ever legitimately believe nor something that ever plays any part whatsoever in immigration considerations, because whether countries actually do or do not need to control who goes in and out is never discussed at all. In other words, Chomsky is calling something a myth without actually providing evidence that it is a myth, i.e., not true.
Basically, the author does not intend to prove some ideas as untrue so much as implicitly claim that the ideas are (presumably always) a product of racism and/or the First World's grab for money and power.
A few parts of the book were just ridiculous appeals to emotion - or, I hope that's what is was meant to be, because it certainly did not appeal to logic. At one or two points, Chomsky writes that immigrants are penalized "just for existing." No, they're penalized for existing in an illegal status. Border Patrol or whoever is not going to come after them while they are "existing" outside of its jurisdiction.Read more ›
In "Take Take Our Jobs! and 20 Other Myths about Immigration" (264 pages), author Aviva Chomsky (an outspoken advocate of immigrants' rights, primarily illegal immigrants) tackles an issue that has become an emotional issue and examines the past and today. Even though I disagree with a few of the basic premises the author has about America in general (such as it being a white Anglo-saxon society bent on imposing its will on other countries), I do agree with the author's premise that (i) immigration is a good thing for the country as a whole, even if it is "illegal" in certain aspects and (ii) immigration policy has been a mess. Let's be honest: we're not going to expell 12 million illegal immigrants currently in the country. For one, they do jobs nobody else wants to do, and for another, it's completely impractical, if not impossible. The other aspect is that we desperatly need more legal immigrants from places like India and China, filling gaps that we have in the business community, as there are simply not enough US college grads for the needs we have. Let's face it, we are not primarily a manufacturing society anymore, but a service soceity. The current quotas for such immigrants are woefully inadequate, and are hurting our economy.
Our congressional leaders, make that "leaders", in Washington have done a horrible job in addressing this issue. President Bush has tried to make some sense of it, and was shut down, primarily by his own party no less!Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is crap. Huge disappointment. I am a big fan of Noam Chomsky but not his daughter. As a blue collar worker, I saw nearly every co-worker I grew up with in construction... Read morePublished 5 months ago by jon
How many books does this lady need to write about the same opinion ? We get it already! Borders are evil, white people are evil, laws are racist . Gotcha. Read morePublished 6 months ago by John Monroe
I would recommend this book to anyone who wishes to truly understand immigration in this country. It is an eye opening and well researched book!Published 7 months ago by Drabick Arias
The author takes each one of these shallow one liners, usually used by shallow minded people, and provides facts and solid arguments disproving each and every one.Published 13 months ago by Manuel A. Rodriguez
Bought this book for an undergraduate book project. I put the assignment off until 1 week before it was due and reluctantly picked up the book. Read morePublished 13 months ago by toledos
I used this book as a source for a college paper. Very clear usable information.Published 15 months ago by Elizabeth Lopez
This effectively explodes the most common xenophobic, racist myths you hear these days.Published 21 months ago by Charles E. Cairns
Great service. Way ahead of schedule. Exactly as promised, exceeded all expectations. Excellent service.Published 21 months ago by Yermo Adams
Aviva Chomsky has woven a horrifying tale of white supremacy from the founding fathers to the current congress, all backed with data, to explain the current immigration problem as... Read morePublished 24 months ago by John S. McGlinn