Monday, March 20, 2017

Anti-Immigrant Hypocrisy

As the South Korean economy continues to stagnate, a backlash against unskilled foreign labor is growing:
"'Globalization and the possibilities of travel and relocation divide the world into three groups of countries: Poor countries where the majority supports immigration, the middle and upper Income countries where the majority is in opposition to immigration and the rich whose majorities are divided between supporting and opposing nations,' said Gallup. Korea was categorized under the middle and upper Income countries.
Government data showed that the number of foreign workers in the country has been rising fast. The number of foreign workers registered with the government rose from 791,000 in 2012 to 962,000 last year, up 21.6 percent, according to the government. Officials predict that there are about an additional 300,000 foreign workers here illegally. 
In Korea, there are rising conflicts in the country as some say foreigners are taking away jobs for locals, while others believe foreign workers are essential to the country."
Picking vegetables and working on factory floors is hard work, full stop, and in a country where 98% of the population has a junior college degree or better it's easy to see why these less prestigious jobs are often hard to fill with native Koreans.

But with a laughably abysmal minimum wage of $5.70 an hour, it's sheer hypocrisy to blame foreign workers for filling the inevitable gaps in the farming, construction, and service industries.

The connections to the current situation in America are obvious.  Immigrants and foreign workers boost economies and richer countries should be grateful to have their willingness to work back-breaking and/or menial jobs.

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