What do you do with an article like this on CNN? They find one guy who is leaving, then cite a load of statistics and a scholar who says people are not leaving. Yet the headline is "Bad Economy Forcing Immigrants to Reconsider U.S."
Pablo is an illegal immigrant from Guatemala who came to the United States to support his wife and five sons back home. When he arrived, construction jobs were plentiful. Over the last year, he says, he's worked three days.
For some immigrants, the experts say, the reasons for toughing out the U.S. economic recession outweigh the reasons for leaving, including:
• One or two days of work per month at $8 an hour is often better than what they can make back home;
• Tougher border enforcement along the U.S.-Mexico border has made it harder for them to return once they leave;
• Smuggling costs to get into the United States from Mexico have skyrocketed from about $1,500 three years ago to about $6,000 today.
"I'm not convinced it's a tidal wave of exodus," Valenzuela said. "There really is a fear mentality [of leaving], and as a result many immigrants are buckling down -- that is they're hiding or living in the shadows of our law. So they think more than twice about whether or not they want to go back to their country of origin, because they know very well that it's going to be extremely difficult and very expensive to come back if they want to pursue their dream."
To repeat, there is no exodus.