Bill Richardson: How is the European immigration debate different?

Question: How is the European immigration debate different?

Bill Richardson:

 Well it’s basically the same. You know it’s a fear of people to those that maybe are gonna take their jobs; in some cases that look different. But the reality is that immigrants many times are coming to another country certainly not to be terrorists; certainly not to be leaders; but simply to feed their families. It’s an economic issue. And movements in Europe where, for instance, in Southern Europe with Turkey trying to become a part of the European Union; with countries like Morocco, countries like Spain that are trying to become part of Europe. Refugees from those countries or immigrants from those countries have difficulty. And it takes a process for them to be accepted. And so the movements are similar. However, I think most have found that if you bring immigrants out of the shadows; if you set proper standards for citizenship and behavior; and you . . . you treat people like human beings – you don’t demonize them – that your social fabric as a country is strengthened in Europe and in America.

Recorded on: 11/20/07

 

Bringing immigrants out of the shadows, on both sides of the pond.

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