Millennials, Gen Z and Mass Immigration
Younger people should have more incentive to oppose uncontrolled immigration than anyone else. Firstly, they are now being forced to compete for jobs with a never ending tidal wave of cheap labor from the developing world. This is true for both high school and college graduates. Second, even as they are forced to work for lower wages (pushed down by mass legal and illegal immigration), their ability to save money, pay off debts, buy a home and start a family is being horribly undermined. This is true for both Millennials (born between 1980 and the late 1990s) and Generation Z (born from the late 1990s to mid-2010s), who are finding in their own ways that mass immigration has made their economic and professional life harder and poorer than their Baby Boomer and Gen X parents.
For Boomers, jobs were plentiful, wages were good and things like home ownership or starting a family were taken for granted as things that would easily flow. Young workers in the 1960s and 70s could expect to easily find a job with dignified work and a salary that could support a family comfortably. For a worker who was a college graduate in a white-collar job, this was even more the case. One major advantage young workers in previous decades had over the present-day labor market was little if any competition from foreign-born, low-wage migrants. In 1970, less than 5 percent of the U.S. population was foreign-born, a record low. This meant that our fathers’ and grandfathers’ generation were, realistically, only competing with other Americans, and wages and benefits offered had to be those that Americans could or would work for.
However, things have changed dramatically since then. As the Boomers retire or get very close to it, the workforce their children and grandchildren must work in is much less promising. The foreign-born population of just 9 million in 1970 ballooned to over 44 million in 2021. These workers were often very different from Americans in terms of what they were prepared to work for. Migrants from countries like Guatemala and Haiti will happily work for even the most meager of salaries. This is further multiplied by currency exchanges when they send U.S. dollars back to their home country. Unscrupulous employers have adjusted wages downwards to take advantage of the U.S. workforce being flooded by illegal and legal immigrant workers willing to undercut Americans. In the Midwest, ranch hands and agriculture workers earn less than some of the poorest people in America. Why? Because migrants from poor countries will work for low wages so Americans in towns where agriculture is the main employer must grit their teeth and accept poverty pay to compete.
It is not just fast food workers, ranch hands or construction crews that are subject to this. College graduates are also under fire. Thanks to mass immigration, graduates in the U.S. workforce are subjected to competition from tidal wave levels of mass immigration, especially from heavily populated countries like India and China that generate enormous numbers of college graduates per year. To Boomers, a college degree for their kids would mean they would be all but guaranteed a good job with a good salary. Since graduate workers from India will work for less than an American, however, employers know this, and adjust wages downwards. The average net earnings in India are $1,916 per year compared to $59,000 in the U.S. IT, once a highly-paid sector in America, has seen wages fall to what Harvard Business School delicately calls “no longer exceptional” levels. This has meant that college graduates, already saddled with six-figure debt, must accept this non-exceptional pay, with post-tax earnings in urban areas often barely covering the essentials. The college degree, once a passport to the middle class, is no longer much use in the face of massive, uncontrolled immigration of low-wage graduates.
Young people must face the truth. Without mass immigration, high school graduates would not be competing with low-wage migrants for jobs. Without mass immigration, college graduates would not be competing with low-wage migrants for jobs. Without this competition, both groups of young people would have higher wages, more disposable income and the ability pay off debts, cover bills and start and raise their own families. One of the best ways today’s younger people can have a more dignified life is if large scale immigration is ended.