Comments of the Day:
“It is about time that these American companies are held accountable for their actions. After all, they have been unwilling to pay fair wages to American citizens and instead have paid dirt-low wages to illegal immigrants.”– sam49
“When illegal immigrants provide the backbone of produce production in the United States at costs far below minimum wage, that benefits those legally here. Wave your pom-poms for change all you want, but be sure you understand what you're changing.”– GeorgeFnBush
Arizona can suspend the licenses of Arizona businesses that don't verify that new hires are in the country legally, according to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling. Many CNN.com readers, including self-proclaimed liberals, cheered the ruling.
rosalvaje said, “Hurray for Arizona and coming to a state near you.” ChrisDawg said, “As a liberal, I'm fine with this.” OutNasa said, “This ruling is pro legal immigrant. I applaud it.” NCArmyVet1 said, “We welcome all immigrants who come here legally!” notrolls said, “It looks like even the Supreme Court is capable of grasping the concept that it is illegal to be illegal.”
But JJNOLA said, “Congratulations AZ. You just gave your businesses away to other border states. Guest141414 replied, “Only those that willingly violate federal laws. It's not much of a loss, really.”
Serene1111 said, “They will just jump ship from Arizona and move to other states which don't have the same laws.” VanKrunk replied, “Yes, they already are, and we here in Arizona wish to thank places like Colorado for offering them a nice place to stay.”
Some readers argued over whether American workers will really benefit from the jobs illegal immigrants leave behind. strawberry33 said, “Americans did these jobs before we got overrun with illegals that would do it cheaper.” OutNasa said, “Once illegals are removed from the employment equation, unemployment offices can align the able with part-time gardening jobs while they look for work. There will always be someone to do the work for an illegal.”
But MACVINDANANG replied, “Not true at all! The United Farm Workers of America, a predominantly Hispanic union, launched its ‘Take Our Jobs’ campaign in response to anti-immigrant rhetoric. It offered to place native-born workers in farm jobs. Several thousand Americans responded to the online ad, but only two actually accepted the backbreaking, low-paying jobs.”
Guest141414 said, “Obviously, the wages for the jobs will have to be raised, as businesses cannot hire legal workers for less than minimum wage, as they do when they exploit illegal immigrants. Once that happens, I think you'll be surprised.” Guest said, “This will increase landscaping costs for me.”
Employees in Germany, France, United Kingdom, Brazil and many other industrialized countries enjoy at least four weeks of guaranteed vacation yearly. Employees in the United States might get two weeks plus a handful of holidays, but time off is not required by U.S. law. Why is the United States so down on down time?
GM1966 replied, “Corporate greed. The company I work for offers two weeks' paid vacation but there are too many strings attached to actually take the time off and if you don't use it, you lose it.”
MapleMike said, “As long as America believes that ‘what's good for businesses is good for the country,’ this situation will never change. Corporations have zero interest in improving the health of American society by giving people more vacation. This kind of change can only be mandated by a government.”
DrRational said, “American workers not only vote against their own best interests, they get out in the streets and protest against them. Convinced that unions and regulations are the enemy, we march into dangerous working conditions so our corporate leaders can get ever-larger salaries.“ truth109 said, “Vacation? More and more jobs in America are contract jobs, and these jobs offer no benefits like vacation or health insurance.”
But some readers spoke up for the American model. Savannah2424 said, “There's also the difference between the tax rates in the U.S, and in Europe. Do you want to pay 70% of your income so someone else can have a vacation?” MainStreet76 said, “You have to make sacrifices to make it in America, and yes, vacations are included in those sacrifices.” goodflag said, “I am an American living in Slovenia, and all is not as wonderful as it seems. True, there is lots of vacation, but at a cost. Employers are reluctant to hire because of the heavy demands placed on them per each employee.”
jellomizer said, “American culture has what we do for work as a key part of our self identity. If you ask most Americans to describe themselves the first thing they will say is what type of job they do.”
Those who had experienced other ways of living and working shared their experiences. jezza10000 said, “I'm originally from the UK but live in DC now. In the UK all employers must give four weeks as a minimum, required by law. The land of the 'free' apparently has no free time. I think it's sad how people live for their jobs here, and I get so bored hearing my American friends talking about work all the time."
ffhd1clt said, “When I started traveling for work internationally years ago, I realized the vacation thing was much different outside the USA. I was mostly traveling to South American countries, and the norm in countries like Chile and Argentina is to take a full month off during the summer.”
Weebie said, "I earn 3-4 times doing the same job in Sydney than I would in New York. Americans are some of the lowest paid workers in the world, with some countries such as Poland and Malaysia very close to surpassing the salaries for Americans."
Kynt said, “That's not all. In many European countries people get paid sick leave on top of the 4-6 weeks paid vacation, meaning they can use their vacation for actually recharging their batteries. They don't have to use vacation time when they're too sick to work. In Western Europe every dock worker and truck driver is entitled to paid vacation and sick leave.”
Lightmaster said, “I'm a normal worker in Germany. If I get sick at work I can go home and get paid for the day. If my illness continues, I can get a free medical card from the doctor and stay up to six weeks at home or hospital and get 100% income. Why are you against public health insurance?”
ScottNH said, “A friend of mine was fired for calling in sick too much, was then diagnosed with cancer and is now in end-stage with a month or two left to live. If she had been in France, Israel, Singapore, Denmark, or Japan she would have received medical treatment. Are Americans worth less?”