The April 21 Maine Voices column, which claimed to offer facts about immigration, presented misleading information:

 “Reducing immigration protects jobs and wages for everyone.” Immigrant workers are the only people who are willing to do many of the low-paying and terribly demanding jobs in agriculture, domestic services and health care upon which the infrastructure of our nation depends. They are taking the jobs that native-born people expect to be done but don’t want to do themselves.

 “Immigrants are currently a huge financial drain.” In 2007, the Congressional Budget Office reported that “over the past two decades … tax revenues of all types generated by immigrants – both legal and unauthorized – exceed the cost of the services they use.” In 2013, the chief actuary of the Social Security Administration told The New York Times that undocumented workers have contributed close to 10 percent ($300 billion) of the Social Security Trust Fund.

 “There’s no excuse for any illegal workers picking our produce.” So who’s going to do it? Even raising farm wages significantly for decades has not attracted native-born workers to jobs with such difficult working conditions. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, “about half of the hired workers employed in U.S. crop agriculture were unauthorized,” so “any potential immigration reform could have significant impacts on the U.S. fruit and vegetable industry.” The National Milk Producers Federation has warned that milk prices would increase by 61 percent if its immigrant labor force were eliminated.

The writer, Jonette Christian, simply missed the point that immigrants strengthen and enrich our country. The inhumane practice of destroying families by deporting people who pose no threat to the U.S. and have lived as model neighbors is not what makes America great; it makes America cruel and abusive. In addition to being morally reprehensible, it is bad for our nation’s economy.

The Rev. Robert Moore