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Readers React: Why not lift up millions of struggling Americans before admitting more refugees?

A view of the Statue of Liberty on Aug. 8, 2017.
(Drew Angerer / Getty Images)

To the editor: My heart goes out to people who are forced to flee violence and oppression. I think it’s wonderful that our country welcomes (and rescues) them. (“Refugees don’t drain America’s economy. They revitalize it,” Opinion, Feb. 12)

However, while those who have fled devastatingly low standards of living help our economy in the long run, it takes a while for them to attain the education and other necessities to start contributing. Meanwhile, millions of Americans live on the fringe, and new arrivals give them fierce competition for jobs, housing, social services and more.

If this whole game plan is going to be so beneficial to our country, and we have a “wealth of research and data” to prove it, why not figure a way to protect the struggling class in the meantime? Why don’t we use some of our research to help those who probably will not reap the rewards of the eventual economic improvement?

It’s not that I lack compassion for newcomers who just want to become Americans, it’s just that I think we need to look at this from every angle.

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Patricia Bransfield, Los Osos, Calif.

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To the editor: Tim Breene argues persuasively that President Trump’s drive to curtail legal immigration is at best ill advised and at worst mean-spirited. But there is more.

The United States is not the greatest country in world by coincidence. From its early days, only the bravest, the strongest, the brightest and the most resolute from around the world dared to abandon their ancestral homes for this country. Is it any wonder then that their descendants embodied those traits and passed them on from one generation to the next?

What purpose can possibly be served by limiting the flow of these kinds of people to our country?

Michael Steiniger, Sherman Oaks

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