The Common Good

'Jose Illegal' is a Lie

It's an e-mail to make your blood boil.

A recent e-mail forward contrasts the lives and lifestyles of hypothetical workers "Joe Legal" and "Jose Illegal." After outlining how each man's legal status affects his budget, the e-mail concludes that Jose Illegal is not only leading the high life as an undocumented worker in the U.S., but is actually enjoying it at Joe Legal's expense. An infuriating tale indeed! Yet what infuriates me most is that the e-mail is filled with lies and is based on false assumptions.

Take, for example, the e-mail's initial claim:

"Joe Legal" works in construction, has a Social Security Number, and makes $25.00 per hour with payroll taxes deducted

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