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Coast Would Shut Down Without Illegals July 24, 2007

Posted by fitsnews in SC Politics, US Politics.

myrtle beach


FITSNews – July 24, 2007 – Reflections of the early morning sunlight glinted off the windows of the three large buses making their way up Ocean Boulevard, slinking through Myrtle Beach’s famous “Golden Mile” at 7:00 A.M. en route to the massive hotel and condo complexes that start popping up out of the South Carolina beachscape at around 70th Avenue North.

Packed inside of them – and swarming all around them, for that matter – were dozens of female hospitality workers decked out in their hotel uniforms. Some road the buses, others buzzed along behind them in scooters or on bicycles. All of them were Hispanic.

Headed in the opposite direction towards one of the dozens of construction sites along the Grand Strand were truckloads of Hispanic men – their sunglasses on, hard hats at the ready and energy drinks in hand as they prepared for another day stacking bricks on the gargantuan tourist-housing edifaces their mujeres will one day turn up the sheets in.

But it’s not just Hispanics. Up and down the strand at Burger Kings, Shoney’s, Krispy Kremes and thousands of other establishments, the counters are filled with European immigrants.

At the Krispy Kreme on 20th Avenue North, “Xena” (the “Doughnut princess”) packs boxes full of the delicious chocolate-glazed confections for a steady stream of hungry tourists with Ohio, Pennsylvania and Illinois license plates. As she works, she barks orders in her native tongue to three other Slavic girls – each sporting the trademark white Krispy Kreme doughnut-baker hats.

Even at upscale restaurants like the Sea Captain’s House, attractive Russian women wait on tourists and elderly couples enjoying an ocean-view seafood dinner.

Everywhere you go on the Grand Strand these days are immigrant workers.

How many are legal? How many aren’t?

According to Wharton economics professor Bernard Anderson, two-thirds of America’s 12 million illegal immigrants are concentrated in four industries – farming, food service, hospitality and construction.

Take away the farming, and you’ve pretty much got the Grand Strand tourism economy, which accounts for approximately 15% of South Carolina’s total economy.

We’re not human resource experts or anything, but our guess is if the Mitt Romney-Jim DeMint “deport ’em now” crowd had their way, this state’s most important economic subsector would literally grind to a halt …



1. Rob W. - July 24, 2007

Hooray for common sense. Still haven’t heard a good plan for dealing with the glut of open jobs.

2. Earl Capps - July 24, 2007

Being a Lowcountry native, I can find plenty of silver lining in the clouds of a tourism shutdown. Maybe some of these people would finally figure out what those northbound lanes on I-95 were built for – to LEAVE.

Now come on, do you really think those Slavic girls need to leave? After all, they look like us, so they can’t be illegal. If they are, it must be due to some paperwork error, or they are simply vicitms of a government bureaucracy run amok.

The only bad immigrants are those who don’t look like us, didn’t you know that?

3. Raoul - July 24, 2007

The Grand Strand’s tourism economy might grind to a halt.
OR …. the “deport ’em now” tact might just force fat-cat business owners who use illegals as a cheap source of labor to pay a decent, living wage to legal residents who don’t pack five families and all their relatives into one house and can’t afford to pay for day care, groceries, health care, rent, etc. on the $8 or $9 an hour — with no benefits — that the hotel and restaurant owners are paying.

4. Kate Hughey - July 24, 2007

I comletely agree. We have a medium sized family farm in the upstate and without our faithful crews of hispanic immigrants each year we could never harvest. The truth is that, for whatever reason, local populations will not do these kinds of jobs (farming, food service, hospitality and construction) for ANY wage let alone the unrealistic wage that the immigration bills currently uner discussion require that we pay. I don’t have the answer or a solution but I do know that “deporting them all now” would simply create more problems than solve.

5. FITSNews - July 24, 2007


Sic Willie would like to know if he can help you and pa harvest the last of the winter wheat.


6. Juanita y Carlos - July 24, 2007

Señor Will. Nuestros niños necesitan una buena educación mientras que limpiamos hoteles y trabajamos en campos. Usted sabe que los vouchers nunca ayudarán a nuestros niños. Fije por favor los problemas verdaderos con educación y pare el scam del vouchers.

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