The Republican Georgia legislature finally got its way and passed an anti-immigrant law designed to keep out those illegal Hispanic immigrants (and legal ones) they said were swamping the state, committing crimes and taking tons of good jobs from red blooded true conservative native born Americans and doing all kinds of other bothersome things.
Well, it looks like the law is beginning to work even before it goes into effect in June.
Georgia fields are filled with squash, peppers, onions, peaches and a host of other early crops ready to be harvested. Problem? Georgia farmers can’t find anyone to do the work. Migrant workers have decided if Georgia is going to harass them about their immigration status, they will just bypass the state.
Georgia farmers try to get locals to work in the fields but get few takers. R. T. Stanley, one local farmer, told Georgia Public Radio (GPR) he’s willing to pay up to $200 a day to experienced workers willing to work in his fields eight hours or more clipping, bending and lifting in the Georgia humidity and heat but he gets few takers from the local unemployed. "They just don't want to do this hard work. And they'll tell you right quick," he says. "I have 'em to come out and work for two hours and they said, 'I'm not doing this. It's too hard.' "
Stanley was already having problems finding enough workers before the Repubs passed their law. Now the situation is even worse. "I got my livelihood on the line," he told GPR. "If I don't harvest these onions, I'll lose my farm."
Charles Hall, executive director of the Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association, estimates that Georgia farmers have as little as half the workers they need to harvest their crops and that crops worth as much as $300 million could be at risk this year.
Georgia Republicans say it’s a small price to pay to get rid of the illegals (or, do they really mean get rid of the Hispanics and other people who look different and sound different?)
So, when you find yourself paying more for vegetables this spring and summer, keep in mind that a whole lot of them rotted in the fields because Georgia farmers couldn’t find workers to harvest them.
Thank the Georgia Republican legislators for this disaster.
Read more on the Georgia immigration law and the plight of Georgia farmers here: