'Immigrants will be the job creators of tomorrow': Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg goes public with backing of immigration reform
Made his remarks at San Francisco screening of documentary by activist and journalist Jose Antonio Vargas
Disputed the notion that Silicon Valley leaders are just trying to secure more H1B visas for high-tech workers
He said U.S. needs to embrace immigrants if it is to get ahead economically
He has been teaching entrepreneurship classes and is saddened by limited further education opportunities for his students without documentation
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg spoke out publicly for the first time on Monday in favor of immigration reform, an issue he's been working on behind the scenes for several months.
The 29-year-old billionaire made his remarks in San Francisco at the debut screening of 'Documented,' an autobiographical documentary by activist and journalist Jose Antonio Vargas.
Jose Antonio Vargas is the first Mexican illegal alien the media has been able to discover in many years of trying with adequate journalistic / self-publicizing talent. Not surprisingly, he's gay. More surprisingly, the Establishment couldn't even find an actual Mexican. Vargas is Filipino.
Wearing his trademark hoodie and sneakers, Zuckerberg disputed the notion that he and other Silicon Valley leaders are just trying to secure more H1B visas for high-tech workers.
'This is something that we believe is really important for the future of our country - and for us to do what's right,' Zuckerberg told several hundred attendees, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.
Zuckerberg and his former Harvard University roommate Joe Green recently founded the organization Fwd.us to advocate for a pathway to citizenship for nearly 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.
... The Facebook Inc. founder said he first became aware of the need to change the immigration system while volunteering to teach a class on entrepreneurship at a Menlo Park school. Many of the students had been brought into the U.S. illegally.
'No matter where they were born, (these students) are going to be tomorrow's entrepreneurs and people creating jobs in this country,' he told the audience.
Granted, their legal uncles and great-uncles who have been living in California for generations haven't done much in Silicon Valley, but everything is going to change right now. After all, what do I, Mark Zuckerberg, personally want more than more competition? If only they were legalized, Mexican illegal aliens will kick my ass in the tech marketplace, and what do I like more than losing money?
Of Jewish extraction, Zuckerberg's interest in immigration stems from the fact that his own great-grandparents arrived as immigrants via Ellis Island, to America, coupled with his experience teaching entrepreneurship at an after-school program. ...
'My great-grandparents came through Ellis Island.
'My grandfathers were a mailman and a police officer.
'My parents are doctors. I started a company.
'None of this could have happened without a welcoming immigration policy, a great education system and the world’s leading scientific community that created the internet.'
See, I'm not making this up about Ellis Island Schmaltz.
At the top of the Fwd.us website it explains in bite-sized facts just why immigration is important to the future of America and reminds users that: '40 per cent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children'
Fortune 500 firms? Where were they immigrants from? Aberdeen?
and that '57% of engineering grad students are immigrants. Many will have to leave if we don’t pass comprehensive immigration reform.'
Zuckerberg also called for higher standards and accountability in schools and increased focus on learning about science, technology, engineering and maths.
Today's knowledge and ideas-based economy, the 28-year-old Harvard dropout wrote, is very different from the economy of the 20th century that was based on natural resources, industrial machines and labor.
So, let's legalize the illegals so they can start inventing lots of new high tech.