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In an updated, 2010 version of his earlier 1996 presentation, NumbersUSA Executive Director and founder Roy Beck illustrates the fallacy of the notion that the United States is capable of having any significant impact on the poor populations of the world through immigration. His medium of choice for the illustration is colorful gumballs.

Combining statistics our current levels of immigration with global population and poverty data from the world bank of the “desperately poor” of the world, those who make less than two dollars a day, Beck illustrates the absurdity of the open borders arguments.

He opens his presentation with the statement, “Some people say that mass immigration into the United States can help reduce world poverty. Is that true? Well, no it’s not and let me show you why.”


He then assigns a one gumball value to the one million annual legal immigrants the United States has taken in every year since 1990.

He then adds brings the total of desperately poor populations, as represented by their equivalent relative number of gumballs, into the discussion, first from Africa, then India, followed by China and on around the globe. It soon becomes obvious that there are far more needy people than financial or territorial assets within the United States and those who argue that if we were only a little more caring or placed a higher priority on humanitarian considerations are either dishonest or ignorant.

Beck further demonstrates that “There are [at the time of the 2010 demonstration] 5.6 billion people in the world who live in countries with average incomes below that of Mexico,” with Mexico being representative of the type of immigrant most common to the United States.


He displays the absurdity through a series of subsequent demonstrations of the claims that the United States, even to the point of self destructive immigration overload, can do nothing to affect the humanitarian needs of these people by immigration. A gumball here or five there is nothing compared to the scale of the problem.

The solution, as Beck points out, if we desire to help them is to help them where they live.

NumbersUSA is a premier organization dealing with the threat posed by illegal and reckless legal immigration, advocates of “controlled immigration for the national interest,” as is stated on their website.

Those who have never seen the presentation before may be surprised by how effectively it illustrates the fact that we cannot immigrate the world out of poverty. We can only immigrate ourselves into it.

I’m Rick Wells – a conservative writer who recognizes that our nation, our Constitution and our traditions are under a full scale assault from multiple threats. I’m not PC; I call it like I see it. – Please “Like” me on Facebook, “Follow” me on Twitter or visit &

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