Friday, April 30, 2010
What a difficult topic, sure to divide and destroy. The thing about immigration is I am totally divided on this topic. I can see both sides to a very difficult issue and if I am divided even by myself how difficult is it for the entire country?
The fact is historically this influx of immigration is actually quite circular and has occurred several times in our past, with the Chinese in the 1870's and with the Irish in the early 1800's both times we fought to limit immigration claiming too many came over, they stole our jobs and did nothing to add to society. Both times we were wrong what is to say we are right this time?
I know a man, an uncle to a childhood friend who crossed the border on the engine of a car, not hidden in the trunk or under the car no he came over hidden on the engine.. Can you imagine the pain that he must have born? To this day he bears the scars of his choice. I have a friend whose mother crossed the border in labor so she could have her child in this country in order to have a better life. I have been in labor trust me that is not an easy feat. How can we as a nation not embrace such people? People who will do anything to improve their lots in life? People who have made a difference in the lives of so many? I know both of them impacted my life.
And yet, I resent hearing of people who come here and DEMAND their constitutional rights. Demand they be given the same rights as those who live and die here. I know as a single parent I do not qualify for many benefits yet when I go to a food pantry or apply for assistance I see in the parking lot expensive cars of people who do not even speak my language and they qualify for the same things that I a citizen do not. It is very frustrating. I find that I resent hearing of someone who breaks our laws then finds a way to get an entire legislature on their side because they are being persecuted. Hey I am a taxpaying American citizen get on my side for a few minutes.
Then of course there is the case of the children... I know a girl, a lovely, delightful, intelligent girl. She has been in this country since she was about 18 months. She did not choose to come here but she did. She was raised here, educated here and wants to stay in what she truly considers here country and yet she is considered an illegal immigrant.. Shoot, she is about as Mexican (and that is her nationality I am not picking on any one country) as my daughter. She is a typical American teenager... trust me I have watcher her grow up. She wants to go to college and have a career but she is limited in her choices because she is not considered legal. To send her "back" to Mexico would be a joke the only thing she has in common is she speaks the language. Again so does my 18 year old daughter.
I guess my main grief is that our laws are being formulated by those who do not care for this country. I am sick of hearing how the president of Mexico says we should make certain things available to the people of his country. Hello, make it available yourself. Fix your country not ours.. We have a responsibility to our citizens not yours.. I know if we went to Mexico and wanted to live there, we could not own land (we could own the structure but not the land) we would have to have a Mexican National co-own the property with us. We could not get free education or free medical. Hmmmmm, the way I see it is if we provide such things for them then they should offer us the same. That is good neighbor policy. Right now our policy seems more like that of a parent appeasing a spoiled child..
Please note, I know there are many many many individuals that come to this country because they DREAM.. and I want to help them with their dreams but I wish their dreams could be realized without putting a burden on us. I know there will be those who say I am ignorant or prejudiced when actually I am neither.. well I may not be as "wise" and informed as I would like to be but I do have an open mind and I am willing to listen to the plight of the undocumented. My grandfather's family were immigrants and my grandmother's first language was Spanish so I do understand. It is just neither of them ever felt entitled to anything. They worked.. oh man they worked... for everything they had and they followed the rules in doing so. I guess that is the main point.. They followed the rules.. and yet earlier I wrote a blog about a woman named Vivian who broke laws because it was the right thing to do...
See, if I am confused about the issue of immigration as a individual, if I can see both sides with clarity how can the government be any less confused?