Quick commentary


This one is a bit out of date, but it was in response to a forward sent by my family members.  I know immigration is no longer a top issue, but I feel there are those out there promoting an irrational fear of others, and I thought perhaps a different perspective might make us a bit more aware of why we sometimes look like jerks.

The original email:

Recently, large demonstrations have taken place across the country protesting the fact that congress is finally addressing the issue of illegal immigration. Certain people are angry that the U.S. might actually want to protect its own borders, might make it harder to sneak into this country and, once here, make it harder (as an illegal immigrant) to stay indefinitely.

Let me see if I correctly understand the thinking behind  these protests.

Let’s say I break into your house. Then, when you discover me in your house, you insist that I leave. But I say, I’ve made all the beds and washed the dishes and done the laundry and swept the floors; I’ve done all the things you don’t like to do. I’m hard working and honest (except for when I broke into your house). According to the protesters, not only must you let me stay,you must add me to your family’s insurance plan, educate my kids, and provide other benefits to me and to my family (my husband will do your yard work) because he too is hard-working and honest, except for that breaking-in part. If you try to call the police or force me out, I will call my friends who will picket your house carrying signs that proclaim my illegal right to be there. It’s only fair, after all, because you have a nicer house than I do, and I’m just trying to better myself. I’m hard working and honest, um,except for well, you know. And what a deal it is for me!! I live in your house, contributing only a fraction of the cost of my keep, and there is nothing you can do about it without being accused of selfishness, prejudice and being an anti-housebreaker. Oh yeah, and I want you to learn my language so you can communicate with me! English is too hard for me to learn. You should also allow me to vote in my own language, since I live in your house!

Why can’t people see how ridiculous this is?  Only in The U.S.  If you agree, pass it on
(in English).  Share it if you see the value of it as a good simile.  If not, blow it off, along with your future and your kids future.

The most obnoxious part (well beyond the whole thing) was the “pass this on in English” thing.  English speakers were not the only settlers.  I don’t know if they teach that in school so much.  Now, this was the last email of this type I received from my family.  I feel it may have been because I replied all with the following:

Another way to think of it is:

Say I broke into your house.  Then I stole all of your stuff.  In exchange, I gave you some beads and a few small pox infested blankets. I decided I didn’t like the fact that you were taking up so much space in your house, so I thought you should move into your neighbor’s house. I don’t really care that you and your neighbor don’t get along, you look
alike, i.e. not like me, so that’s where you should be.  Then I decide that I don’t have enough room in your house, and I’d like your neighbor’s house too.  I move you all to the abandoned lot at the end of the street, until I decide to put a pool there.  Then I force you and your entire family, including children and the elderly, to carry all of your stuff I didn’t want out to the middle of an abandoned junk yard where I tell you that you can do whatever you want, so long as you stay behind this fence.  Then I decide to name my kids’ little league team after you and use an offensive caricature of you as our mascot.  If you protest, I’ll tell you you’re just being overly sensitive, now get back behind that fence where I put you.  By the way, I dislike the way you talk, dress, and your religion.  Here are the clothes you must wear, the language you must speak, and the god you must worship.  Well, I guess you can still perform those ceremonies, but only when my friends come to
visit so we can be entertained.

In this country, we’re all illegal immigrants (except for the people forced to live on reservations because our ancestors stole their land). Of course, our ancestors didn’t come here to do all of the work that the natives didn’t want to do.  They came to build a better life to the detriment of the natives and brought other people kidnapped from far away places to do the work they didn’t want to do.  They stole land, committed genocide, and were generally unpleasant to the people who were already here.  We’re doing better in some ways, but not in others.

Perhaps instead of worrying about people looking for good jobs here, we should start thinking about why they don’t have any jobs at home.  If there was work there that paid a decent wage, do you think people would leave their families behind or drag their children on a perilous flight across the desert to get here?  If corporations wouldn’t move to third world countries and set up sweatshops taking advantage of the local populace, we might have to pay an extra buck for that pair of Nike’s and CEOs might not have that yacht and the third house in Bermuda, but we wouldn’t have so many desperate people going to such desperate measures to keep their children from starving to death.  Feel free to pass this on in whatever language you prefer.

So, politics probably isn’t the best kind of post on my “business blog,” but I feel that we need to stand for something.  Why not kindness to others and a general sense of helpfulness towards our neighbors be they like us or different.  Oh, and I’m very much against hating people just because they’re different.  I don’t hate my family for forwarding emails that I find offensive.  I simply voice my opinion and hope they will respect my right to it.

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~ by rebeccaclaire on August 28, 2008.

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