Can't we all just get along?

Ok, the Wolske boys are scrapping in the blogosphere. Here is my slightly less reactionary, slightly less bleeding-heart take on this subject:

Undocument workers, as we are encouraged to call them, are, for the most part, hard working people who want nothing more than to better themselves. As a US citizen, blessed enough to be born here, I cannot fault that. In fact, I applaud it. However, I cannot stomach this newspeak. Let's call a spade a spade. They are here illegally, however noble their reasons. Ok, that's done. I will hereafter refer to such persons as illegal immigrants.

I don't know if this is somehow undermining my husband's authority as head of our family, but I must take personal and public exception to his characterization of people crossing a "filthy desert" as different from other immigrants' arrivals. My great great grandfather was caught paoching hare on the king's propoerty in Wales and was subsequently sent to Canada. Not really all that different, when it comes down to it. Desperate people trying to feed their families.

Conversely, I can understand his frustration. I think much of my irritation stems from this idea that we perpetuae in out fair country-- that we don't have a culture. I remember it even being taught in school that "American Culture" was simply an amalgamation of other cultures. That may be so, but out of that we HAVE developed our own culture. To pretend otherwise is unfair, not only to ourselves, but to anyone who comes here expecting to not assimilate.

Here it is: WE HAVE OUR OWN CULTURE, PEOPLE!! In our culture, it is not acceptable to let your children run around the grocery store shouting and laughing. It is not acceptable in our culture to stop in the middle of the road and talk to your neighbor, holding up traffic. In our culture, we are pretty hung up things like personal space-- we like lots of it!! We also would rahter not be looked at for more than a few beats at a time in passing. In our culture, it is not commonplace to have 10 or more people living in one apartment. It is also not typical to have three generations in one household. Good, bad, or indifferent, these are traits of our "culture." If you come here, you should expect to somewhat adapt to our culture. That doesn't mean shed your heritage, it means enrich both your lives and ours by sharing, adapting, and sometimes sucking it up.

We have no official language in the US. Do I think it is a good thing? Not really, but I am realistic enough to recognize that the time for adopting one has long since passed. However, our culture (there it is again) is one of english language. Do you know that since the DMV has started ofering documents in Spanish they have been hit with a barrage of complaints that the documents are the wrong dialect? When will it end? In the interest of simplicity, let's put everything in Latin. It is easy to learn, and will improve your english, to boot!

I am all for social justice, for sure. We should work to change a system that is very obviously broken. However, we cannot ignore the consequences of illegal immigration. The idea that illegal immigrant take jobs that "Americans" don't want is only a half-truth. Illegal workers take jobs that US citizens don't want at that low wage. What it does is interfere with our economy, not on a local level, but on a much, larger, national scale (admittedly at a smaller rate than some would have us believe, but the impact is there nonetheless). And while we are talking of social justice, lets examine the people in our country most directly affected by this: low-wage earners. These are the men and women who would take these jobs, if it were not for the fact that there is someone else who will take it at a cut-rate. Is social justice only available for aliens?

Whether we think it fair or not, it remains that over eighty hospitals (that was an old number) in the state of California alone have had to close. They were bankrupted by indigent care. It is illegal, and I would argue immoral, for an emergency room to deny treatment. There have been enough people take advantage of this so as to create some major problems. Does anyone advocate this? I don't think so, but the fact remains.

(BTW Pregnancy is NOT covered on most individual healthplans. Only group coverage, usually)

Um, where was I? Oh yeah. Education. Nevermind, that is an entirely different post.

Ok, lets get down to the motion detectors... No sure how that would set on YOUR conscience, but I don't think I could sleep at night.

I also want to touch on something not yet mentioned. Not all of these people are coming here to provide a future for their children. Human smugglers and drug traffickers abound. Governors in New Mexico and Arizona have declared states of emergency in border counties to free up money. Law enforcement officers have been assaulted, private property has been vandalized and burgularized. Ranchers in border states are also paying directly. Mexican nationals who are apprehended have more rights than their US victims. Where is the social justice in that?

I am still looking for the article about the rancher who was attacked, but this shoudl do for now.


wolske said…
I don't have the time, and am starting to lack the energy, to respond to most of these posts.

but please tell me you did NOT call me a bleeding-heart. please tell me that was in reference to someone else. I'm Mr. "nobody owes you/me anything", Mr. "free markets", Mr. "no handouts"... these are hardly "bleeding-heart" ideals.
Actually, that was more of a nod to my dad, who thinks that I, of all people, am a bleediing-heart.
(He is, I think, slightly right of Atilla the Hun.)

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