Tuesday, May 08, 2007

What Undocumented Americans Face (in New Bedford)

I get most arguments on illegal immigration, but there's one reason why I could never support the most intolerant of them. Why? Clearly, the majority of the people (including leaders in the movement) support mass deportation for one reason alone - they don't like the people coming into this country. The levels of their hatred is pretty sick. Here's a taste of what Undocumented Americans face in New Bedford on a daily basis.

Kanvas, a citizen of the South Coast, had this to say:

I am not tolerant of illegal immigrants. Nope. Not at all. Not one ounce of guilt either. If they come here and are separated from their families...oh well. That's what can happen and they opt to take those chances. Those who break into a warehouse are taking their chances that they will go to jail and be separated from their families. Drop off the mexican illegals to Acapulco, Cancun and Cozumel. Yep. These ideal locations are very far from the border. This will also put a hurt on their tourism too. Cut all aid to cheesy mexico and watch what happens. That stoopid government might just build their own wall to keep their population in!
Oh, those "stoopid" Mexicans! I mean, it's not as if there were ever brilliant minds to come out of Mexico. Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo and Laura Esquivel must have been wasting their time in all their grand efforts. Surely, we don't want any of that talent, cultural knowledge or hard work coming into this country. And if we cut off funds, they'll even build their own wall for us! What a great idea! (/sarcasm off)

In the same thread, New Bedford's Just John agreed.

Yup! Illegal Aliens are up to something... It can't be good...
Because trying to make a decent living isn't a good enough reason to be living here, clearly these "illegal aliens" are "up to something." Pray, tell, what could that possibly be? Only someone warped in the head, and clearly prejudiced against certain populations, could think there was some mass conspiracy.

RedSoxGirl clearly must not be a big believer in basic tolerance or backing up her opinions. She just calls all undocumented immigrants "pigs." Nice.

I was going to stop there, before I made any unnecessary Nazi or KKK comparisons, but then I read CinCity's idea - which is to just kill them all; after all, that's "the only way to get them the hell out of our city." I don't know about that, but perhaps Cincity's statements is exactly where a holocaust starts? A few angry Rwandans or Germans making crazy comments in some private location, till it all boils over.

People would do well to remember that who you're fighting with may just be a clear-cut reminder to reexamine your position on the matter and why you came to that position. Did you reach that conclusion based on facts, or was there some other reason? No one is immune to bigotry; it can affect anyone. The trick is to be smart enough to sense if something you say or think is prejudiced, then work to correct it. That's what being open-minded and accepting is all about - people aren't just born that way, it takes time to get there.

Clearly, there is plenty of room for immigration reform, but no one should side with people like RedSoxGirl, Just John or Kanvas. It's amazing what some people will say in the anonymity of an alias and internet forum. They're the kinds of people who led to the debacle at the New Bedford factory: people who have pushed politicians to create agencies that create human-rights nightmares in their quests to round up immigrants. A far more sensible solution to immigration is trying to create a policy that works; a bipartisan solution was created in the McCain-Kennedy bill, but a few angry Republicans thwarted a policy that even President Bush would have signed.

For the people in New Bedford, I hope they realize the righteous hatred being directed toward immigrant populations in the name of wanting to send "illegal immigrants" home. To put it simply, there was no such hatred directed at European Au-Pairs when they were coming here in boat loads. New Bedford is one of the largest immigrant communities in all of Massachusetts, legal or otherwise. It makes the city more vibrant, interesting - and all around better. These voices of hatred should neither be ignored nor forgotten. They must be confronted; people should know that the New Bedford community overwhelmingly supports its immigrant population and they will never, ever be forgotten or go unappreciated.


joe said...

There was TONSSSS of hate for European immigrants, Ryan. Tons! We just were'nt around to witness it.

You know what happend? They all learned the language, assimilated, and became proud members of the American dream. 3-4 Generations later, I'm born, half-German, 1/4 Irish and 1/4 French.

That's why I think mass deportation is stupid, but I also think the immigrants need to continue working to assimilate into society (which doesn't mean ditch your roots either). These huge rallies with the mexican flags and "la raza" and all that...it just makes people like me who would be more sympathetic to their plight just want to see them get kicked out for not waving an American flag instead.

tblade said...

Why do people think that Immigrants aren't learning the language? Big myth.

The immigrant issue drives me absolutely batty for many of the reasons stated above. Like Ryan, I'm not saying ignore the issue, but there are some people that have so much irrational hate and fear of immigrants that I'm scared for our society. I try not to discuss immigration because it makes me so f'ing upset.

But let the shining examples above be a lesson to Republicans. Because of Rosie, Loose Change, etc, Republicans are going out of their way to brand the Democrats as the "conspiricy nut" party. Let it be known that glass-housed Republicans need to stop throwing stones. I have a feeling that CinCity is not "Coo-Coo for Kucinich" but is voting Republican. I look at an ABC news report that the KKK (whose former leader David Duke ran for the Repub nomination) and White Supremicist groups are turning their hate from US citizens to immigrants. Again, I'm guessing these guys aren't donating to Obama. And what about the Republican Party officials in Utah that wanted to pass a resolution saying immigrants were sent by Satan to destroy the US and establish the New Wold Order? Hello? Rosie is a dopey talk show host, these are active party members!!!

I'm not in favor of an open border policy, but aside from Abu Garhib, Gitmo, Mai Lai, slavery, etc, etc, I feel that the American ideal includes fairness, compassion, and humanism. The manufactured, violent uber-hate present in the immigration debate will not help us solve anything.

Anonymous said...

There was hatred against so-called non-white immigrants (Irish and Italians) on the part of English speaking natives, yes. Based on bigotry and "oh those dirty stinking foreigners, they won't assimilate, they speak some chicken scratch, they have weird customs, they won't learn the language, why is it so hard to find an extra 20 hours a day to study English after working 20 hours a day, they're heathen Papists, they can do our shit work but then they've got to go." Same damn thing as today. They didn't win anyone over by assimilating, although yes, second and third generation immigrants find it easier to learn the language and to pass go figure, they were eventually made honorary whites and accepted into the definition of American by having high enough birth rates that they couldn't be ignored politically and by saying, don't hate us, hate the blacks, hate the Latinos, let's all hate them together. Marvelous.

And aren't you uberCatholic guy? Especially considering the history of anti-immigrant bigotry coinciding with anti-Catholicism (and today, anti-Islam). I can't say that I've ever waved an American flag in my life, I wasn't aware that was some definition of American culture I needed to assimilate to. And I doubt I'd feel much like doing it if I worked all day at some dirty dangerous job for subminimum wage only to be harassed and threatened by every moron I came across because I had an accent.

Anonymous said...

They're here doing our dirty jobs because we have built up a standard of living in which those dirty jobs are still better than the jobs they can get at home.
Three of the six people plotting to attack the Army base in NJ were illegal aliens.
Shouldn't the illegal aliens be punished in comparison to the legal immigrants who stood in line at our embassies and did things the right way.

joe said...

12:11 anon, your ignorance of an American culture to assimilate to is a lie for the sake of attacking me. Don't be trite. Also, it's not people with accents, its the fact that I watch the history channel and there are ads entirely in Spanish. pft.

Ryan Adams said...

Hey Joe, European immigrants? Yes. But I wasn't talking about the Irish and the Italians moving here about a hundred years ago. I was talking about (mainly) british and irish young women, mainly serving as au pairs, coming here and then
staying here. It wasn't all that long ago - I can certainly remember them. They were oh-so-hated and scorned that they were granted immunity without too much fuss.

However, it looks like we're mainly in agreement - mass deportation is a horrible, horrible idea. I think the McCain-Kennedy bill was very reasonable and should be the model of what we'd eventually pass.

Anonymous said...

If the current illegal aliens can document they've been here for 5 years, without incident (being arrested) let them stay. Then they should pay a penalty tax proportionate to the time they have spent here enjoying our country. It doesn't help foster a good impression of citizenship if they begin to think they can pick the laws they want to obey. If we make it illegal for them to be here and then don't enforce it ourselves then shame on us, change the law and let anyone come in.

About Ryan's Take