It is so easy to be politically correct - makes no waves and makes everybody happy.
It's time to tell the truth. Maybe I'll make waves. Maybe some people will take issue with me. But what is plain to see can be told, and if some people still want to say they see something different than what I see, well that's their right too.
Today, May 1st, rallies in cities across America featured illegal aliens demanding their rights, telling news anchors they 'just want to help their family', they're 'hard workers and shouldn't be illegal' and so on. So therefore, say these people, they should be granted citizenship, legal status, all the rights of an American.
Strangely, not one of them that I heard said "I love America. I want to be an American. I'm turning my back on the country of my birth, and my future is to become a U.S. citizen."
No, not one. What they did say is that they needed money, that they had a right to be here because they were able to cross an unguarded border, and that people that didn't want them here are prejudiced. They want to make money here, take it over the border, and have citizenship in both America and (fill in the blank Latino country).
Where is the passion for this country that my grandparents had when they left everyone they knew and came here from Finland? Where is the commitment to America that my grandparents had when they applied for American citizenship and swore loyalty to this country and no other?
I only see a passion for material wealth, and privilege. Fine, my ancestors came to better themselves too. Only they didn't think anyone else should just hand them privileges without getting anything in return. They gave all they had -- their loyalty, their lives invested here and here alone.
The truth is, there are over six and a half billion people on this planet, and about half of them want to live in America, make money in America, have rights like Americans. Many of those people have invested years in legal applications for visas to immigrate to America.
What gives the Latinos who made up the majority of today's marchers the right to push ahead of all those other people to the head of the line? What is special about them, that they should get citizenship or work visas before people who have legally applied?
The truth is - nothing. Nothing at all. The have no special rights and no special abilities. They have only one thing those other people don't -- proximity to a loosely guarded border that they have crossed illegally.
Do I sound cold? Proud? Uncaring? WELL then - you try "caring" for the half of the world's population that suffers from lack of freedom, or food, or job opportunities. You might quickly become overwhelmed. You might decide, as have I, that you can send money to starving orphans, and people suffering from earthquakes or tsunamis, but inviting a few billion of them to come live in your country doesn't make much sense - not for you and not for them. Because your country will quickly take on the woes of the places they left. Your country will soon run out of resources to help its own people - or anyone else.
Isn't the better solution to encourage those other countries to find their own path to a fair economy and equality for all their citizens? There are things we can do to help - buy FAIR TRADE products, elect men and women to Congress who will stand up for fair foreign policy, Give regularly to Mercy Corps or some other highly rated medical group that will help reduce illness in impoverished countries, thereby giving the person (and by extension, their whole country) a better opportunity to work on their own future.
Sure there are other aspects to the immigration issue: languague, assimilation, culture clash, crime, and yes - job issues from both the employer's and employee's views, -- many other issues.
And not one of those other issues can take precedence over fairness (after all, 'fairness' is what all the rallies were about today, right?)
Fair is to expect people who want the rights and priveleges of citizens to invest their lives, their WHOLE lives, in THIS country, along with all the rest of us. Fair is to expect that people take turns with everyone else who wants to come here, and not start out their demand for fairness with "but only for us, not those others".
Fairness is equal justice and equal immigration opportunity for all, not just those who are close enough to illegally cross a border.