Letters to the editor
Show respect to Hispanic
Back in the early days of the first George W. Bush presidency, when it appeared that Bush might be a great president one day, an idea was floated to grant a blanket amnesty to illegal immigrants in this country. The President appeared to be for it, having courted (either sincerely or for political gain), the huge Hispanic population when he was Governor of Texas, and also in the 2000 presidential election. Then came 9-11, and this idea faded away.
Immigrants, Mexico, and the whole issue are back in the news. The President is hoping to reach some sort of compromise between American business leaders and hard core right winger supporters on what do about the millions of illegal immigrants in the United States. The courageous thing for this man to do to restore his tarnished image, and make up for his fumbling blunders of nation-building in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere, would be to go back to 2001 and grant the blanket amnesty.
The nation is obsessed with the Mexican border. It is as if the Mexican War was still going on, and the Alamo has not yet been won. The Mexican border is the most paid-attention-to border in the world. No one worries about the Canadian border. You don't hear anything about those darn Canadians who cross the border daily to do business in the United States. Is it because they return home? Is it because most of them are light skinned and blue eyed? Maybe it's a combination of the latter.
Hey, let's get something straight. Me, writing this, and you, reading this, did not originate in this country Our families may have been here 200 or more years, but we all came from somewhere else. Unless you can prove total Native American ancestry and be 100 percent sure, your people were once immigrants to this land of E Pluribus Unum, just like the Mexicans of today who come here for whatever reason. Your people were discriminated against too by narrow minded people of the day. The Irish, the Germans, the Italians, the Poles, the Czechs, all suffered various types of discrimination. Yet, they were finally welcomed.
The time has come to welcome the Hispanics to this country. We must do so as a nation and give them one hearty Bienvenidos! I would much rather have people from other lands over here enriching us and our culture, than having people from our land over there engaged in nation building and forcing American ideas and mores down their throats in the name of national security, but in the disguise of empire-building. Let's build an empire at home. We can start by showing some respect to the Spanish speaking people who want to be part of the United States of America.
-- David Shipp