I keep thinking about the policies being enacted in this country and I want to respond but the words evade me. I’m angry, embarrassed and ashamed. Do I really want to open myself up for criticism and ridicule? I embrace constructive debate but refuse to converse with people simply looking to disagree.
I’m angry that people think that refugees fleeing from a civil war and terrorism don’t deserve the relief of a stable environment or at least that’s how I’m perceiving it based on the commentary currently being voiced. Because of a few extremist, an entire population of people are being persecuted. This seems to be something that repeats often in history and yet we never seem to learn. I guess its ok though, as long as they aren’t Christian, right?
I’m embarrassed because this nation was built by immigrants and refugees and this is not how we should be treating people who are in a position that our ancestors were in only a short time ago. They also faced the same bigotry and hate. Yet once again we have not learned from the past because we are once again following the same path.
I’m ashamed. I’m so very ashamed of the people in this country. When I hear the stories on the news or hear people in my own community express such venomous hate I am overcome with emotion that brings tears to my eyes. I get that they say these things out of fear or from lack of knowledge but that doesn’t make it any less sad.
The narrow view that people use to view others that are different makes no sense to me. Those that say they’re family came here legally have no idea that immigration laws did not exist as they do now when they’re ancestors came by boat from across vast oceans. Or maybe they do know but choose not to care. They have made up their minds and refused to see or hear anything else.
When our ancestors were fleeing from an oppressive situation or just leaving to find their dream in a new country they weren’t required to apply for Visa’s or citizenship. They simply got onto a boat and if they survived they reached the shore and began a new life. Sometimes, depending on the year or decade, they were required to fulfill an obligation to this country through military service. Not a bad deal in exchange for the possibility of new start. Or they simply went to work and scrapped by until they could afford more…sound familiar?
I’m also confused. It’s either the immigrants came here and took our jobs or we’re shipping them overseas or across the border. Which is it? Are they taking the jobs that you have applied for and been turned down? What makes them more qualified? Or better yet are you one of the Americans that the righteous claim to be welfare queens? Are you too good for the job yet angry when someone else isn’t?
See all the anger? There is so much hate and misconception that it all blends together. Are you reading this and thinking that the two aren’t the same and they’re different issues? They are and they aren’t. When you ask all these hateful questions from atop your soap box it can be confusing.
Claims are made about those who chose to protest these issues. They are Unamerican, whining or, heaven forbid, liberal (EEKKKK!) Yet those making these claims don’t see that they are the flip side of the same coin. They complain constantly yet rarely offer a productive solution. In their haste to focus on what they perceive to be injustice against them they often miss the bigger picture. We’re all guilty of it, so what are we going to do about it?
I want to challenge everyone. Let us all step back and lean in. Step off the soap box and sit down in the dirt. We all want the same thing. A safe place for our families. A community we can have pride in. A life that matters.