Quick question: What do illegal immigrants, gays, women, men, Muslims, and children all have in common?
Quick answer: They are all human.
Which may seem like the obvious answer, of course. But think deeply into it. They are human. Human. HUMAN.
Sunk in yet?
Let's think about it this way. A new family moves in next door. A nice white, middle class family. Two kids and a golden retriever. They seem nice enough. You do your part to welcome them to the neighborhood right? Perhaps bake a plate of cookies, introduce your kids...hey! maybe schedule a play date.
But let's say it happened this way. The new family is Latino and they don't speak a lot of English. They seem frightened and slightly skiddish. What are you first thoughts about them? Do immediately go over and offer cookies and set up a play date, or do you hang back? Something about them just kind of rubs you the wrong way. You can make up excuses for yourself, but the fact remains that, perhaps, part of the fear you feel is that this family is here illegally.
Now, my next question is, what makes a human being illegal? I found a bumper sticker lately that stated "No Human Being is Illegal." And I rather liked it. Why? Because it is without a doubt one of the most honest things I have ever read.
We humans tend to forget that everyone else on this Earth is just like us. We let things like lines on a map and nationalities and documents get in the way of happiness and freedom, and simply LIFE. There is nothing about a single human being that makes them deserving of a life shoved in a third world nation under a dictatorship that strips away everything it means to be human.
We deport people, we tell them they don't belong, they aren't welcome, they aren't one of us. Well, what would? They, if anything, exemplify the true American spirit. The pull yourself up from your bootstraps idealistic view of the world. They come from nothing to try to make something. And they are punished for that. Does anyone truly believe that George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin would have asked these people to leave? I think most of you can figure out the answer.
Does illegal immigration cause problems? Of course it does. But not because of the people, but because of the system. Hunting and deportation just pushes illegal immigration more under the rug and forces the immigrants to further hide themselves, and a vicious cycle erupts. And this cycle needs to end, and soon. The better our government handles the onslaught of immigrants, the better our country will fair for all. It is simply a matter of action and reform.
Land of opportunity? My ass.