- js reader version
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
by Anna Kunkin
Friday, Mar. 31, 2006 at 4:44 PM
I have been inundated lately with a flood of articles analyzing the pros and cons of the various immigration bills, the impact of immigration on our social structures, the changing face of the color of our population, etc. I think there is something seriously missing in almost the entire discussion and analysis about immigrants; and that is the fact that the majority of them are misplaced people.
I have been inundated lately with a flood of articles analyzing the pros and cons of the various immigration bills, the impact of immigration on our social structures, the changing face of the color of our population, etc., and aside from an article by ex L.A. Times columnist Robert Scheer, (Legalize the “illegals” truthdig.com, 3-28-06), where he talks about the history of scapegoating immigrants in this country, there is something seriously missing in almost the entire discussion and analysis about immigrants; and that is the fact that the majority of them are misplaced people.
Women, men, and children have left their homes, countries and villages; places where their families have roots in their communities that go back hundreds of years to brave a journey fraught with danger and hardship, with only the clothes on their back; only to arrive in a country where they face a questionable future; where they are confronted daily with racism and the message that they are not wanted. The majority of them have not done this out of a love of adventure. They are here because they have been forced into such miserable poverty due to the neoliberal policies imposed by our government, that they cannot survive in their homelands. They are forced to move or they will die. It's as simple as that.
Everybody should make it a point to see the film "Wetback", which gives a glimpse into what that journey is like for so many; where immigrants from South and Central America knowingly face loss of life and limb trying to board a freight train known as “the train of death” which will move them through Mexico to the north; a journey where women are raped and worse, where children die in the desert.
People don't want to leave their homes, their family, their life, to suffer and do backbreaking work; nobody does. You wouldn't, I don't. So why does so much of this discussion center around the idea of hordes of brown masses converging on us to steal our jobs and use our hard earned resources....as if this is the only motivation?
Where is the discussion about how Neoliberalism has ravaged the economies of most third world countries; how so-called “free” trade deals like NAFTA in Mexico, and huge North American food subsidies have created “dumping” of cheap food which has forced many farmers to lose their land and move to overcrowded cities where the only work available to them is in maquillas at slave wages?
Where is the discussion about the privatization of natural resources in Central and Latin America….and the entire third world for that matter, where supposed “sovereign” governments understand that they either play along and allow companies like Coca-Cola to take over the water supply, for example, or they will be Erased… Killed. Murdered… where, if there is even a hint that the people might rise-up and resist they will be taken care of by military death squads which have been trained right here at the School of the Americas; trained in suppression and torture techniques to make sure that there will be no uprising?
Where is the discussion about the implicit agreement of this by every citizen of this country? And remember, “Ignorance is not an excuse under the law”. Where is the discussion about what our tax money is paying for? Doesn’t all of this make all of us just a little bit responsible?
Another thing that is a glaring issue ...and even more irritating when it is espoused from the so called liberal-left, is the paternalistic and condescending idea that "these people" are less educated than the workers here, and this is, in fact, why they are so well suited for the meaningless toiling jobs that “Americans” don’t want. Well, if people would bother to learn Spanish, which is a real language, and talk to your gardeners, your housekeepers, the maintenance guy at your office, you would discover that many of "these people" are highly educated. You might discover that many can quote the great poets Borges and Neruda, which most of the English speaking people I know have never even heard of. You might learn that there is a deep understanding of world history; that most know from personal experience what the word “Neoliberalism” means, are well trained in critical thinking, have homes full of books and children that read them, and in short, are for the most part, more educated than your average North-American educated middle class SUV driving mall shopper.
You might also be surprised to discover, that while Mexico is rich with culture and language, not all the Spanish speakers you deal with every day are Mexicans. Many come from other countries; countries with exotic names you may not have heard of like Surinam where Dutch is spoken; and some where the food staple is pasta and not tortillas, where everything from the music and language, to the manner of dress is different from Mexico. People come from places, including Mexico, where there is richness in literature, films, music and culture that easily stands next to any European tradition.
Of course I don’t claim to have painted the whole picture here; the subject is infinitely more complex, and many will have something to add. So let’s do it. Let’s talk about this and make it real. Maybe then we would begin to see the new additions to our population, our newer neighbors, as the human beings they are, talk to them as equals, invite them into our homes as they would invite us into their hearts, and begin to learn what they have to teach us.
Report this post as:
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 11 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
|The social cost of unlimited immigration
||Friday, Mar. 31, 2006 at 6:41 PM
|Not just that
||Friday, Mar. 31, 2006 at 6:43 PM
|What I don't want right now
||a white person
||Saturday, Apr. 01, 2006 at 12:52 AM
||Saturday, Apr. 01, 2006 at 3:04 AM
||Saturday, Apr. 01, 2006 at 11:59 AM
||This is Open Publishing
||Monday, Apr. 03, 2006 at 4:20 PM
||Me la pela
||Tuesday, Apr. 04, 2006 at 2:16 AM
|Anna has got it right
||Monday, Apr. 10, 2006 at 8:04 AM
|But they take refuge in the USA - why?
||Monday, Apr. 10, 2006 at 10:10 AM
|IMMIGRANTS ALSO CONTRUBUTE
||Tuesday, Mar. 27, 2007 at 1:07 PM
GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE
lausd whistle blower
Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images
UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light
Change Links April 2018
Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018
Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018!
Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018!
Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A.
Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released
Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups
After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video
Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights
What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It
Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down
Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29
Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf
Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development
Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine
Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents
Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters
City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre
Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling
Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present
Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police
LA Times Homicide Report
More Local News...
What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress??
Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée
The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion
Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service
The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally!
The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder
Paraphysique de la dictature étatique
Book Review: "The New Bonapartists"
The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia
Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine
The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally!
“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize!
The World Dependent on Central Banks
Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine
March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update
Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel
ICE contract with license plate reader company
Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes
Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges
Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes
Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety
Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man
Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes
Paraphysique de l'autorité
Two Podcasts on fbi corruption
Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS
More Breaking News...