Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Immigration, part trois

It never ends, does it? Every time I think it's done, it's not. So here we go again.

So how did yesterday's "Day without Immigrants" affect you? I'll tell you how it affected me--not a whit. My day was not impacted at all. According to my office mates, it would've been had I visited a Chipotle, but I didn't, so therefore no impact in my day.

you know what really gets me mad about this whole argument? The idea that we who oppose illegal immigration are somehow anti-immigrant. Now obviously I cannot speak for all of us, and there are, surely, people who are anti-immigration, no matter how foreign that idea is to me. But we're not anti-immigration. We're anti- illegal immigration. We're against people coming into our country by way of breaking our laws and then wanting to be good citizens. Um, hello? If you want that, then come legally. Come like the immigrants did in the 19th and early 20th century. Don't sneak over the wall. Come the right way, and we'll take you in happily. America is a big tent. But we don't think too kindly of those who come in illegally and then demand all sorts of things. And yes, these are demands . There's no other word for them. Let's be real. They want acceptance, they want health care, they want citizenship, they want schooling for their kids. They're marching with wrong-way American flags and chanting "yes we can." Well, we don't doubt that. But do it legally!

And the whole national anthem thing? That is probably one of the worst PR moves of the century. You want to be an America? Learn the National Anthem in English! Can you imagine an Arab immigrant in Europe, say, learing the Marsellaise (French National Anthem) in Arabic? Not so much. Would not fly. At all. And yet....

Let's call a spade a spade. They are illegal immigrants. The crime is inherent in the name. I am sympathetic to the idea of coming for a better life. But you're not making your life better by sneaking into a country. I'm sorry.

And the bishops who are against the law? I wish they'd actually study it and then talk. If they were only so vocal about, say, abortion! You know, things the Church can actually speak with authority and intelligence on! What an idea! But that's for another post....sigh. I wish Church leaders would speak up consistently, and not only when precious liberal matters are being discussed.

1 comment:

Orthodoxy said...

Hear hear, Emily!

Just wanted to share my own experience with the bishops.

I live in Orlando, and one of my friends directed me to this site which is the response of the Florida Bishops: http://www.flacathconf.org/Publications/BishopsStatements/Bpst2000/ImmigrationReform3-22-06.htm. This website (as well as the official response of the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops - http://www.usccb.org/mrs/index043006.shtml) make reference to a group called "Justice for Immigrants" (note the lack of the word "illegal").

Unfortunately, the Justice for Immigrants website routinely interchanges the terms "immigrant" and "illegal alien" (exactly as you said - people seem to think that those against illegal immigration are against immigrants), especially in the section about dispeling the "myths". (See for yourself!)

It unfortunate that the bishops are so misguided in the political arena that I had to seek out more concise (and practical) answers from other prominent Catholics. Some of the other Catholic perspectives are at Jimmy Akin's blog (http://www.jimmyakin.org/2006/03/immigration_cat.html and http://www.jimmyakin.org/2006/03/aps_newsitorial.html) and Fr. Johnathan Morris, LC (http://www.foxnews.com/fatherjonathan). (I actually wrote to the Legion of Christ to find out their perspective on immigration, because their founder, Fr. Marciel Maciel, is from and based in Mexico City - they should have a better first-hand perspective.)

Of course, I'll also plug my own blog here, while I'm at it. This is a post I wrote back in March about immigration after the first demonsstrations: http://spaces.msn.com/jamiebeu/blog/cns!6E0753BD56367285!341.entry.