Indiana, PA - Indiana County

Letter to the editor: Immigrant children would be good for U.S.

on August 01, 2014 10:19 AM

In his column Sunday, “Perry makes bold move on border,” Cal Thomas once again displays a selective memory on historical events and a very selective concept of American values.

Since most of the recent wave of immigrants have been children who are surrendering immediately to Border Patrol agents, the need for National Guard troops is questionable at best and a 2016 political stunt at worst.

After criticizing President Obama for not sufficiently securing the border against our enemies, Thomas goes on to rather bluntly state that “an enemy can also be a person, or groups of people who, by their presence in a country, undermine its economy, strength and values.”

And assuming that he’s referring to these children, it takes one’s breath away.

He quotes a Rasmussen poll that indicates 59 percent of U.S. voters want to send the children home. But using stats from that source is like quoting from the GOP playbook.

More than that, our Statue of Liberty invites these people in. Our immigrants have been not only doctors and engineers, but also mill laborers and truck drivers and fruit pickers.

They brought with them the polka and Octoberfest and cherry trees in D.C. We celebrate Cinco de Mayo as well as the Fourth of July.

All of these and more were brought here by floods of immigrants who have determined what our national culture and values are. Many of them had to fight for their place in our society, mainly because people like Cal Thomas didn’t want them here.

For a long time, our fraternities and country clubs were exclusively for WASPs (white, Anglo-Saxon Protestants). People of color and Jews and Catholics and other non-WASPs were not invited, even though our gift from the French, the Statue of Liberty, didn’t discriminate regarding the masses who were yearning to breathe free.

The most important thing that Thomas has forgotten is that these immigrants, like the waves before them, came here for any number of reasons. A safe and secure living environment, economic and educational opportunities, religious freedom and political stability were only a few of the reasons.

And these children from Latin America will not undermine our economy and strength and values. They will add to the fabric of our society, to that great melting pot of various races and religions and cultures. Our values thus increase to keep us exceptional.

Don Skillin

Indiana

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