It is the first of May, the day that was celebrated as the International Workers' Day in the Soviet Union. And this is the day that illegal immigrants and other protesters of the current immigration policy chose to demonstrate America's dependence on immigrant labor. This to me reeks of socialism which I do not like because it was at the core of the Soviet experiment (what else can you call the now, thankfully, former Soviet Union?) as well as Adolf and the Nazis.
So what is an immigrant to make of all this since something has to be made of it. I came to this country legally and have been trying to carve out a niche for myself ever since. It was hard and I spoke English when I landed at JFK that rainy afternoon almost 17 years ago. People come here because here you can be free, truly free. I grew up knowing that if I spoke up against the government I would be punished for it. But here I can stand on top of the Empire State Building screaming: "Bush is an idiot!" into a megaphone and the not-so-secret police will not drag me away to Guantanamo Bay. It is a pretty heady feeling knowing that I am free to disagree. This is why I am a strong supporter of the First Amendment. I will defend your right to express yourself even if what you say pisses me off. There is room in this country for all of us.
What people who want to change the immigration policy seem to forget is that America was founded on immigrants. Even the so-called Native Americans are desended from people who came across the Bering Straight Bridge during the last Ice Age. This continent most likely did not even have a native population. As for the immigration policy itself, go to Ellis Island and look at the history of immigration. There used to be quotas of how many people from each country were allowed in. And if you were starving, or in fear for your life, but exceeded your country's quota, you were up shit's creek in a leaky boat without a peddle. So I am very greatful that I came to America when I did. And those who think that the current policy is too liberal should be grateful that not only their ancestors made it across the ocean but were allowed in when they arrived.
3 weeks ago