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Feb 24, 2009 - 25 comments
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Ellis Island



This was sent to me in an email...

Orange County California Newspaper



This is a very good letter to the editor. This woman made some good points. For some reason, people have difficulty structuring their arguments when arguing against supporting the currently proposed immigration revisions. This lady made the argument pretty simple. NOT printed in the Orange County Paper.........

Newspapers simply won't publish letters to the editor which they either deem politically incorrect (read below) or which does not agree with the philosophy they're pushing on the public. This woman wrote a great letter to the editor that should have been published; but, with your help it will get published via cyberspace!

From: 'David LaBonte'
My wife, Rosemary, wrote a wonderful letter to the editor of the OC Register which, of course, was not printed. So, I decided to 'print' it myself by sending it out on the Internet. Pass it along if you feel so inclined. Written in response to a series of letters to the editor in the Orange County Register:

Dear Editor:
So many letter writers have based their arguments on how this land is made up of immigrants. Ernie Lujan for one, suggests we should tear down the Statue of Liberty because the people now in question aren't being treated the same as those who passed through Ellis Island and other ports of entry.

Maybe we should turn to our history books and point out to people like Mr. Lujan why today's American is not willing to accept this new kind of immigrant any longer. Back in 1900 when there was a rush from all areas of Europe to come to the United States, people had to get off a ship and stand in a long line in New York and be documented . Some would even get down on their hands and knees and kiss the ground. They made a pledge to uphold the laws and support their new country in good and bad times. They made learning English a primary rule in their new American households and some even changed their names to blend in with their new home.

They had waved good bye to their birth place to give their children a new life and did everything in their power to help their children assimilate into one culture. Nothing was handed to them. No free lunches, no welfare, no labor laws to protect them. All they had were the skills and craftsmanship they had brought with them to trade for a future of prosperity.

Most of their children came of age when World War II broke out. My father fought alongside men whose parents had come straight over from Germany , Italy , France , and Japan . None of these 1st generation Americans ever gave any thought about what country their parents had come from. They were Americans fighting Hitler, Mussolini and the Emperor of Japan . They were defending the United States of America as one people.

When we liberated France , no one in those villages were looking for the French-American or the German- American or the Irish-American. The people of France saw only Americans. And we carried one flag that represented one country. Not one of those immigrant sons would have thought about picking up another country's flag and waving it to represent who they were. It would have been a disgrace to their parents who had sacrificed so much to be here. These immigrants truly knew what it meant to be an American. They stirred the melting pot into one red, white and blue bowl.

And here we are in 2008 with a new kind of immigrant who wants the same rights and privileges, only they want to achieve it by playing with a different set of rules, one that includes the entitlement card and a guarantee of being faithful to their mother country. I'm sorry, that's not what being an American is all about. I believe that the immigrants who landed on Ellis Island in the early 1900's deserve better than that for all the toil, hard work and sacrifice in raising future generations to create a land that has become a beacon for those legally searching for a better life I think they would be appalled that they are being used as an example by those waving foreign country flags.

And for that suggestion about taking down the Statue of Liberty , it happens to mean a lot to the citizens who are voting on the immigration bill. I wouldn't start talking about dismantling the United States just yet.

(signed) Rosemary LaBonte


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by Louie20, Feb 24, 2009
Amen.  My grandparents came from Denmark and Germany.  They settled in Minnesota without much money to survive. They worked extremely hard and raised families.  I remember my mother telling me that for Christmas one year each of the seven children got an orange.  That's all they received and it tasted so sweet.
The government did not gave the one penny.  There was no health care.  The winters were very cold and they kept warm around a cast iron range filled with wood for heat and cooking.
They all learned to speak English as fast as the could because they were in America.  Today the immigrants do not seem to want to learn English.  They can stay in their own-kind communities and never learn English.  Most of them as living in government housing, using government food stamp card and getting government health care.  They never had it so good.
The U.S taxpayers are getting tired of paying high taxes to raise someone elses family.  I think of benefits from the government are too good.

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by margypops, Feb 24, 2009
Tear down the statue of liberty I fel ourtraged at the idea...I agree with the sentiments of both of these posts.

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by jollyman069, Feb 24, 2009
This is a very complex and difficult issue... but i agree when you come here from another country and you want to be a citizen of our great country.. for one you should pledge your heart to the USA, you should learn our language..English.. i am not saying you can't speak your native language but you should take the time to learn our language..please leave the staue of liberty alone she needs to be in the New York harbor

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by ILADVOCATE, Feb 24, 2009
As a New Yorker, I know people of all cultural backgrounds and many who have preserved their own culture and speak their native language within their own family but speak English fluently everywhere else. And their whole family did immigrate here for the chance at a better life and achieved it and all of them work hard. There are still immigrants like that. And although the Statue of Liberty does show that America welcomed immigrants in reality, the immigrants then, despite their willingness to work hard and their ability to integrate faced a good deal of discrimination, including my great grandparents who emigrated from Russia at the turn of the century. I know because a memoir was written. Each new generation faced its own set of challenges and discrimination and each contributed to America, including culturally. Many of our common traditions, including phrases in the English language and food come from immigrants but we don't think about it. Its an equal learning process as long as they learn English, obey the law, respect American traditions and are willing to work. I've met many fine decent people like this and they all achieved and contributed to our country and came here for that reason.  

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by gokuangel, Feb 25, 2009
I totally get you guys point but im tired of the immigrants who are doing this and making my family look bad!! My husband was born in Mexico and we have done ALL the right things to make him legal and make it where we can stay here and not forced to go to Mexico!! I was born here and do NOT want to go there!! My husband has been here since he was 10 and he works very hard and we receive NO help what so ever!! My in laws own their house and mine too as I said NO1 in his family gets govt. housing or welfare!! It's very annoying these people who are doing this and the ones who think every1 is doing it!! We are NOT and some people do not understand how hard it is to become legal here it cost thousands of $$ and LOTS of time!! Me and my DH had to put our entire lives on hold due to INS laws!!! I'm not posting to start a riot you guys have a very good point and I totally understand it!! I just want people to understand my side as well cus its very hard!!!

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by Brittny27, Feb 25, 2009
Growing up in the city I live in I have seen over the years a great change in the minority. When I was younger Hispanics  were the minority in school and English was spoken. Now Caucasians are the minority and Spanish is taught in kindergarten. Our school system has even made Spanish only classes.  

I strongly agree that if you want to live in the United States of America you need to learn our language. I had a job that 95% of our customers were hispanic and I repeatedly got asked why I do NOT speak Spanish. If I was going to go to a country that did not speak my language you bet I would be learning that language.  Having a 5 year old translate what you are saying to there parents gets old real fast and they never understand what your saying.  

I can't even get a job in this town because I can't speak Spanish.  This irritates the hell out of me.  

I think as long as you come to this country legally and uphold our laws then your welcome here. However this is not always the case.  

I do think that we need stronger immigration laws. Even then I still think we will always have the illegal immigrants.

I have to say they better leave the Statue of Liberty exactly where she stands she represents so much to this country and to even think someone has spoke about removing her just irks me.

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by jollyman069, Feb 25, 2009
Brittny i agree with you ...you shouldn;t be forced to learn a foregin language to be able to get a job in the USA..i   can seee them teaching spanish in school but it should be a elective class

gokuangel... i think it's great your husband wants to become a legal citizen..i didnt know it cost thousands of dollars to become a citizen.. you also make a very good point that there are ones who are doing things illegally and getting gov't assitance and they want to sterotype your husband just because he is of Mexican decent thats not right..good luck to you and your husband hope everything works out for you all



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by flmagi, Feb 25, 2009
I have no problem with immigrants coming to this country and following the legal channels to citizenship.  But those that come here illegally, I have a problem with. The key word here, being "Illegal". There are laws that we all must follow. No one should be allowed to do things illegally. If an American does something illegal, we face charges, jail time etc.These illegals put a strain on welfare, hospitals and jobs. Yet they are demanding all these privileges, along with schools speaking Spanish, every printed thing in the US now has to have Spanish on it, and press 1 for English????????
Illegals should be dealt with as if they were doing something ILLEGAL!  And  Americans speak English !!!!!!

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by lonewolf07, Feb 25, 2009
I am a Native American/Canadian.  To me any non-Native is an immigrant.  Many of the early immigrants or more accurately, colonizers, killed off our tribes so they could have our land and resources.  If I follow the predominant logic of this thread, you should all be deported for entering our land illegally.  Was killing us off and forcing us onto reservations legal?  ethical?

Native people aren't perfect but those on the east coast welcomed the Europeans and taught them how to survive during cold winters.  In return many were slaughtered and entire tribes were lost forever.  Oh, I forgot.  This thread is about immigrants not the original people.  So send the Seventh Cavalry (Custer) to deport me back to the reservation  = )






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by VicUser, Feb 25, 2009
I am an American, plain and simple. Oh, my Great Grandparents on my Mother’s side came from Germany.  My Dad’s side can’t really be traced back to entering the county but our surname is defiantly European. I don’t have a German flag displayed to show my heritage. My Mother once said that when she asked her Grandpa something about Germany and being German, he looked at her and said “We are Americans now”.  They learned and spoke English and when the children went to school, they learned to read and write in English too.

I am so tired of hyphenations African-Americans, Mexican-Americans, ect.  Maybe if you have dual citizen ship it would be ok, but there again can you really swear allegiance to two countries? I even take offence to the term Native American being reserved for one select group of people, after all didn’t they migrate from somewhere at sometime? I am as much native to this land as anyone who’s ancestors came here way before mine.


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by lonewolf07, Feb 25, 2009
No.  We should always remember things that happened in the past (like the Holocaust).  He/she who forgets the past is doomed to repeat it in the future.

Just my off topic opinion of course  = )




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by jollyman069, Feb 25, 2009
Vicuser...you make very good point,,if you want to be a citizen of the United States then give your heart to her..you can't follow two different leaders..

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by margypops, Feb 25, 2009
Vic user I agree with you regarding the use of the Eglish language,  when our leader,(have to sayit was  before he was our leader) tells us we have to start to learn Spanish yet doesnt ask that the immigrants to learn  English waht can I say,they are coming in  in vast numbers now they think there is going to be an Amnesty . We communte to work, and we have to cross 2 border patrol stations, they have dramaticalloy increased their surveillance with the Drug wars in Mexico and the drug lords escaping across the border into the US. We are actually overrun with Mexican illegals and truly California is simply going  under with debt . This is no ref;ection of the letter Rosemary sent and the wonderful true meaning of immigration.I feel this president has to toughten up our immigration laws and not have Amnestys,

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by Sunnyd210, Feb 25, 2009
Amen!!!!! Mary and Vic enough is enough already!!

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by jollyman069, Feb 25, 2009
It scares me that the new adminstartion is going to try to give the illegals amnesty and then they will get gov't aide until they find work.. it is so wrong that there are good people that come to theis country and do things the right and legal way.and then they want to let the ones do it the illegal way are going to get a free ride and that is just so wrong.. and like someone wrote earlier California is going broke with so many illegals getting help

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by Angelinthemorning, Feb 25, 2009
Brittny, you are completely right.  I can't imagine the discrimination you and your husband's family face b/c people assume they are "illegal".  I think it's great that there are those out there like your husband and his family and it's a shame they get lumped in to the same group as illegals.

Vic-  Amen!!  If you want to be a part of this country embrace it wholeheartdley.  You can't follow two countries.

ILADVOCATE- You are right when you say that alot of immigrants back then faced discrimination as well.  But they persevered through hard work.  It's great that we can live in a country with so many different cultural influences.  But, we shouldn't be made to change our language to accomodate people moving in to our country.  





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by Angelinthemorning, Feb 25, 2009
Jollyman-We're so worried about the economy...I don't know how they think it's going to help to give govt aide to the "illegals" who are taking jobs from American people.  

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by ray451, Feb 25, 2009
I am not a US citizen but from the UK. It probably seems strange that I'm posting but immigration is a recurrent issue in the British Isles. Immigration policy is constantly debated here, most recently about people coming from Eastern Europe to 'steal our jobs and use our free health care'. What a load of rubbish. They are coming to try to make a better life for themselves or for their families back in their home countries. Many will later return to Poland or whereever, having done a lot of the work noone else wants to do. Some will stay and make my country their home. I welcome them (though many of my compatriots do not). I am disappointed to see the reaction that lonewolf07 got for her post. Immigration is something that happens for all kinds of reasons, including religious persecution, destitution or a future without prospect of improvement.

It seems to me that there are some clear parallels with the situation of early European migrants and those that are described above as 'illegals'. I've heard of something called the American Dream. I think it means opportunity for all regardless of parentage, social class or wealth. I don't recall any idea that it depends on speaking a particular language. Maybe I'm wrong about that. Also, I visited Minneapolis and was pleased to see some Scandinavian folk dancers performing in a mall, reflecting the origins of many Minnesotans. What about the St Patrick's Day parades in New York? I don't see the contradiction (from this side of the Atlantic) between the latest wave of would-be settlers in North America and the 'original' settlers, or Italian or Irish settlers in the late 19th and early 20th century. They were escaping an impossible situation in their home countries for a better life and have become positive contributors to the society they joined, without totally abandoning their past. And yes there is a cost on those who happen to be already living there. You'd better hope that cost isn't as great as that paid by the ancestors of lonewolf07 a mere handful of generations ago. Focus on the benefits that come from a new injection of labour, energy, talent and ideas for how society should function. By making citizenship an option for all those 'illegals', you'll be making it possible for them to pay tax dollars and participate in the democratic governance of your land. Of the people by the people for the people. It's just that the people are changing. At least, that's what I heard.

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by Angelinthemorning, Feb 25, 2009
Ray- It's nice to get the perspective of someone not from USA, thanks!  I have to say just making citizenship optional for those here sure, some will take it and will start paying taxes.  But then again some won't chose it.  B/C quite frankly why sign up to become legal if that means you have to start paying taxes when you're getting a free ride???

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by VicUser, Feb 25, 2009
Ray, I don't think that too many people here have a problem with people coming from other countries and sharing in the American Dream. Hard work by people that in many cases could not make it in their homeland made this country great. The problem is that we are being invaded from the south and we are being forced to pay medical benefits to those that do not pay taxes because they are not on the tax rolls. Once they have children here they in many cases start drawing from the responses that the law abiding tax payer funds. We are quickly becoming a bilingual country against our will and it is way too common to see a Mexican flag on a “migrant” worker’s car than a US flag. These “migrant workers don’t “migrate” though, once here they stay. I don’t blame them for wanting to stay, I am sure it is much better here than were they came from, but they need to do it legally. Many of them are very hard workers, but are now starting to take over the jobs that US citizens do. One example is construction, because we want what we want and want it now the builds are using the illegals for home construction because they are cheap to hire. The down side is their work is much of the time substandard to what a US worker will do.

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by VicUser, Feb 25, 2009
Angel and others, I am a supporter of "the fair tax" this would solve the problem of anyone living here and not contributing to the federal gov't. It is fair for all Americans because they would be refunded the tax they would pay for basic needs. This tax plan is only a win win win plan and I can not explain it here but it is simple and easy. It will bring more business and jobs back to our country than you can imagine. Those that make more money and buy more expensive item will pay more tax. Please get the printed book or audio book and check it out.

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by Sunnyd210, Feb 25, 2009
I live on LI and let me tell you how bad it is here. They drive around in their illegal cars. You know the cars are illegal because they all have plates from states that the peice of **** wouldnt even make it that far. All the women are pregnant with at least another at her side. U cant even order fast food around here they hardly speak enough english to take ur order. Ohhh I could go on and on but I will shush now. And once again Vic you are on the money.

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by HelpinUtah, Feb 25, 2009
Lonewolf:
My great great grandfather was Canadian and he married a Native American and back then it was a big no no and he was kicked out of his town and had to move to the U.S. and start over.  It's horrible that those types of things happened.  It saddens me that Native Americans were persecuted and pushed aside, but remember it's happened to almost every culture in some way or another.  I'm not saying it was right, but that we have all been persecuted somewhat for our beliefs (religious or culture) in some way or another.  I choose to respect everyone - every culture, but I want to be respected for being an American as well.

Everyone:
I am all for immigration if people do it properly and choose to learn the English language and become citizens or at least if they are here to work (with proper permission) that they pay taxes like the rest of us.  My family comes from Hungary, Britain, Ireland, Switzerland, Canada and Germany (I'm quite a mix), but I'm not any one of those - I'm American!  But, I do have some of my ancestors cultural practices and I believe that's okay as long as we remember that we are now Americans first!

I agree with Vic!

Hugs,
Janet

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by Angelinthemorning, Feb 25, 2009
Vic, I'll make a point to track down that book. I'm all for anything that brings jobs back into America.    

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by jollyman069, Feb 25, 2009
Different cultures is what made America what it is today..i think it;s great but like others have aid they want to come and live here thats great do it legally learn our language, there is not a thing wrong with honering the culture you come from, but if you want to live here become and true blue American citizen..do it the right way and give your heart to her

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