Category Archives: immigration

Fear of Immigration? or of change?

  The following was an editorial posted and shared on facebook. This was our discussion regarding it:
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 along side 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 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.

Rosemary LaBonte


I sincerely hope this letter gets read by millions of people all across the nation!!

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  • Brenda Harrison

    What she doesn’t spell out is how impossible it is to become a citizen now or how difficult it just to get a green card to work in this country..I am 2nd generation American..My grandfather only waited 5 months to become a naturalized citizen…and he didn’t speak english very well and my grandmother never learned English but their children did..isn’t that what matters?these people are just trying to feed their families at any cost! I would too

    13 hours ago · Unlike · 1
  • Daniel O’Grady

    Okay…no. While I agree that people should come here of legal means if possible, that’s not always the case.first off, juan gomez and his family come here to work shit jobs, for shit pay, because we don’t want to. Personally, until we all start picking or own fruit and vegetables, washing or own cars, landscaping our own yards, building or own houses, and bering nanny to or own kids…then we can complain. As for this womans “history lesson”? No.
    Her assumption about immigrants in the 1900s is more steven spielberg then reality. A good percentage were illegal or stowaways. They didn’t change names to fit in, they were forced to. They made no pledges to uphold laws, organized crime was something the islands, irish and french brought with them. They did not make english a rule, hence the reason peoples grandmothers even today still don’t speak english, not to mention the formation of country/language specific burroughs in big cities.

    The ideas of a japanese man fighting on or side in wwii is preposterous. First off, the military was extremely segregated still, and second, we shipped all the japanese americans off to internment camps. As for germans? Many shipped of to germany to fight for the motherland, AT THEIR parents insistence. There are hundreds of stories of men having to kill men they knew growing up, or send to pow camps, because they were german soldiers…

    But really, what I don’t get is how this person makes such a distinction as to call them different types of immigrants now? Or forefathers escaped tyranny, famine, oppression and poverty. Hell, the likely hood that the first O’Grady to come here was illegal is almost 100%. The people running the border today are escaping the same things.except a cuban can’t ask permission to leave, and mexican/south americans can’t afford to. Have you read the citizenship test? You’d fail it. I would to. Hell any american would, AND IT’S OR COUNTRY THE QUESTIONS ARE ABOUT. The legal way is hard, nigh impossible, long and expensive. For a man or woman watching her children starve, or her sons threatened to be forced into a guerrilla militia, or die from cold or great, there is only one choice. Flee to the one country that has arms open. We were built on immigrants, immigrants just like todays. The only reason people see then differently is no one wants to think their family was the same, and movies have painted the early immigrants in a very romanticized light.

    13 hours ago via mobile · Unlike · 3
  • Brenda Harrison Applause Daniel!!!

    12 hours ago · Like · 1
  • Gypsy Anna

    Daniel you made very valid points, that I too was thinking of as I read her letter. She over-glamorized the immigrations of the past and completely left out how the “different” ones were treated when they got here, or even how some were forced to come here and were treated like mere animals, bought and sold for slavery to support the European immigrants. In fact, the only immigrants that had it well, were the white European immigrants who were lawyers and statesmen, and endowed with money to start up the big plantations, the banks, the factories, etc. The Irish were treated horribly, as were the Chinese, as were the Native Americans and Mexicans. Sadly, nothing has really changed except the process of legally entering the country, it is much more expensive and can take YEARS before being granted. When you’re desperate to feed your family you don’t have years to wait. You need work now, and in America, there are plenty of jobs available that others have no desire to undertake. Even now, with the economy as bad as it is, not many will take on those jobs, so they are still available for those who are willing to work hard to feed their families. If we want change, then we need to make it easier, not harder, for immigrants to legalize their status, so they can be part of this country–vote, community involvement and volunteerism, learning English, and living without fear of being caught and deported would allow them to truly contribute the gifts and talents to their communities, they could become fully involved… and maybe that’s what the real issue is, where the fear of allowing immigration to be made easier. Kind of like parents of the Mormon religion telling their children not to associate with the child down the street because that family ISN’T Mormon. We fear change. We fear the new and different.

    12 hours ago · Like · 2
  • Brenda Harrison Wow…Is that Mormon comment common??? Or is that in the past???

    12 hours ago · Like
  • Brenda Harrison have some really smart friends!!!

    12 hours ago · Like
  • Gypsy Anna Still going on, actually. My youngest daughter, (she is 21 now) faced that kind of treatment everyday at school. Girls who were Mormons would be “encouraged” by their parents not to associate with her because she wasn’t a “member”. But, this seems to only happen in Utah, because we didn’t face that kind of treatment in Washington state.

    12 hours ago · Like · 1
  • Michelle Best I agree with my mom, It’s really only a Utah thing and I believe that it’s because that’s the majority religion here. In washington Mormon’s are a minority and need to accept all regardless for fear of being cast out the other direction. I am just grateful for the way that I was raised – to accept everyone for WHO they are, not what they believe in or look like. Thank you parents.

    12 hours ago · Unlike · 2
  • Daniel O’Grady Well….I remember in CA, when I stopped going to church/seminary, one of the girls actually used the whole “hes not one of us anymore” thing, and in WA we totally ostricised people at school…I remember Lee telling me that being friends with Ross was bad for me because he was “christian” not Mormon…>_>…but he’s a whole nother bag of weird potato chips….if you know what I mean

    10 hours ago · Unlike · 2
  • Brenda Harrison I thought Mormons were christian?

  • Gypsy Anna they are, and when they are truly living their religion, there is no “holier than thou attitude;” merely one of gratitude, charity, worship, and devotion; just as Jesus taught us by example and word. But, just as with any group, be it religion, race, community or whatever, there will always be those who are afraid of the “outsiders”… they want things to stay the same and not risk change. Change, to them, is not a means of personal growth, but something to be feared and kept away for as long as possible. Outsiders represent new ideas, new cultures and customs, new music, new ways of worship… To those who are afraid of change, it is like shaking their whole world up, and that’s something no one likes! We all like to feel comfortable, safe, secure and have our lives somewhat predictable most of the time and when you are among people you know and share so much with, you get that feeling of security, of belonging. Allowing “outsiders” to penetrate their ranks is not something that can be allowed for those to whom change is so terrifying.

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