Human ignorance and Irony? Immigration issues

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by TK2K, Jul 10, 2009.

  1. TK2K macrumors 6502

    TK2K

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    #1
    So last weekend I was down in CT with my mom's relatives, they're all exceedingly rich, own large houses, general upper class society life... long story short the topic of immigration came up over diner, there was the generic 'illegal immigration is ruining the country, drain on society, they don't work as hard as us americans' etc, you've heard it all before. After about a half hour I just had to add something which had been on my mind for a while.
    Effectively what I said was this, 'look at all of you, half of you are irish, a third are jewish, a quarter are polish and the rest are russian, 100 years ago YOU were the 'dirty immigrants ruining america' there were 'too lazy to work' and 'leached off the system'. Your grandparents faced exactly the same kind of prejudice you are imposing upon latin american immigrants today!'

    needless to say, that did not go over too well. Does anyone else see this happening? Am i just off the deep end on this one?
     
  2. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604

    thegoldenmackid

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  3. Wotan31 macrumors 6502

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    #3
    I think you are. There's a distinct difference between legal immigration, and illegal immigration.

    Several of my friends are immigrants, having come to the US within the past decade. They are jumping through all the hoops, doing all the paperwork, going through all the proper legal processes do come to this country lawfully. They are also extremely pissed off at all the illegal immigrants who have dodged the whole process.

    It has nothing to do with stereotypes, hard worker vs. lazy, or any other nonsense like that. Hispanics, Jews, Asians, whatever. Ethnicity is irrelevant.

    The people sitting around your table who came from immigrant families - those families went through the legalization process, and also accepted American culture and lifestyle as their own. I.e. They became Americans.

    These illegal immigrants entering the country, not only are they dodging the law, but they also have no vested interest in becoming American. They don't want any part of American culture or to integrate into society. They want society to adapt to them and their ways. When your Irish or Jewish ancestors came here, did the towns put up signs and billboards in Gaelic and Hebrew so they could understand them? No! They learned to speak English. When your Irish and Hebrew ancestors came to the US, they likely gave up everything they had, got on a ship knowing it was a one-way trip. Many of these central and south american immigrants couldn't give two craps about the US, they're just here for work. They would just as easily go back to their home countries if there were well paying jobs there.

    Immigration is a good thing. Illegal immigration is quite bad, and a serious problem.
     
  4. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #4
    Happens all the time with me. I'm working on a family history and focusing on the people who immigrated to North America between 1798 and 1891.

    Just the use of the word, immigrant, is enough to make most people change the subject. IF the subject goes more in depth, invariably people will say, "Well, it was different back then." Of course, it was different but in ways that most people don't want to hear about. The rampant religious intolerance after the Revolution, the fact that Irish were not considered part of the "white" race, the blatant discrimination against non WASPs in the early 1900s, the Chinese Exclusion Act, etc.

    Unfortunately, the economic downturn is only going to make such blatant discrimination worse.
     
  5. Queso macrumors G4

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    #5
    But not Cherokee or Sioux? :p

    If the USA still had the same policies that were in place when the OP's grandparents arrived there would be no need for illegal immigration. They'd all be allowed in anyway.
     
  6. TK2K thread starter macrumors 6502

    TK2K

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    #6
    But the whole thing about accepting american culture really wasn't true..


    I mean, boston, new york, they all had whole irish districts, whole jewish districts, whole polish districts, I don't see how that's different from a mexican district or a Puerto rican district.

    Okay, fair point about illegal immigration, but there are FAR more legal immigrants in new england then illegal due to the fact it's 2000 miles from the boarder. So I guess in this case i'm focusing more on legal immigration, but fair point about the 'right way' vs 'wrong way'

    sorry, i just have to post this
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #7
    That depends - are your mother's family members here legally? Do they pay taxes, and generally contribute to society?

    Leeching the system is receiving benefits for which you pay no taxes. Many, if not all, illegal immigrants pay no taxes, but are happy to send their kids to public schools, get their health care for free at the county hospital, etc.

    I see both types here in Texas - immigrants who apply for visas, work legally, pay taxes, etc.; and those who work "under the table" and "leech" as you put it. The first group doesn't bother me at all; I have problems with the second group.

    But this raises an even bigger issue - that there are plenty of U.S.-born American citizens who fall into that second group. To me, the only difference between these and the immigrants is that one can be deported, and the other we're stuck with.

    I have no problem with people coming into the country legally (i.e. obeying the law), working, paying taxes, and contributing - whether they're citizens or not.
     
  8. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #8
    Very very good, and all too true. I agree with your original post and don't think you are "off the deep end" at all; actually, you have made a very valid point about how former outsiders, over time, have sometimes integrated so well that they have acquired, or adopted the prejudices of those whose ancestors discrimminated against them a century or so earlier.

    Cheers and good luck
     
  9. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #9
    You're woefully ignorant of late 19th and early 20th century immigration. The Little Italys, Chinatowns, mini Dublins, etc, didn't just spring up for marketing purposes but were a result of mostly illiterate people who couldn't function in their own language, much less in a foreign one. Those ghettos had signs in their respective languages and for the lucky few who were literate, newspapers in their native languages.

    Many of them really didn't give a crap about the US either. Many did return to their native countries. Italians and Finns were at the top of the list. After the race laws kicked in early in the 1900s, many immigrants came illegally through Canada or the Caribbean.

    What this country needs is a reasonable approach to immigration, not one that is punitive.
     
  10. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    #10
    Rich folks complaining that the poor immigrants are ruining society?? Who'da thunk it? :rolleyes:

    I hate that it appears that its often more of a rich vs poor conflict than one over actual issues.
     
  11. TK2K thread starter macrumors 6502

    TK2K

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    #11
    But it's not always, success of newly immigrated minorities is usually 'blamed' on affirmative action or something like that, which still implies lazyness etc.
     
  12. localoid macrumors 68020

    localoid

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    #12
    If only the American Indians had given thought to implementing stricter immigration policies sometime in the early-1500s...

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Dagless macrumors Core

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    #13
    I guess it's just the illegal vs legal debate. And you're talking about the US system which has no impact on me and I know nothing about so, cheerio.
     
  14. opinioncircle macrumors 6502a

    opinioncircle

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    #14
    Well I am witnessing first hand how tough the US immigration policies are. That's why I can "sort of" understand illegal immigration for people seeking to be in the US without the means that I have (knowledge and financial mainly).

    However I hope President Obama won't regularize all the unlawful immigrants. If he does so, I will not pursue legal immigration ways. What's the point? I have paid taxes to the IRS, gone through unnameable background checks, waited hundred of hours whether at the US embassies, or at the US airports and all of this so that some illegal dude can just be in the US and become a lawful citizen?!! That's just BS to me period.

    I am willing and able to take the long path to get where I want to get, but I don't want anybody else that doesn't walk with me to get there first...

    Immigration in a conversation is like religion or politics to me, you'll always feel some people just don't understand anything...
     
  15. DELLsFan macrumors 6502a

    DELLsFan

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    #15
    I couldn't have responded any better. +1
     
  16. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    #16
    Its people with this mindset that I hate. "Why can't they become more like me! a real American."

    Most of these people are working their asses off day in and out (and contributing to things such as sales tax while receiving nothing themselves) only to send any money they make to their families so they can scrape by an existence. People act like illegal immigrants just want to get around the rules when most of the time, they are just trying to survive in the world.
     
  17. mgguy macrumors 6502

    mgguy

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    #17
    All of these people are breaking federal law and many are committing felonies by not responding to deportation orders or coming back after deportation. Many are working very hard, but many are not working at all and are drawing on education, health care, municipal, and other services. While they do by necessity pay sales tax, they are generally not paying income taxes and other forms of taxes. They are also sending back money to their country of origin, so a lot of their income is not cycling back into our economy. They may be just trying to survive in the world, but that can also be said of thieves, burglars, shoplifters, poachers, and other types of lawbreakers.
     
  18. DELLsFan macrumors 6502a

    DELLsFan

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    #18
    Hate, eh? Interesting. You sound like you know first-hand what you're talking about ... but I should think the residents of CA, AZ, and TX are more familiar with the problems imported with these desperate, hard-working "survivors" than you or I. I'll bet the hospitals and police departments are keenly aware of the problems.

    We are a nation of immigrants, yes. We are also a nation of laws, yes - laws. There are procedures to follow to emigrate to the U.S. Follow them and obey our other laws, and I have no problem with you coming to my country to make a better life for yourself and your family.

    Sneak across the border to break our laws, hurt my family or friends, smuggle your drugs, and suck off the teat of our health, welfare and other social programs at my expense, and I have a problem with you and the scumbag employer who is exploiting you, me, and our system to save a few bucks.

    We are a Melting Pot of varying ethnicities and cultures who should want to be Americans; not some mosaic of independent cultures; of hyphenated-Americans unwilling to assimilate, unwilling to speak English, and unwilling to respect the time-honored and tested traditions and laws that make the USA a great place to live!

    I truly believe that surrendering our heritage and time-honored, common values to those unwilling to respect America and Americans has become a political tool and pathetic talking point to those who could care less about our history and its lessons. Under the guise of compassion and tolerance (for miscreants mainly), it seems to me we are being subverted from within by politicians and liberal policies that do nothing but give more power and control to the state. Amnesty to illegal immigrants means more votes and more power and control for a liberal, democratic party. The party is motivated to keep an immigrant and the rest of the electorate dependent on said state through its billions of dollars spent on compassionate entitlement programs.

    Meanwhile, our hospitals, health care system, border patrol, police, border towns, and our very souls are under attack - slowly being drained of money, life, liberty, and other pursuits the founders forged for us long ago. Yeah, I'm a proud American and I "hate" to see this happening under compassionate banners of "Change". YMMV. :cool:
     
  19. InvalidUserID macrumors 6502a

    InvalidUserID

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    #19
    Being in California, I'm all too familiar with illegal immigrants. Before I get too far in, I'd like to point out that I'm not too far removed from being new to this country as I'm a third-generation American.

    I'm sorry, but I don't buy into the whole "they are just trying to have a better life" or "they aren't hurting anyone" ideology. I remember a year or so ago, seeing some rallies on the evening news for allowing illegals to stay, go unpunished and given an avenue to citizenship. One woman said, and it just stuck in my mind, "I know what we're doing is wrong, but we won't stop because we just want a better life". Well, yeah...so does everyone else. I'd love to be rich but you don't see me robbing a bank. I'd love to have the car my neighbor does but you don't see me stealing his car.

    They are harming those who are trying to enter this country legally by circumventing the system. This would be like someone just cutting in front of you in the grocery line. As someone posted previously, why do things the right way when others aren't following the same rules?

    Personally, I don't like the way California has gone the past few years. More and more, I'm seeing more people who don't speak English and are disappointed when I say I don't speak Spanish. I don't enjoy having to press 1 to speak to someone in English. And I don't like the idea that some of my tax dollars are going to people who shouldn't be benefiting from them.


    While I do believe deeply in legal immigration, I have no sympathy for illegals. Call me a bad person, fine. My feeling is, if you are here illegally, get out. I don't want you here. I don't care about your situation, your story or what. If you want to be here, get in line and do the right thing. Others before you with harder lives and just as sad stories have done it the right way, so should you.
     
  20. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #20
    Precisely why I don't like some of the ideas being bantered about under the guise of "immigration reform." Bending over and allowing everyone already here illegally to stay here legally is taking the easy way out, throwing in the towel, and slapping about the face everyone who has gone through the process and tried to come here legally, and played by all the rules.

    Unfortunately, it's legal to send money out of the country. It's harmful to our economy; it's more beneficial if the money earned here is also spent here. The fundamental mechanism of a healthy economy is the volume of money changing hands, and the number of times it changes hands. When the money leaves the country that process stops completely.

    One radical idea to help curb illegal immigration - make sending money out of the country illegal to non-citizens. If you want to take money out of the country, on your person, go ahead - then brave your way trying to get back in, if you like. It would cut back on the number of people trying to enter illegally by taking away a large incentive.

    "Get around the rules" = "break the law" = "illegal."

    We're fine with legal immigration. Illegal immigrants, by definition, are breaking the law.
     
  21. Queso macrumors G4

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    #21
    Unbelievable! You are complaining about having to speak Spanish in a state named by the Spanish, where virtually all the place names are Spanish, and which was Spanish territory for twice as long as its been part of the United States!!

    You are the one forcing your language onto the locals, not the other way round :rolleyes:
     
  22. opinioncircle macrumors 6502a

    opinioncircle

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    #22
    You have a point. However California is part the United States, which language is English. I believe that the Little Italys and such have had a bad influence on the overall American society. Even though I see that immigrants had to feel a little at home with people from their home country, I do think that it doesn't really serve the purpose of living in such a melting pot as the US.
    When you see people in SF who aren't able to speak English (AT ALL by the way), and live by speaking Japanese or Korean, I find that the whole "we're a nation of immigrants idea" is a little false. But that's just my $.02
     
  23. Queso macrumors G4

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    #23
    1) Thanks to history, there are over 35 million US citizens who have Spanish as their first language.
    2) Most of the western United States used to be Northern Mexico.
    3) The USA does not have an official language.

    Canada accommodates multiple languages without skipping a beat. Why does the USA have such an issue with this?

    EDIT : BTW, you may want to read this document from 1849. Article XI Section 21. California was a bilingual state from the very beginning.
     
  24. it5five macrumors 65816

    it5five

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    #24
    AZ resident here. If I had the choice, I'd rather kick out all of the people with your mentality rather than the undocumented immigrants. The only problems I have with them are related to the racist reaction brought out in people like our Sheriff and his supporters.
     
  25. InvalidUserID macrumors 6502a

    InvalidUserID

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    #25
    Yes, and? As pointed out, California is part of the United States, not Mexico. For me, that trumps everything else including history.

    Don't worry though cheese, California will soon enough be indistinguishable from Mexico as the population of hispanics is set to overtake whites within the next 10 years or so (if I remember correctly from a recent report, it may even be sooner).

    Once that happens, I'll be more than happy to move closer to my relatives in Hawaii where illegals are far and few between.
     

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