Wednesday, March 17, 2010

What if we sent them all home?

This morning I opened this email...
Dear Mr. Rand,
Recently you sent us a letter encouraging us to renew our lapsed membership in AARP by the requested date. I know it is not what you were looking for, but this is the most honest response I can give you. Our gap in coverage is merely a microscopic symptom of the real problem, a deepening lack of faith. While we have proudly maintained our membership for several years and have long admired the AARP goals and principles, regrettably, we can no longer endorse it's abdication of our values. Your letter specifically stated that we can count on AARP to speak up for our rights, yet the voice we hear is not ours. Your offer of being kept up to date on important issues through DIVIDED WE FAIL presents neither an impartial view nor the one we have come to embrace. We do believe that when two parties agree all the time on everything presented to them, one is probably not necessary. But, when the opinions and long term goals are diametrically opposed, the divorce is imminent. This is the philosophy which spawned our 200 years of government.
Once upon a time, we looked forward to being part of the senior demographic. We also looked to AARP to provide certain benefits and give our voice a power we could not possibly hope to achieve on our own. AARP gave us a sense of belonging which we no longer enjoy. The Socialist politics practiced by the Obama administration and empowered by AARP serves only to raise the blood pressure my medical insurance strives to contain. Clearly a conflict of interest there! We do not understand the AARP posture, feel greatly betrayed by the guiding
forces that we expected to map out our senior years and leave your ranks with a great sense of regret. We mitigate that disappointment with the relief of knowing that we are not contributing to the problem anymore by renewing our membership. There are numerous other organizations which offer discounts without threatening our way of life or offending our sensibilities.

This Presidential Administration scares the living daylights out of us. Not just for ourselves, but for our proud and bloodstained heritage. But even more importantly for our children and grandchildren. Washington has rendered Soylent Green a prophetic cautionary tale rather than a nonfiction scare tactic. I have never in my life endorsed any militant or radical groups, yet now I find myself listening to them. I don't have to agree with them to appreciate the fear which birthed their existence. Their borderline insanity presents little more than a balance to the voice of the Socialist mindset in power. Perhaps I became American by a great stroke of luck in some cosmic uterine lottery, but in my adulthood I CHOOSE to embrace it and nurture the freedoms it represents as well as the responsibilities it requires.
Your website generously offers us the opportunity to receive all communication in Spanish. ARE YOU KIDDING??? Someone has broken into our 'house', invaded our home without our invitation or consent. The President has insisted we keep the perpetrator in comfort and learn the perp language so we can communicate our reluctant welcome to them.
I DON'T choose to welcome them.
I DON'T choose to support them.
I DON'T choose to educate them.
I DON'T choose to medicate them, pay for their food or clothing.
American home invaders get arrested.
Please explain to me why foreign lawbreakers can enjoy privileges on American
soil that Americans do not get?

Why do some immigrants have to play the game to be welcomed and others only have to break & enter to be welcomed?

We travel for a living. Walt hauls horses all over this great country, averaging over 10,000 miles a month when he is out there. He meets more people than a politician on caffeine overdose. Of all the many good folks he enjoyed on this last 10,000 miles, this trip yielded only ONE supporter of the current administration. One of us is out of touch with mainstream America . Since our poll is conducted without funding, I have more faith in it than one which is power driven.

We have decided to forward this to everyone on our mailing list, and will encourage them to do the same. With several hundred in my address book, I have every faith that the eventual exponential factor will make a credible statement to you.
I am disappointed as hell.
I am scared as hell.
I am MAD as hell, and I'm NOT gonna take it anymore!

Walt & Cyndy
Miller Farms Equine Transport
It checks out on as an actual email

Now, you reading this may have a resounding sense of agreement with that email...and that's okay. I felt myself moved to write about it not necessarily because I agree or disagree...but because it moved me to question what if we DID just send all the immigrants home? Maybe it would be good for us but I think in more of a "This is going to hurt you more than it does me" way.

The area we live in has a strong Mexican presence.
Yes, there are times we pass comment on the state of their yards or the disrepair of their homes but more often than not, we are admiring their sense of family and community and always their work ethic. Parents know where their kids are and the men collectively look after the neighborhood. Children sit down to dinner with families and extended families and sometimes neighbor's family's as they share what they have with those who don't.
And more often than not...we notice how HAPPY they are, even if they don't have the best looking house on the block.

If we sent them all home, we could bulldoze the area and make way for a new neighborhood full of lots waiting to be developed and homes that will eventually be left to the foreclosure monster that becomes more of an eyesore than what we started with.

If we sent them all home, there would be jobs for the millions of us currently out of work. The citrus and construction industries would be hardest hit and 'now hiring' signs would go up around every corner. But would we take the work?
Would you pick oranges for $8.00 an hour ?
Most likely not and employers would be forced to raise the wages to something more acceptable...say $12 or $15 which would eventually make for a more expensive Orange. I would gladly pay that increase if I knew it was supporting my neighbor.
Would you?
That increase would probably mean employers would have to cut back on benefits. Aren't we already talkinga bout this problem? Employers don't want to be mandated into health care benefits for their workers because it's already hard enough to turn a profit. And I dare say many of those SAME people want the spanish speakers to 'just go home' so this could turn into a pretty vicious cycle.

Maybe if we as a country weren't so hard fast looking for the most efficient way to produce things CHEAPLY and recognized that the 'best deal' includes factors that are more important than price...we might once again understand the American Dream.

We beg for immigration reform and complain about illegal immigrants, but are we willing to pay more for almost everything we need and use in our lives if they are deported? Could we afford to live here if they all went home?

Cyndi's words stirred an ugly feeling in my heart
I DON'T choose to welcome them.

I DON'T choose to support them.
I DON'T choose to educate them.
I DON'T choose to medicate them, pay for their food or clothing.

Isn't part of who we are as a country CHOOSING to welcome?
I don't know this for sure about Cyndy and Walt, but the person who sent me this email is a 'strong Christian'
and agreed wholeheartedly with the ideals put forth in the letter and I hear this same sentiment more and more often from my Christian friends.

Really? Not so sound corny but What Would Jesus Do?
It's these sentiments that have always made me 'iffy' about church (And I'm in school pursuing an MDiv, so don't question my faith) and now 'iffy' about the idea of 'citizenship.'
No, I don't want to leave the country
Yes, I fly a flag off my porch with pride
But I am dissappointed in the close-minded ideas that are seeping into the culture.

It doesn't have anything to do with a label

It's about being collectively human
If we can't do it collectively...we'll try it on our own
and somewhere in the collective unconscious is the knowledge that
DIVIDED we fall

What does Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness look like to you?

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