Two years ago, I wrote a blog about immigration in the United States and the lack of an immigration policy. I am reposting this here for you to read today because I think it still applies, and absolutely nothing has been done to change the conditions under which people come to find safety in the United States.
Instead, we seem to have taken a step backwards, and for the second time in American history, we are shamefully isolating and imprisoning people who have the misfortune of having to leave their homes and uproot their lives to seek asylum.
Nobody does this for pleasure.
I cannot believe that two years later, we still have not dealt with the immigration problems at our borders. We as a nation should not be repeating the shameful behavior of America during WWII, when we imprisoned and isolated the Japanese-Americans and other nationalities. This even included people from Finland whose homeland had been invaded by Russia and were trying to escape to America. They were arrested at sea and sent to the immigration camps.
This was not America’s shining hour, and neither is our lack of policy today at the borders.
Reposted from 7/14/2018
Today there are more displaced people in the world than there have ever been at any time in history. According to the United Nations, 67 million people are desperately seeking refuge somewhere. This vast displacement of people has caused a major crisis, and a growing crisis, to every nation in the developed world.
Huge numbers of refugees and asylum-seekers are being forced to live under unacceptable conditions while they desperately try to gain legal admission to any country that will accept them. The current systems are not solving the problem of massive immigration. It is incumbent upon the governments of all nations, the United Nations, the European community, and even the World Economic Forum to redefine immigration programs. It is also imperative that all of us, worldwide, find ways to aid refugees facing extraordinary challenges.
There is a sense of destabilization that occurs when a large population of different races, religions, and customs overwhelm an existing culture. As The United States does not have any viable immigration plan, these fears have empowered this administration and its tyrannical zero immigration policy. This policy has led to cruel and inhumane treatment of desperate people.
The present anti-immigration policies of The United States, such as the deportation of people who have lived here for many years and the separation of children from their parents at the border, is absolutely not acceptable. It is not in any way a plan or solution to the massive refugee problem, nor is it a solution to immigration. It is tyrannical, unacceptable and totally short-sided for The United States.
America should welcome immigrants. We have almost full employment and we are an aging population with an historically low birth-rate. This confluence of circumstances can bring development and growth to a halt in The United States. Immigration is an important way of reversing the tide. In order to grow the economy we will need skilled workers to fill future jobs in farming, building infrastructure, and other trades.
It is often costly and usually takes an inordinately long time for people to apply and gain legal entry into The United States. There should be more entry ports and consulates so that this process could be shortened, and so that asylum-seekers could be dealt with more quickly and humanely.
Legal entry into The United States should have certain requirements. Obviously no criminal record, but also English should be required. Instead of having internment camps at the border, there should be English language schools.
No one should be allowed a green-card until they have a working knowledge of English. After all, English is the language of the country and it is what binds Americans together along with the social contract, the laws of the land, and the culture. English must be the primary language. Without it we lose the ability to take on jobs, assimilate, or feel a sense of patriotic love of country.
We as a nation have lost our moral compass. We must re-establish our own social and moral values in order to be able to impart them with impunity to the new arrivals. This should be done even as they are learning to speak English.
Another problem facing host countries receiving an overwhelmingly large number of refugees is that these people tend to seek their own kind. In turn they set up their own enclaves within the existing communities. Unless immigrants have families to go to, it would make sense to spread them out and direct them to areas of the country where they are needed and would be welcomed. For a period of years, their choice of settlement should be restricted. This would prevent them from forming separate and often dissonant communities.
Most communities have activities for all age-groups in which everybody can participate regardless of race, creed, or religion. It is simply easier and less threatening for communities to accept newcomers if they arrive as individuals.
It is abundantly clear that The United States nor other nations of the world can any longer run immigration systems with antiquated methodologies and concepts. This seems to be a time when America has to redefine itself just as we did at the time of the American Revolution and again during the Civil War.
White supremacists and religious fanatics cannot be allowed to shape the world in their own image. We, as Americans, must not allow it. These extremists are only a small part of our country, but they are powerful and have taken over the Republican party.
Our values are not, should not, and must not be so narrowly defined as they would have them be.