Monday, February 11, 2008

Bicultural vs. safe?

On the topic of assimilation, integrating a guest culture into a host culture, etc., are a group of letters (A17, subscription required) and a few miscellaneous posts from bloggers in Australia and elsewhere (one from MK, another from Aurora). Below I have reprinted excellent excerpts from several letters.

Gayla M. in Ft. Collins, CO, supporting biculturalism:
...Respect for another's culture is a two-way street.

Perhaps we need to ask ourselves if the underlying motivation of our most recent worries about immigration is respect for the law of the land or fear of those who appear in some way to be different from us. If it is the former, we should either enforce the law consistently and justly or change the laws to adapt...If it is the latter, then we should at least admit to our hypocrisy.

Jessee R. in Pulaski, VA, about the original article: [emphasis mine]

Your article portrays the current illegal immigration problem as just another chapter in the long-running immigration issue in this country, as though there were no difference between the millions of illegal immigrants who have come in recent years and the millions of legal immigrants who have come in previously in the country's history. The issue is different now. They are here illegally.

And finally, Patricia M. in Sun Lakes, AZ, echoing Jessee:

It isn't legal immigration that Arizonans have an issue with. The problem is with those who come across the border illegally, taking jobs, expecting everyone from employers to store clerks to accommodate their refusal to learn English and imposing strains on public schools, the welfare system, health care and law enforcement.

I won't try to change your views on this, and I admit that, technically, the first Europeans on U.S. soil were "illegal" too, but we should not let ourselves be overly taken advantage of. There are legal venues to become a citizen. They're put in place because they work.

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