Friday, May 19, 2006

Immigration

If you read this blog, you probably know that we are permanent residents, but not citizens. We have been permanent residents for 5+ years and now we qualify to apply for citizenship. That was about a year ago and we have not made the move to apply yet. I just can not forsee us giving up citizenship in South Africa. That is a huge deal to me and I am not ready to even embrace the idea. We are unable to vote until we are citizens and that just suits me fine! I wouldn't know what to vote anyhow. I am very conflicted politically. I would on a quick surface scan describe myself as Democrat when it comes to economics, global policy, defense, social justice and some moral issues. I would describe myself as Republican also in a few areas related to moral issues (probably not the ones you would think).

But before anyone is offended, let me just explain that we have lived in the US for 15 years total,
6 of those on "student visas" 4 on "religious worker" visas and the last 5 as "green card holders" - never illegal! And, paying taxes the whole time (except when we did not earn enough as student employees).

I have tried to contain myself during the last month or so as people battle out the issues and implications over immigration. I have a lot to say, but would like to maintain my friends so I am not saying it all, but this is crucial.

1. When we become gloabl citizens, we see that people are just like us. Kids in Lithuania watch MTV and post on MySpace. Moms in Jordan order Pizza on nights they are too tired to cook. Families in South Africa, New Zealand, Greece - picnic in the park and enjoy days on the beach. Mothers and Fathers in Sudan, Paraguay, India, Rwanda cry the same tears when their children are taken in death. When you see people and realize they are just like you, you are more likely to care about their plight and want to do something to change it!

2. When talking about the current issues of limited borders etc, remember that regardless of your take on people flow across the world, no human being is ever illegal or illegitimate. Their status may be in question but their humanity is not!

That was a little preachy and so I will end now!

3 comments:

Amy said...

Preach on! You have a perspective we need to hear.

Donna said...

Hmm! Interesting, Arlene. Maybe you should be aiming at a bigger audience with that perspective!

Alex said...

Interesting to here your perspective on the immigration issue. I'm pretty ambiguous on it myself...too complicated for easy answers.

Saw your comment on Mike's blog about Derrick turning 50. You should've let us all know earlier, I could've harassed him some Sunday at 9:00 before I headed back to Coppell! Oh well, probably better if someone does it who he knows better, I've only talked to him a time or two.

-Alex F