I wrote this as satire a few months ago, and had it saved as a draft – but I never thought it would become the literal truth.
“Give me your tired – but not your poor (we don’t want any more moochers) – your huddles masses (as long as they aren’t from Mexico or Muslim countries) yearning to be free (as long as they aren’t here to take our jobs).”
I honestly don’t know how much further this country can fall, or how much more it’s going to take before we realize how wrong we are and the hurt we’re directly causing to ourselves, our country, and our reputation.
It’s all too easy in this day and age to give in to a subtle (or not-so-subtle) fear of “foreigners” but it is important to remember that these are still just people like you and me.
Every time someone talks about fear of foreigners I just want to shake them & say “These are PEOPLE! They eat & sleep just like you; they have hopes and aspirations just like you, they love and they dream just like you, and putting aside different clothes and traditions they are STILL JUST PEOPLE who are not scary and should not be treated with any less decency than you would want to be treated with yourself.”
It is all to easy to group people you don’t know and apply simple stereotypes and pretend you know them – and always but especially in this day and age this is a terribly dangerous way to think; all the more so because it is so easy to do without even realizing you’re doing it. If you ever catch yourself using the phrase “those people,” you’ve probably just fallen into this trap.
But someone isn’t “those people” any more than you are “these people.” The lines we draw are arbitrary, regardless of what they’re based on. At the end of the day, we are all just people – different people to be sure, there’s all kinds of people – but still peopleall the same.
So the next time you see someone different from yourself, before you slap a stereotype and your preconceptions on them and convince yourself that you know that they are like and what they think, stop for a moment and remember: though they may look different or behave different, they are JUST PEOPLE and they are almost certainly more like you than you’d think.
I’ve been noticing a disturbing trend lately – people are becoming more and more xenophobic. If you don’t believe me, just take a look at all the anti-immigrant sentiments floating around these days. And in case you weren’t sure, the definition of xenophobic is:
An exaggerated or abnormal fear of strangers or foreigners.
A strong antipathy or aversion to strangers or foreigners.
Don’t think that this describes society today? Think again:
I hope you will notice that this is not confined to just the United States, either.
This is more than a little bit troubling.An awful lot of post-apocalyptic sci-fi stuff that shows nations with very strong anti-immigration laws – off the top of my head I can name V for Vendetta and Children of Men. I’m not saying that one necessarily follows the other (correlation does not imply causation, after all) – but still, it is very… troubling.
What is perhaps even more troubling is that this is not new. Anti-immigrant sentiment seems to come and go in cycles – looking back through history shows periods of very strong anti-immigrant sentiments in just about every country at one point or another in their history, and often multiple times. Here in the United States, even people like Ben Franklin voiced what would today be seen as very vocal anti-immigrant views.
Of course, that was over 200 years ago – you’d think we’d have made some sort of progress along the way, right?
Or is this another case of “those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it” or something?
Whatever happened to “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to be free?”
Something to think about before you head to the voting booth this year. (Assuming your vote gets recorded correctly; but that’s another blog post entirely.)