Wednesday, May 16, 2007


From New America Media

A trend of targeted violence is erupting.

When you hear "immigration," most people think of Mexico, or the Latino population. I can't disagree that even I tend to focus on the plight of our Latina/o sisters and brothers when I see their peaceful protests raided by police, or racist signs about immigrants needing to "go home," or when I witness billboards like the one I pass everyday that has a picture of a White man, arms folded staring into the camera, wearing a sheriff's outfit that reads, "NO ALIENS ALLOWED HERE. We do not support illegal immigration."

I am a child of immigrants. My parents came to this country from the Philippines over thirty years ago and have endured more stories of racism, shame, and forced assimilation than I can possible communicate or fathom. Their stories are real yet unbelievable. Most people wouldn't believe that my father lost his front tooth because a stranger threw a glass bottle at his face while he crossed the street. Most people wouldn't believe that my mother received a failing grade in her nursing clinical courses, not because of academic performance in which she was receiving good scores, but because her instructor wrote, "Language Difficulties" in the side margin and she was asked to leave the program after years of academic slaving. Never mind the lawyers who told her she'd never win a case in Ohio about racial and ethnic discrimination, "the jury would think exactly like the instructor," they advised. And they were right. My mother is perfectly bi-lingual and speaks English more frequently than Tagalog. Whose story would you believe?

When I think of immigration I think of my father's frequent fights he had with strangers who demanded he return to his own country. I think of my parents strength and how often even I have overlooked their stories of survival and bitterness. When I read stories like the one above, I think of my father's angry retort to that racist demand to go back to one's own country.

He replied, "I'll go back to mine if you go back to yours. This isn't your country. It was founded on stealing it from Native Americans. This is their country. So I'll go back, if you go back, that is, if you know your history. Do you?"

Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!


  1. Nice post. Got to you from scotti's comment spam blog, so at least something good came of his stupidity.

  2. I am sorry that your family has gone through such degradation. Good for your father for saying what he did.

    A month (or so) ago someone told me that they were angry at the *&^* Jews who thought they could move wherever they want and take over other people's lands. When I asked her how she could live on the Native American's land, she ignorantly/discriminatingly said "that's different." Sure. Easy for her to say as a Caucasian Christian.

    I don't know who originally said it, but "you can tell the values of a society by how it treats it neediest." Perhaps it is also true for its immigrants.

  3. Anonymous1:07 PM

    No American I know is against legal immigration. Most,, in fact, welcome higher quotas and more help for Legal's the illegal aspect of it that bothers folks.
    No one should have bottles thrown at them or Failed for no reason, but the fact is illegal anything, costs money and money we just can't keep pouring into a segment of society that has totally disregarded our laws from the get go. It's been proven by the Bush Administration, By the Catholic church and other social services groups that while legal immigrants bring much to our society, illegal immigrants cost much more than they add. In terms of services alone they pay somewhere around $9,000 in taxes ( mainly sales since they most often don't pay income) and take about $40,000 per year in services.
    The difference in most people's minds between the Take over of Native American's lands and the Jewish take over of Palestine is that the problems in the Mid east are happening NOW and the take over of North America happened about 100 years ago- in some cases more. And it happened in a different type of world....where take over was still the norm. There is no one left alive that actively took over Native Lands. And if you want to get right down to it...Europe was taken over from it's original inhabitants several times over, that does not excuse people coming to any country outside the bounds of the law and demanding services, the right to vote, other accommodations because they manage to break the law.
    In the minds of many Americans there is a difference between 'immigrant' ( legal) and 'alien' or 'invader' ( both illegal) and this is only going to get worse before it gets better.
    Personally I think people should be able to live where they want to live - and that immigration laws of ALL countries should reflect that. but if I moved to another country illegally I would not be greeted with the tolerance that folks seem to think Americans should show illegal immigrants who come here.
    I've wanted to live in Canada all my life...would anyone there ( or here) support my "right" to swim across the border, get a job, get housing, and healthcare and what not at taxpayer expense? It's the same thing.


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