Column missed the point on immigration

FORUM

This is a response to Publisher Roger Harnack’s Friday, Feb. 17, column in The Daily Sun. With all due respect, I think you may have missed the point of the Day Without Immigration.

Your story about your family’s migration from Europe is very similar to mine. I believe we are both proud of the courage and ambition of our ancestors. They took big risks and made sacrifices in the hope of creating a bright future for their families, and we can attest that they were successful.

I believe there is at least one significant difference between the migration of our ancestors and that of more recent families from Mexico. That difference is a change in immigration opportunities. When our families came over — about one hundred years ago — they were most likely compelled by advertising in Europe and they were welcomed at the border.

The motivation of young Mexican men and women who immigrated — without authority — in the past 50 or so years, is probably much the same as that of our ancestors’, but the risks were greater. There was no easy path to citizenship. Maybe their courage was greater. Maybe the need to escape perpetual poverty was greater.

Maybe the point of the Day Without Immigration wasn’t about you and me.

Patrick Walsh, Outlook



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