One of the things that amazes me every time the subject of immigration comes up, is the view of some poeple that there is something fundamentally wrong with the millions of people who want to come to the US to find a better job, a better education, a better life. You know what I'm talking about -- the nasty comments about immigrants being lazy, only wanting to take advantage of our welfare system or medical services, being selfish or self-centered.
The determination to take care of your family, even if it means traveling hundreds or thousands of miles away from them, even if it means risking imprisonment, low wages and harsh working conditions, can only be seen as a testament to the power of love and the human drive to lead a dignified life. How the willingness to make such sacrifices and face such hardships so one's family can live a better life can be called selfish, lazy, usurious... well, it beats me.
If my child was ill and had no access to a doctor, I would want to bring it to a doctor. If my family had to go hungry, or do without shoes, I would want to find a decent job to give them that. If I had to live forever in fear of my own government, or my neighbors, I would want to flee with my family to someplace safer. How could that possibly be evil?
One of the most basic precept of secular humanism is that you should not do to others what you would not want them to do to you, which is, of course, the golden rule taught by so many religions. Denying medical care, safety, or jobs to people who need them, in my books, counts as something I wouldn't want people to do to me.I find it even more bewildering that those kinds of comments, along with disdainful regard for immigrants maintaining their culture and customs, come from people whose ancestors -- and often not so distant ancestors - were once in the exact same boat -- poor, looking for a better life, discriminated against, acused of not being willing to assimilate as they chose to speak German, Italian, Yiddish, Swedish, Dutch, dressed in their own clothing, maintained their own religions (yes, the Amish are still here to this day, as are the Quakers, and the Christian Scientists, etc, etc).
Progressive Muslim, feminist, mom, writer, mystic, lover of the universe and Doug Schmidt, cellist, theologian and imam.