Every year around the July 4th holiday we hear a lot of patriotic rhetoric, and many profess love for our country. Yet can love be prefaced with hatred? To some individual, love for the United States translates to hatred for individuals, who they perceive to be here illegally. They go back to the birth of America but forget that at that time their forefathers were “illegal” in this land.
As Charles Garcia wrote in a piece by CNN, the term “illegal Immigrant” is a slur. This term was omitted in the majority opinion in US v. Arizona, which recognized the contribution of immigrants in the modern US society. Mr. Garcia notes that unauthorized stay in the US is a civil offense, while the term “illegal” is generally reserved for criminal offense.
The term aside, there is a prevailing attitude in our country that the face of a Us Citizen is white. The term “All American” generally stands for blond white people. And even with a black President, we still think of the face of immigrants as colored. Its so ingrained that the former president of American Immigration Lawyer’s Association wrote an immigration blog with Jeremy Lin. But not with say Steve Nash, (from South Africa/ Canada) or Dirk Nowitzki (from Germany).
Its sad, but for us, colored people, even if we are born in this country, people ask where are you from? And if you answer a city in the United States, they ask where is your parent from. No one ever asked Scalia that question, even though his father was from Sicily.
We are all Americans if we live and work to better this country. And for those of us who chose this country as home, maybe we love this country even more. We werent simply born here, we consciously chose it.