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Friday, December 24, 2004

USA: Thank an illegal immigrant this season (repost)

from The Enquirer (Cincinnati):

As we gather around for family feasts and more this holiday season, may I remind you of some blessings that you might not have considered?

When chowing down on that turkey, have you ever considered who processed that turkey? Probably migrant labor.

When you prepare your traditional dressing, stuffed with celery and onions, who picked and packed the celery and onions, right in the field, and zipped it onto your grocer, fresh, and clean? Probably - likely - migrant labor.

When enjoying the apples, oranges, grapes, etc., in your fruit salad, who nurtured the orchards and picked that fruit? Probably - likely- illegal migrant labor.

When watching football on your wide-screen plasma TV, in a warm, easily heated, comfortable home, who made it possible for you to have a pleasant holiday, at an inexpensive price? Probably - likely - illegal foreign migrant labor.

These people - who pick the apples, cut the celery, make our American wines, build your ample houses, wash the restaurant dishes - have brown hands and an aching back. They are denied drivers' license, tax refunds, bank accounts, retirement, medical insurance and documents because of one reason: They are "illegal."

Yet we want cheap, abundant food in our grocery stores, clean, low-cost rooms at our hotels, quick, efficient service at our favorite restaurants, and low wages on the construction sites. And how do we achieve that? By using illegal immigrant labor.

Rail against the corporations that bring them here by the truckloads, be shocked when dozens die in the Arizona desert, be upset when our borders cannot contain the constant flow of people coming here to work. But remember this: They are here because of one reason - you.

Yes, you. You want cheap food, cheap service, cheap products. And the only way your businesses can provide that is by taking the lowest bidder in the employment line. A line that you are not standing in.

What can you do to change all this? Start demanding from our elected officials that they stop turning a blind eye to these 10 million-plus people that wearily labor for us, so that we are comfortable and well-fed. Demand that these "invisible" people be given the credit they deserve, with proper documentation, and rights to live here, as well as work here. Do that, and we will add many millions to our holiday celebrations. They will thank you for your concern.

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