Dolores dice...Illegal Alien vs. Born in the U.S.A.

Dear Dolores:

I’m being haunted by a question I never thought I would be. I’m a first-generation Latina born in the U.S.A. who identifies totally with our culture but who also feels very proud to be an American. I have never felt as torn as I do today as a result of what’s happening with the “immigration issue.” You see, I have strong negative feelings about foreigners coming to the United States illegally. Am I doing an injustice to my own people?

—M&M in Cyberspace

Dear M&M:

 You are not the only one feeling torn on this issue, and that’s because there hasn’t been an honest, open discussion among ourselves about the impact of undocumented workers on our community. I hope we will have such conversación soon. But one way or another, the current revolú shall pass. After all, this country was founded by illegal aliens. Those pilgrims who arrived on the Mayflower hundreds of years ago did not have visas (and neither did Cristóbal Colón). For the moment, to deal with the wave of hidden bigotry pouring out of so many Americans, we need to show some compassion and solidarity with our hard-working hermanos indocumentados. In the eyes of the anti-immigrants, the difference between U.S.-born, documented and undocumented Latinos seems to be blurring quite rapidly—which, in a manner of speaking, puts us all on the same boat. Now, por si las moscas, I always carry my U.S. passport in la cartera when I parade around in my “Superman was an illegal alien” T-shirt—just to stir their bilirrubina even more.

—Sí se puede, D

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