Why we should be welcoming immigrants to our shores

Let’s talk a moment about immigration. There are many people in this country, as there have always been, who hold the view that immigrants and those who desire to cross our boarders legally or illegally are pariahs, pose some imminent danger, and should be sent back to where they came from. I’ve read all manner of talk, particularly from the conservative Right who hold the view that allowing Illegal Aliens a pathway to citizenship would somehow diminish, dilute, or degrade our great Nation. These individuals love to tout the law and say “you must enter this country legally.” They live in a terrifying world where most things different are to be feared; let us set the record straight, nothing could be further from the truth. Immigrants, with the notable exception of terrorists, have always made this country great and welcoming them to our shores will have a positive effect on our flagging economy by infusing additional consumers to purchase goods and services.

Allow me to relate a story about one such immigrant who, granted, is different owing to her origins, she was born in Brazil and I don’t know her legal status but I’m confident that she is now a naturalized citizen of the US but regardless of her legal status; she is kind, industrious, thoughtful and possessed of all those qualities that we Americans believe are uniquely are own.

Just prior to Winter Storm Juno’s arrival in New England and storm preparation progressed at a fever pitch, you might say panic. Folks were rightfully concerned with protecting their property, their families and themselves. I had limited supplies of food and water on hand in my apartment, no way to get to the grocery store, and the next scheduled trip to Market Basket had just been cancelled along with my endocrinology appointment, rescheduled for the second time for Tuesday afternoon. The Doctor’s appointment was no big deal and I easily called to re- reschedule, yet again, but grocery shopping was a ‘must do’. I had resigned myself to being price gouged by the bandits at Donelan’s and determined that I would take my little two-wheeler and walk if I must to obtain my supplies. The evening before the storm’s arrival I received a phone call from one of the baristas who worked at the Acton Coffee House asking me if I was all prepared for what the Media outlets were touting as the “Storm of the century”, “The Blizzard of 2015”, and “Something Historic”. I told this kind and thoughtful woman that I was in no way prepared and explained my lack of adequate larder. Well she never missed a beat, immediately asked me when I would be home the next day and offered to take me grocery shopping at a Market Basket of my choice. The thoughtful soul didn’t just drive me to make my purchases, she stayed with me though out the entire process; battling the panic driven mob, helping me to shop, driving me home and assisting me to haul my booty up three flights of stairs to my apartment door forsaking her own preparations and making sure that this little old man was in good condition to weather the impending atmospheric event.

Perhaps my daughters would have taken a day off from work to assist their dad if they had thought of it or been asked, I would like to believe they would have but they didn’t. I’m sure that I have friends from my church, West Concord Union that would have been willing to help if asked but I didn’t. No, someone who I knew only as the attractive woman who serves my coffee had the presence of mind, kindness of heart, and thoughtfulness of spirit to check in on someone in need to see if they could use some assistance and did what others did not.

So-I wouldn’t-say anything derogatory about immigrants within my earshot if I were you because I will not let it pass lightly; too many in this country are already guilty of that. Oh, and by the way; this woman’s only son serves in the US Military defending those who fear immigrants like his mother.

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