As someone who has followed the immigration debate for decades and who disagrees with blanket amnesty for undocumented immigrants, I have a response to Joshua Hoyt's February Sounding Board on immigration reform ("Get off the fence").
Rational argument needs to replace the emotional shouting that advocates of "social justice" aim at so called "racist anti-immigration" opponents. As an international relations student in the 1970s, I learned of the cost of "brain drain," when highly educated students and professionals freely immigrate to wealthier countries but have little incentive to return to and develop their home countries.
This still occurs, but today we also have a less-educated group of immigrants who desire and expect immediate acceptance and privileges that they are not legally entitled to.
The desire to help individual immigrants conflicts with the goal of helping entire countries. Social justice may be better served by requiring reverse migration, thereby allowing these hard working and brave individuals to rebuild their home countries with greater social justice for all.
People seem so afraid of immigrants who do not speak "our language." Yet English is not the official language of the United States. So many Catholics lament the number of Latinos who join non-Catholic Christian denominations, yet they complain about the Latinos in their local parishes. Ironically, some of these same parishes would have no future without the Latino influx.
The Catholic Church in the United States has always reached out to immigrants. That is not going to change--because we are Roman Catholics, not American Catholics.
Brother Alan Parham, ES.C.
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|Title Annotation:||you may be right: letters|
|Article Type:||Letter to the editor|
|Date:||Apr 1, 2010|
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