Thursday, March 20, 2008

A Response to a Nonsense Chain Email

Here is my response to one of those nonsense emails making the rounds (original email follows):
Neocon revisionist history -- pure rubbish.

Let's see:

Of course, we all know that Japanese were interned during World War II. But, did you know that the feds forced Italian Americans -- those who had not yet naturalized citizens -- to carry identity cards that labeled them as "resident aliens?" (My Polish grandparents, who had immigrated to the US some 30 years before the war, had not naturalized at that time either) In addition, Italians living in the "war zones" on the West Coast were forced to move, and some were interned for up to two years.

In addition, once Italy declared war on the US, the feds closed Italian newspapers and schools.

But, the US military certainly noted the differences between American solders. Italian Americans played pivotal roles in the Sicilian and Italian campaigns. As did all soldiers who had knowledge of culture, language and geography.

Many German Americans adopted Americanized versions of their surnames in response to threats and attacks (during both world wars). During World War II, the feds arrested and interned German Americans (some remained interned until 1948).

Doesn’t sound like the cohesive nation Rosemary (the supposed email/letter writer) remembers, does it?

My father’s parents could neither speak nor read English. The same could be said for most of the folks in their hometown of Buck Run, PA. Of course, that didn't stop my grandfather from sending his four sons to the military.

My grandfather’s last name was changed at Ellis Island by a government employee who simply wrote what he heard. This story is a common among those who immigrated during the early 1900’s. My grandfather made no attempt to Americanize his name.

By the way, the Polish Catholic church in Pittsburgh still holds services in Polish. The parishioners cherish their ancestry.

I find it smug that folks like Rosemary think it's quaint to overspend at a restaurant where the maƮtre d' speaks French, and then thumb their noses at the Mexican America busboy struggling to learn English.

Last time I looked, the Chinatowns of New York and San Francisco are still popular tourist sites, yet no one expects English only in those stores and restaurants.

Turning to migrations: Let's not forget the Catholic and Irish migrations. In fact, let's not forget every significant migration. There has not been one such migration that was not been met with open hostility or violence. The only issue that has changed in recent times is the increased wealth transfers from government programs. Funny, to my knowledge, Bush never reduced any of these programs.

But, then, the Republicans never seem to reduce any program. Of course, since the Republicans did not support Ron Paul, they deserve what they get.

Do you want to answer the concerns addressed in Rosemary's email? Then fight for reduced government, not partisan politics. Bush's policies are leading to the collapse of our financial systems. The dollar is no longer the gold-standard currency. In fact, folks in other countries would rather have the Euro. The Euro?!? What a slap in the face.

Due to the collapse, foreign countries are buying ownership in our largest banks. By the way, the Federal Reserve Bank is run by its constituent banks. Therefore, foreigners now have influence on our financial system. Talk about a real threat to our security; Iraq is just a diversion.

The Fed is a corrupt system, yet only Ron Paul was willing to address it. Everyone else -- candidates and voters -- wants to continue to expand the money supply and increase debt. We all want something for nothing -- both parties. Not much different from the strawman created by Rosemary, is it?

Republicans complain about the Democrats, and the Democrats complain about the Republicans. Meanwhile, government grows more intrusive and expansive, not to mention expensive. Does anyone really believe that McCain intends to reduce wealth transfers? Do they think he will rein in the Federal Reserve? Do they think he will reduce the growth of government? Do they really think he will return any of the civil liberties we lost under Bush?

Yet, there he stands as the Republican candidate. If ever there was a dime's worth of difference between the parties, it only a penny's worth now -- the result of political inflation.

In the end, does anyone really think that repeating the nonsense written below will do anything to solve our problems? Rewriting the past as a means to hide from our present realities is a fool's errand.



The original email:
This is a very good letter to the editor. This woman made some good points.
For some reason, people have difficulty structuring their arguments when arguing against supporting the currently proposed immigration revisions. This lady made the argument pretty simple. NOT printed in the Orange County Paper...................

Newspapers simply won't publish letters to the editor which they either deem politically incorrect (read below) or which does not agree with the philosophy they're pushing on the public. This woman wrote a great letter to the editor that should have been published; but, with your help it Will get published via cyberspace!

From: 'David LaBonte'
My wife, Rosemary, wrote a wonderful letter to the editor of the OC Register which, of course, was not printed. So, I decided to 'print' it myself by sending it out on the Internet. Pass it along if you feel so inclined. Written in response to a series of letters to the editor in the Orange County Register:

Dear Editor:
So many letter writers have based their arguments on how this land is made up of immigrants. Ernie Lujan for one, suggests we should tear down the Statue of Liberty because the people now in question aren't being treated the same as those who passed through Ellis Island and other ports of entry.

Maybe we should turn to our history books and point out to people like Mr. Lujan why today's American is not willing to accept this new kind of immigrant any longer. Back in 1900 when there was a rush from all areas of Europe to come to the United States, people had to get off a ship and stand in a long line in New York and be documented. Some would even get down on their hands and knees and kiss the ground. They made a pledge to uphold the laws and support their new country in good and bad times. They made learning English a primary rule in their new American households and some even changed their names to blend in with their new home.

They had waved good bye to their birth place to give their children a new life and did everything in their power to help their children assimilate into one culture. Nothing was handed to them. No free lunches, no welfare, no labor laws to protect them. All they had were the skills and craftsmanship they had brought with them to trade for a future of prosperity..

Most of their children came of age when World War II broke out. My father fought along side men whose parents had come straight over from Germany, Italy, France and Japan . None of these 1st generation Americans ever gave any thought about what country their parents had come from. They were Americans fighting Hitler, Mussolini and the Emperor of Japan. They were defending the United States of America as one people.

When we liberated France, no one in those villages were looking for the French-American or the German American or the Irish American. The people of France saw only Americans. And we carried one flag that represented one country. Not one of those immigrant sons would have thought about picking up another country's flag and waving it to represent who they were. It would have been a disgrace to their parents who had sacrificed so much to be here. These immigrants truly knew what it meant to be an American. They stirred the melting pot into one red, white and blue bowl.

And here we are in 2007 with a new kind of immigrant who wants the same rights and privileges. Only they want to achieve it by playing with a different set of rules, one that includes the entitlement card and a guarantee of being faithful to their mother country. I'm sorry, that's not what being an American is all about. I believe that the immigrants who landed on Ellis Island in the early 1900's deserve better than that for all the toil, hard work and sacrifice in raising future generations to create a land that has become a beacon for those legally searching for a better life. I think they would be appalled that they are being used as an example by those waving foreign country flags.

And for that suggestion about taking down the Statue of Liberty, it happens to mean a lot to the citizens who are voting on the immigration bill. I wouldn't start talking about dismantling the United States just yet.

(signed) Rosemary LaBonte


I sincerely hope this letter gets read by millions of people all across the nation!!

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