Open the Sunset Gates

“So the story of man runs in a dreary circle, because he is not yet master of the earth that holds him.”
Will Durant
Twelve thousand years ago, tribes of nomads came here over a land mass now covered by the Bering Sea. They found a land, ripe for adventure, rich in resources; slowly they spread out and developed tribes who shared the land. Yes there was violence between the tribes, sadly human nature lends to fear when ones safety feels at jeopardy. Greed also played a part, it is a powerful thing, and it has pervaded the human experience from the very first pang of hunger. Despite the evils of greed, the people who came to this land first believed in the tribe. No one man owned the land. Instead they revered the land and worked together as a tribe to forge a life. Many years later, Europeans came here and began to assimilate their patriarchal land ownership into their culture; soon the tribes were under assault by disease, slavery, and forced migration. Sadly the tribes were divided, they fought amongst themselves, some sided with the British, others with the French, still others with those fighting for independence from religious tyranny in their home countries. Was this division their ultimate ruin? Had they joined together, and presented a united front, when faced with immigrants who would not allow their culture to thrive, would this country be repeating history hundreds of years later? We will never know. The parallels between the story of these people,and what we face today stops here. We are not under attack by a group of people trying to force their culture on us. However, this country is under attack. It is slowly being eaten away by fear of an enemy we have painted into our psyches. We have convinced ourselves that these refugees, fleeing their countries, risking life and limb aboard overcrowded boats are the enemy? These students trying to educate themselves, these families trying to find a safe place to raise their children. They are not the proverbial boogie man. The people who forced them out of their homes with bombs and bullets, robbed them of a decent education, and way to earn money safely, they are the enemy, they should be feared. The policies put into place before this administration were keeping us safe. Since 9/11, the US has admitted 784,00 refugees, of those refugees, only three have been proven to have ties to terrorism-that’s .00038 percent. If your argument is that they are a drain on the economy, that is a fallacy. Immigration has proven to have a positive affect on the economy, technical innovation, and local state and federal budgets. Are there exceptions to this rule? Sure there are, but as a whole, immigrants are not the drain on the economy certain politicians and law makers claim them to be. I know there are people who will disagree with me, and for those of you who do, I ask you to open your mind and your hearts. Open a book, really research this issue. Our families are in more danger from within our own culture than we are from those born thousands of miles away. We are in even more danger because we are vulnerable with division. We are only as strong as our weakest bond; those bonds are completely gone in some cases. Why do we feel this need to push back at each other? If we keep this up, we will come under attack. We can learn something from the Native Americans of yesteryear. No I am not saying that they should have formed a united front and never have let us settle here. They should have united in strength, and figured out a way to peacefully share this great country so many people call home. More importantly, we can also learn from our forefathers who drove the natives out of their settlements and endangered their populations. Avarice is not rewarded with bounty, it is instead defined by ill gotten gains, and the results are catastrophic. Does no one else see the ironic historical cluster frack we keep recreating? There are a group of desperate Native Americans up in Standing Rock, fighting for their lives against a greed as old as time. When are we going to stop this cycle? This race for the almighty dollar. I for one have more than I need. Do I have debt? Yes. Do I wish I had more money? Hell yes! But do I have enough? Yes I do. I have a bed and a roof and a cupboard full of food. I live in a country, a great country that allows me the freedom to write this, a country founded by people whose basic tenet was trying to make a more just society. A country whose brightest beacon stands on our sea washed sunset gate, lifting her lamp beside the golden door; greeting the tired, the sick, the poor, the huddled masses yearning to breathe free. I have more than enough, because with it comes peace of mind that I haven’t turned away someone whose needs are greater than mine…

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