Immigrant…

A couple of years ago my husband and I had our genome mapped through 23andme.com. I have to say I was surprised to find out what my genes said about me (and my ethnic makeup). While I knew that I had mostly Scots-Irish ancestors based on my grandmother’s genealogy quest in the late sixties, I didn’t know much more than that.

What I found out is that I am a mutt, a Heinz 57, if you will. My genetic makeup includes sub-Saharan African ancestry, Native American ancestry, Asian ancestry, and European ancestry including 2.6% Neanderthal. In other words, I am a human being with parts from across the globe. I don’t know how all these parts came to be. I don’t know all the pieces to my genetic puzzle; I just know that based on my genetic results, I am black, brown, red, yellow, and white.

I am a United States citizen because I was born here. It’s as simple as that…for me, that is. Yet, somewhere in the past, I had ancestors who weren’t born here, who came here as immigrants and became citizens. So, by extension, I am an immigrant, too.

The question is: based upon my definition above, how many people in the United States can claim that they are not immigrants? If one is 100% Native American, then yes, that may be the exception. Otherwise, most of us are immigrants even if we haven’t had our genome mapped or genealogy checked out.

The United States was a country founded on immigrants. Many of the immigrants came here because of religious persecution. Others came for other reasons. Some came, not of their own volition, but because they were enslaved. Whatever the reason, people came to these shores and found a new home. Some could only speak their own language when they first got here, but usually in a short amount of time, they were assimilated.

Because we are a nation of immigrants, we should be willing to take a chance on people who are just like us, that is immigrants, no matter their race, creed, religion, nationality, or sexual orientation. Except now, many people are being denied the opportunity to come to this country. Our borders are being sealed off and fear and lies are being spread by our leaders. It is a scary time for all…for those who would love to come here and can’t; for those who have family both here and there; for those who have lived here all their lives, but see discrimination for those who may be different from us. (Or not so different.)

I am saddened and depressed by the vitriolic rhetoric and executive orders that are being signed that affect so many. It’s like a bad dream, and it is hard to believe this is the United States. That it has become this reality of targeting ethnic groups, targeting nationalities, targeting religions, and targeting anyone who is different. I can’t be silent about this. Who will be next? Will it be you?

I am an immigrant. Are you?

 

#IamanImmigrant

About pedometergeek

A pharmacist by profession, a haiku poet by nature, I read and write. I have a book of haiku, Ohayo Haiku, and another somewhat alternative haiku book, Three Breaths, but write other genres. I also read...lots of novels! My favorite is, and remains, Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged but I am also a big Harry Potter fan. I truly am a pedometer geek strapping on my pedometer as soon as I awaken.
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15 Responses to Immigrant…

  1. Yep, I’m just like you, a little bit of everything, with the luck of being an American by birth.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, we are lucky, but it is the ones who haven’t got our advantage of birth, I worry about now.

    Like

  3. julespaige says:

    http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/12/09/504969049/a-message-of-tolerance-and-welcome-spreading-from-yard-to-yard

    While I know a good part of my heritage, my husband and children and grands are as you say Heinz 57. Even I am from two parts of the same country that consider themselves separate from each other by northern and southern.

    There does need to be some kind of Vetting process. It is my opinion that 911 would not have happened if the attitude had not been ‘Let’s look the other way so we don’t appear prejudice.’
    Those pilots literally got away with murder. Good people should be welcome. And perhaps we should also give more land back to the Native Peoples who actually believed that no man should own land.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Love those signs…thanks for the link, JP.
      Good people should be welcome, I agree. To put a ban on a certain sect or people is just wrong.

      Liked by 1 person

      • julespaige says:

        The same rules should apply to everyone. Our grandparents had to earn their way – and didn’t expect rules to be changed for them or have their beliefs rule the future.

        It is one thing to welcome everyone – but for the stranger to come in (into any country) and then demand changes be made to accept them and restrict everyone else is not justice either. And that applies to any Zealot group. Think of Prohibition and Blue Laws. Not everyone has the same day of rest.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. evanatiello says:

    #ImAnImmigrant thanks for this, Nan

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are welcome, Eva. Glad you read it, and hashagged it as well. To quote Arlo Guthrie, “If one person does it, it scares them….if fifty people do it, it’s a movement.” We need a movement; things have to change. ~nan

      Like

  5. JP, don’t disagree with you at all. Shalom, Deb. ~nan

    Like

  6. yes, we all immigrants. I don’t think there is anyone out there that is 100% English or Native American. Is embarrassing how some people think they can be racist towards others because they are ”white” and others are not. I always felt victimised when I was little and now that I am older, that feeling hasn’t changed.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Still, taniajbeltran, getting out into the wider world should change people’s opinions a bit. Families’ beliefs should not rule the day forever.

    Like

  8. We are all one family, one race…that of Homo sapiens, the human race. We are on a continuum of color from light to dark…a thousand shades…and we should treat each other as such. ~nan

    Like

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