So. Yesterday, businesses were shut down all over Texas due to the immigrant boycott. Hardest hit were obviously the construction sites and restaurants. In our paper, a local man went to a taco stand for lunch and was pissed to find it closed and gave a brief interview.
"If you an illegal alien, you have no right to be here."
Do I find it hilarious that people don't want the illegal immigrants here, yet PATRONIZE THEIR BUSINESSES?? Oh, hell yes. There isn't a pearl-clutching DAR momma I know that doesn't whisper confidentially that her gardener/pool man/house painter is a gem she had (_insert husband's name here_) pick up on Ross avenue. (That is a local street in the heart of Little Mexico here in Dallas where illegal immigrants stand on the corner looking for work. Notice I used the word WORK. What's bad here?)
These aren't people soliciting for sex. Or dealing drugs. Or living of the corporate tit and not contributing. These are the hard working men and women that bust their asses to get something. They take the jobs no one wants: washing dishes. Bussing tables. Framing houses in the hot Texas heat. Laying asphalt. Cleaning lazy rich white women's houses. We (lazy rich white women) pay them in cash because it's convenient. My god, in my neighborhood, I can't get a babysitter because the teenage girls don't want to work. Is it any sort of surprise that the wives of the painters, concrete crews, etc. will come to my neighborhood as nannies during the day?
They aren't taking jobs away from Americans. They're taking the jobs Americans won't do. They aren't taking the entry-level managerial jobs at Jamba Juice. Or Alcatel. The hardest working man I ever saw in my life was Juan. He washed dishes at the restaurant I worked at just out of high school. He got there an hour early, trying to convince the prep crews to teach him how to do their job so he could move up. He stayed late polishing glasses, because he was afraid that if there were spots on the mugs, he would get fired. :( Yes, he sent a huge portion of his paychecks home to Mexico. (did you also know the estimate median weekly pay for immigrants is $300? Not a lot, folks) He had sisters and nieces and nephews that depended on him, because the Mexican government doesn't have a welfare program. Or a work program. Or standardized education. Vincente Fox is trying, but my god, that gov't is so corrupt, it's simply going to take generations to fix.
Our old neighborhood's school was almost 80% migrant workers' children. The kindergarten teachers were PhDs. The problem they faced were that the kids are here for such a short time - the parents come and go between our countries trying to avoid deportation and banishment - that they grow up illiterate in TWO languages. So kindergarten was taught in both English and Spanish. I had no problems with this, you kidding me? My children fluent in multi-languages? Sign 'em up. And I saw the tightest knit families: mothers and tias and fathers and abuelas y abuelos. All there to support the student, be involved in their life. They are good, honest, hard working people who mostly don't know our customs and laws, but are trying to survive.
And we're the land of plenty, in which I firmly believe. *waves flag* Voting is coming up, folks. There has to be a way to help and support people who want to be here, who contribute to our country, yet not put a strain on our funds, etc. Aaaaaaaanyway. *climbs off soapbox* If you aren't a Native American Indian, IMO, you have no grounds to bitch about immigration. :D *cough* My family is Choctaw, by the way.
So how many of you have struggled with a ficathon before? As in, you got deep into it, realized it WASN'T what the person asked for, and when you sat to think about what they DID ask for you came to the conclusion that it cannot be done? Erm, done well, from your particular brain, and within the confines of the rules (no parody). I'm finding that unless it's a parody (which, I've been told is shockingly close to canon characterization regardless of the situation I've put them in), I want the fic I write to FEEL like canon. To be as close to the source material's goal as possible. This is my preference, by the way.
In other words, GRUMBLE. Time to shut my yap and get busy.