What is the most annoying stereotype people say about the country or place where you're from?
The short answer is that anyone Mexican in a border state is here illegally. Let me explain the long answer…
My husband is Mexican-American. Although we are both of the same descent (the boats carrying our ancestors left from the same ports but mine arrived north of the US border; his, south of it) there is a very big difference in how we are treated in this neck of the desert. We have a sheriff here who stills thinks we are living in an Arizona of the early 1800s. He actually refers to his deputies as "the posse." He conducts raids in towns in the area where he thinks these so-called 'illegals' are hanging out. These are highly publicized controversial events. I have never seen people (who are legally here, if I may interject) so afraid. My husband included.
Ruben was born here. He is college educated. He served in the Navy during the first Persian Gulf war. He served to protect those that make the laws and could quite likely, if given the chance, prosecute him for the mere fact that he is Mexican. The sheriff insists that if someone is here legally than why would they be afraid? How does one that was born here prove he is here legally? I don't know anyone that walks around carrying their birth certificate or their passport. Yet this is the first thing the sheriff's deputies ask for. It angers me to no end. If you don't have this on you, or any other proof that you are an American citizen, you are fair game.
Two weeks ago there was another one of these so-called immigration raids. It was held in a town where my husband was working at a construction site (everyone there working was legal) and my husband made the decision to shut the job down for the day. He did not want to see anyone on his job site being harrassed. Now that's fear. These people should not have to be fearful of these kinds of things as Americans!
I don't understand it. The border states have created a society where illegal aliens were just 'ok' for certain jobs. It was easier to turn a blind eye to these things when work is getting done by very cheap labor. Now it's out of control. What happens now? A vicious cycle of fear. Fear that will lose jobs. Fear that a culture very different than the founding forefathers might pervade. And when one is fearful, why not spread that around a bit. Make someone else fearful. As my friend Danny says, "Now it's just our turn."
A few weeks ago we had a brush fire in our neighborhood. I would get online to seek out information about this fire. There is an area on this news site where people can post comments about the story. I was shocked but not all that surprised, to find that someone actually blamed an illegal alien for starting the fire. The fire was proven to be caused by lightening strikes that several people had witnessed. This poster then went on to say that all the illegals do is come here for plastic surgery due to birth defects, and rape our women. This person was dead serious! This is the kind of stupidity that this fear causes.
The flip side of this is that I do agree that something needs to be done about illegal immigration. The key word here being 'illegal.' There are people that come here, commit crimes, and then run back over the border only to emerge months later with a new identity. There are a myriad of other things as well that affect the economy, etc… There is no easy answer to this solution. I don't know the right way to solve this problem, but I sure as hell know the wrong way. I sometimes can't believe what is going on here. It's an embarrassment to me to live in a state where it would appear that racism has become legal. And it angers me that my husband at times, as an American, has to endure such things due to the fact that he is a person of Mexican descent. It's very difficult to justify this insanity.