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We're In, Let's Close The Door

By Felicia Persaudfounder of CaribWorldNews.com, CaribPR Wire and Hard Beat Communications

 

NEW YORK -  The response on the hot button issue of immigration by Trinidad and Tobago-born Jennifer Carroll, the handpicked running-mate of Florida gubernatorial hopeful Rick Scott to a newspaper reporter`s recent question, reminded me of the above mentioned phrase this week: `We`re in. Now Let`s Close the Door!`

Carroll, born in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, was brought to the U.S. by her parents and she proceeded like many migrants before her, to achieve the American dream – through hard work and determination and obviously a few well played hands as a member of the Republican Party.

Like the few minorities in the Grand Ole Party, Carroll has quickly risen to power as the few tokens usually do within the GOP. She has made history as only the first black to be elected to the Florida House and now as the only black Republican woman on a statewide ticket in Florida.

Of course that is great for her but what irks me about these types is the sudden amnesia they suffer when it comes to their own roots and other immigrants. Carroll sadly is taking as hard-lined a stance on immigration as her non-immigrant running mate. Surprised? Well I`m not.

As the Palm Beach Post interview with Ms. Carroll showed, she like many Conservative Caribbean and other migrants in the GOP and Tea Party are following the same dogma: `We`re In; Now Let`s Close the Door!`

So what do we do with the hard working undocumented migrants who farm the land in Florida, pick the fruit and clean the hotels? As far as Carroll is concerned they can all get out.  `Illegal immigration I do not support because I feel that we should not be rewarding illegal activities,` she told the Post recently.

Interestingly, asked if she supports bringing an Arizona-style immigration enforcement law to Florida, she suddenly grew hesitant, insisting: `I have not read the bill, so I cannot tell you.`

The stance was similar to Alabama congressional candidate Les Phillip, also born in Trinidad and Tobago, who shared similar sentiments on immigration; feelings that no doubt earned them applause with the White GOPers they are trying to impress while serving to further alienate the minority and immigrant voting bloc.

Why is it that immigrants, especially many from the Caribbean who become naturalized U.S. citizens are so quick to follow the example of Carroll and Phillip? Why do they somehow feel they are better than others and now must do their best to selfishly close the door? The reality is that while you may have been lucky to come to the U.S. legally, there were many who fought and died for the right for you to be here. So why do you believe you should now close the door on those who want the same opportunity as you but were not as lucky to benefit from the kind of migration that brought you here?

The fact is that many immigrants who live in the U.S. undocumented are caught up in a backlog and nightmare of bureaucratic red tape that had placed their lives on hold and landed them into the pool that the GOP looks down their noses on while turning a blind eye to the fact that many of these immigrants are the ones keeping the deep blue collar of work in this economy churning.

Everyone living in this country as moral, hardworking immigrants, despite lacking working papers or travel documents, wants the same opportunity both Carroll and Phillip had as new migrants. It is blatant hypocrisy to adopt the mantra of shutting others out while an immigrant heart continues to beat in your chest. You`ll never be truly American, despite the naturalization papers. It is about time many remembered this and from whence they came. 

 



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