Saturday, January 06, 2007

My Country

I was born and raised here in the United States. And unlike many, many people who were born and raised here, I try not to take the freedoms we have here for granted. My parents had a lot to do with this. As a child I frequently met people from other countries. Some of them were visiting here, others were immigrants. They all left an impression, which was that this country was in their eyes (and it was unanimously) far superior to the country they'd left. Even those people who just visiting.

I like to think (and hope) that having been exposed to so many different cultures as a child has made me fairly tolerant of others. But then I read an article like this, and I have to wonder if I really am tolerant. My first reaction whenever I read something like that is "if you don't like it, go the hell back where you came from!"

For the record, that's not my reaction to immigrants in general. My parents were sponsors for a family that successfully immigrated from Columbia.

I guess what really irks me, what makes my blood boil is how some (and please note I said SOME) immigrants, illegal aliens, etc. want our country to accomodate (hell kowtow) to their beliefs. At the expense of everyone else's belief.

I guess what I'd like to say to all of the people like the ones that article talks about is this. The United States has been built on a couple of really basic prinicples. Read the bill of rights... you have the right to practice your own religion. But guess what? So do I! And your religion does not take precedence over mine. You also have the right to pursue your happiness. But again, so do I.

My opinion on the Minnesota airport thing is, if your a taxi driver, your job is to take people where they want to go. If you refuse to take a fare, for any reason, then your employer should have the right to fire you. Now, any reasonable employer would not fire a valuable employee for refusing a fare that made them fear for their own safety. But refusing to take a fare because there's a seeing eye dog involved? or because someone brought home a bottle of wine from their trip overseas? To me, that's grounds for firing, and if you don't like it, go back to whatever war torn country you came from and see if you have the luxury of being so righteous, or if you end up being so caught up in survival, that your righteousness falls by the wayside.

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