I’ve written a fair amount about immigration in the last 20 years, and especially in the last 10. But I don’t think I’ve ever crystallized something the way I propose to now.
A lot of us would be inclined to be lenient about immigration — generous, even loosey-goosey. But the ’tude drives us nuts. The attitude.
The “Sí, se puede.” The air of entitlement. The “You can’t say ‘illegal immigrant.’” The coinage of such bogus terms as “undocumented American.” The charges of bigotry. The waving of the Mexican flag. The misuse of the Statue of Liberty. The “Ha ha, I’m here, and you can’t do anything about it.” The disdain of assimilation and the melting pot. The downgrading of English as our common language. The occasional lack of gratitude and appreciation.
The ’tude, that damn sense of entitlement.
When this comes forth — which is always — people like me get a hundred miles to the right of Trump. We want to throw up a wall and impose a moratorium on immigration for a good long while.
“No fair quotin’ the Statue of Liberty,” Senator Simpson used to say. I knew what he meant. But I’m happy to quote that dear girl, Emma, all day long as soon as people drop the ’tude.
You know? I think many readers will know what I mean, even if they wouldn’t express it just the way I have.