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My S-Hole Country

My S-Hole Country

My S-Hole Country
January 18
14:47 2018

Eva Reinoso Tejada

I come from a shithole country. Before I continue, I will refer to it as a s-hole country, so I don’t have to repeat that word throughout my column. I make that statement, based on the parameters that the president must have considered when he said what he said. He referred to countries with conditions of poverty, or political instability, high crime rates, or affected by serious natural disasters, from where a strong flow of immigrants come to the U.S., as s-hole countries. Coincidentally, all these s-hole countries happen to be inhabited by a high percentage of people of color. I am from Venezuela. He didn’t include my country in his assessment, because Venezuela has never been covered by a TPS program, which is what triggered the whole conversation.

Venezuela wasn’t always like that. When my grandparents migrated from Spain, Venezuela was their “American Dream”. They fled the Spanish postwar and the tight fist of Franco’s dictatorship for a better life, better opportunities, and in the end, the opportunity of a better financial situation. Through the years, it all materialized. They made their dreams come true, then retired back in their beloved Spain and ended their days there. Venezuela was never perfect, but it was a land of dreams for many for a long time. Immigrants from all corners or Europe came to the booming oil-rich country, packed with opportunities. Even a lot of “gringos” made it there following the oil trail. Sadly, it all changed after a communist in disguise “revolutionary” Hugo Chavez changed it all. Today, in all honesty, Venezuela is probably in worse situation than any of the countries Trump had in mind. A lot of people are dying, starving, and desperate. Others are being executed by the government, for having opposing views. The strongest are fleeing the country, and many are coming to the U.S. to find a better life (or to stay alive).

The president, along with his s-hole country comment, asked “Why don’t we get more people from Norway?” I want to take a moment and analyze the question. The first word that comes to mind is “ignorance”. Why would someone from Norway, a country with a good living condition, better health insurance, a peaceful society want to immigrate to the U.S.? No wonder why many people were trolling the whole episode by saying that they didn’t want to move to the U.S., because compared to their country, this is an s-hole country.

Immigration comes from the need and the hunger to improve one’s life. It comes from the need for all those who have families to try to provide a better future for their children. The history of this country repeats all over again and it is built on immigration. It is immigrants and our desperation for success what pushes the creative force that builds this country. It is through immigration that we get talented people, with innovative ideas, and skills, or basically with the willingness to squeeze up to the last drop of talent they have to succeed. That is what builds America.

An American icon, which is the Statue of Liberty, also known as Lady Liberty, has a poem called “New Colossus”. This poem is already part of American history, and it ends with this powerful phrase: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” This almost sounds to me like: “Give me your people from s-hole countries.” I don’t see where it says: “Give me your Norwegians, give me your Nobel Prize Winners, and give me your star athletes.” Maybe the president needs to update his prescription glasses and take a second look at what America is and means, or maybe dig a bit more on the history of the Drumpf family in Europe and the United States.

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Edición Virtual | #330 | 17 de Enero 2019

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