Last week there were at least two incidents in the United States of white Americans shooting immigrant POC after expressing a sentiment along the lines of ‘Get out of my country’.
I get the fear. I don’t empathize and I don’t condone, but I understand. Many working class Americans are simply straight-up ignorant. They haven’t interacted in a significant way with anyone who isn’t also a white, working class American. They fear change, and they fear what they don’t know.
What angers me most is this rhetoric of ‘Get out of my country’. It’s so outrageous it’s almost laughable – except not, because people are actually being shot.
So let’s get one thing straight: It’s not your country. You are American, and that guy Indian, for no reason other than your mama and his mama were in those respective countries when they went into labour. You’re not American because you’re better, smarter, or more deserving. You did not earn America. And in fact, he did.
Immigrants earn America. They plan their entire lives in a way that makes them appealing to the immigration process. They learn a new language, go to the right school, study the right program to learn the right skills, to be rewarded with a completely alien place and culture far away from their families, friends, and everything they have ever known. They have worked extremely hard to be American. America belongs to immigrants.