Latinos in LA Welcome Bused Immigrants With Open Arms: ‘They’re Brothers and Sisters’
It would be great if we could just embrace one another. It would be. It would also be great if the poem at the foot of the Statue of Liberty that reads, “Give me your poor, your tired, your huddled masses yearning to be free,” still rang true.
It doesn’t. Lately, Lady Liberty doesn’t seem to honor her credo to lift her lamp for everyone searching for freedom.
Yet, U.S. Latinos did so for 42 immigrants, mainly from Guatemala, Venezuela, Honduras, and China, recently bused from the Rio Grande in Texas to Los Angeles.
The immigrants’ trip was a more than 20-hour bus ride with little food and scant bathroom facilities
“Getting here was a surprise. I thought I would have been deported,” said Miguel Ángel, quoted in a recent Los Angeles Times article.
“I just got here … and already found a job, so I’m happy. I already cashed my check and sent a part to my family,” he said.
This is what happens when Latinos take care of Latinos.
“As an immigrant, I feel the pain of our community. They’re brothers and sisters that come looking for a better future, that look for a place that welcomes them,” Jorge-Mario Cabrera, director of communications for the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, told the L.A. Times.
The bus trip from hell was courtesy of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who said it was necessary because it provided “much-needed relief to Texas’ border communities.”
It’s not the first time Abbott has done this. He is proud of his P.R. scheme of busing immigrants to Democratic cities like New York City, Washington, D.C. (Vice-President Kamala Harris’s home), and Chicago.
Abbot is not the only Republican governor who has done this
And Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey did the same last year by busing over 1,800 migrants to the nation’s capital.
It’s a new twist to the scheme beloved by Republican governors — dumping busloads of migrants on progressive cities of the North as a protest (political stunt) against President Joe Biden’s immigration policy.
According to the latest Census estimates, over 45 million immigrants are in the U.S. — more than in any other country. That’s 13.6% of the total U.S. population. The largest immigrant population is Mexican.
There are many reasons why immigrants come to the U.S.
There are many reasons why immigrants come to the U.S. Some are escaping violence, persecution, or climate disasters, while others are on a journey to reunite with family members already living in the U.S.
Sadly, immigration has become a partisan issue, and immigrants are a political football between Democrats and Republicans.
“What’s happened over the past 20 years is that immigration now mirrors our red and blue camps, creating unbridgeable sides to a chasm,” professor of Jewish History at New York University Hasia Diner wrote in “Immigration: An American History.”
“Americans have simultaneously welcomed and rejected, lauded and reviled immigrants,” she wrote.
“It’s important that other people can have opportunities and stay here,” Miguel Ángel said, quoted by the L.A. Times.
“Back in our country, the situation is very precarious. Everyone knows it. People even die while coming here. Some drop dead in the desert. Others are kidnapped in Mexico, and others are mistreated by the coyotes. Many things happen until you get here,” he said.
It might have been a harsh bus ride for Miguel Ángel and the 41 other immigrants, but it was a blessing. They arrived in an enclave where Latinos embraced them as one of their own.
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