October 25, 2007

Several weeks ago, a 30-something man named Felix came into the church office asking for information on registering in the parish and getting involved.  Though he spoke with a very thick accent, Jane, one of the parish secretaries, and I learned a bit of his story.

He is from Columbia, South America and he has come to America to learn English.  He earned a graduate degree from a University in Columbia and worked as a manager in a pharmaceutical company for 10 years, while also volunteering his time to teach Primary school to adults who never made it there as children.  He remembered a woman in one of his classes who had told him that America’s Midwest was the best place to learn English because there are no accents and the people and really nice.

So he wants to learn English and take Master’s courses in Business at one of the local colleges.  He wants to get a job to make some money, but he couldn’t go through the process of getting a work visa (and then work) and work on his master’s degree.  So he doesn’t work.  Let me say that again – He has no work visa, so he doesn’t work.  He needs money and has offered what he has for a little money; “an informal business opportunity” of him teaching me or anybody Spanish for some cash – this isn’t a job, this is mowing the lawn.

We have met several times just to talk.  He says that conversation is the best way for him to learn English.  There is a Spanish church in town, but he refuses to go.  He doesn’t listen to Spanish radio and he doesn’t make Spanish speaking friends.  He did, however, meet a Colombian super-rockstar in Fort Worth last week – nobody else knew who she was.

Felix is my hero.  I have such admiration for the guy.

We had lunch today and were talking about different kinds of beer.  He said that in Columbia there were two families, one made the soft drinks and the other made the beer.  The beer family started making a lot more money than the soft drink family, so the soft drink family brewed their own brand of beer.  Eventually the beer family bought the beer side of the soft drink family.  Then, Miller Brewing Company bought out the beer family.  Now, Miller has a monopoly in Columbia, who’s economy is built on small businesses.  It eliminated the jobs from the beer family and just imports their beer from America.

He also told me about his trip to Kohl’s.  He recognizes some of their products, as they were made in Columbia and was outraged to find that a particular shirt was priced at $40 when a worker in Columbia was paid 25 cents per shirt made.

Families live on about $1 a day.  60% of the country is impoverished and most of the business are owned and run by 10 families.

A 2nd Generation Fix
I asked him about immigration.  He said that 9 out of 10 Colombians who come to America want to learn and get a decent job.  Mexico is a different story, as it is a work culture – why study when you can work now and make money?  He said the first thing you have to ask when looking at somebody because they are illegal is ‘what is their motivation for being here?’  Some want nothing to do with the country and send the money to Mexico, while others are looking for the opportunities that America is famous for having.  Because of the hostility Americans sometimes show toward them, illegals have tended to move into a siege mentality – living in a segregated culture that has little part in American life.  Felix observed that Latino people are far more emotional than Americans (e.g. business begins with getting to know somebody and their relationship with family and friends) – so why would they want to be part of a country that has disdain for them?

“Besides,” he said, “the second and third generations speak English and have moved out of this culture because of the schools.”

Light bulb.

1. Build a reasonably impenetrable fence on the border.
2. Give the illegals 3 months to get out if they want and make it known that they would not be allowed to leave again without being documented.
3. After 3 months, close the gate and begin documenting those who stayed in America through their use of schools and hospitals.  Every student and patient will be documented.
4. Deport all illegal prisoners.
5. Wait 20 years.

The idea is to control the influence of the Mexican culture to where anyone who stays in American cannot help but become a citizen.  The schools will then be used to integrate the children of current immigrants into the culture – to speak English and assimilate into society.

40 years in the desert, people.  40 years in the desert.


5 Responses to “”

  1. I have an idea of why Americans don’t like the illegal Latinos.  Could it be because they break laws, commit crimes, disrupt quiet neighborhoods, pollute our relatively decent society with their machismo attitude which treats women like a side of beef?  How about the “God is my homeboy” attitude of the young latinos who say they love God, then turn around and threaten to mess up anybody that violates their turf or disses them.  That’s why I don’t like the latino culture.  It is very confrontational, chauvinistic, riddled with an entitlement mentality, freeloading, segregationist, disrespectful, and promotes a mentality that they deserve everything handed to them on a silver platter because they had a crappy time in Mexico.  When I lived in Houston, I lived in a suburb which was predominantly latino.  I shopped at Fiesta because it was cheaper than Target and Kroger and they had better produce than Wal-Mart.  I was cussed at several times for saying “excuse me” in English when trying to pass in the aisle.  Some even said “Say it in Spanish, Gringo” in Spanish (I understand but I don’t speak).  Have they forgotten which country they’re in?  That is why Americans don’t like Latinos.

  2. mattsinak said

    This is a wonderful system.
    How do we make it happen?

  3. boboman42 said

    It would have to be either a agency that operates under usual government guidelines (CIA) or a government endorsed private-sector company.
    Of course, there are too many politicians in the way for anything to really happen.  Everybody is up for reelection at some point.

  4. Anonymous said

    Was the rockstar Juanes? Because Juanes is amazing and I would probably sell my liver on the black market to meet him, as well.Anyway, our public school system here is pretty poor compared to other countries.  1) We don’t teach religion in school, where as many Central and South American countries require religion to be taught.  Religion is an intricate part of people’s lives outside this country, and the only place we can express or learn about it is in private school or SOR classes or in Church.  This whole thing about separation of church and state has been interpreted wrongly and subjectively over the past 60 years, but that’s a different subject.  2) We’re too focused on standards and test scores for reading and math that we aren’t paying much attention to anything else, let alone ESL students (whom are no longer called that). 4) Students learning English are getting the shaft because of the way the system works. They are allowed 5 years (non-consecutive) in an ESL program, and if they don’t know it by then..tough crap..they’re going to take the same tests as everyone else and if they don’t get good enough test scores, they’re reprimanded for it.This is why Catholic schools are better….

  5. Then again, in Houston they have schools which only teach in Spanish.  How does this help anybody?  You can’t assimilate if nobody teaches you English. 
    The fact is, the U.S. has standards.  If you don’t meet those standards, then too bad.  If you don’t follow our laws, go home.  There are plenty of kids who learn English very easily.  It’s called immersion. 
    The problem is with flying the Mexican flag in the U.S..  They don’t want to be Americans, they want to be Mexicans in America and they shove it down our throats.  They want us to speak Spanish to help them.  Americans lose their jobs because they can’t speak Spanish to illegal immigrants. 
    It is not our obligation to take all of the world’s “poor” in order to help the 3rd world.  The way to help the 3rd world is to change it there, not here.  In the 1980s, the U.S. bought Mexico’s debt.  It didn’t help.  The elite still suck the economy dry. 
    Mexico won’t change until the Mexicans change it themselves.

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