Post details: BlogTalkers: Irish Need Not Apply...

08/12/07

Permalink 11:15:52 am, by Email , 1630 words   English (CA)
Categories: BlogTalkers

BlogTalkers: Irish Need Not Apply...

BlogTalkers!

This week's question/request...

How important are the issues of race/ethnicity towards building a stable country/government? And what are your views on immigrants & immigration laws?

I realise that in the blogsphere... there are people who believe that borders should be sealed and no one ever be allowed to walk the "good green grass" of their home and native land.

They usually refer to themselves in the positive as "patriots"... in the negative as "isolationists"... in reality, they are racists.

Oh sure, some of their best friends are "X" and they recognise that some of "X" have helped build their country... but it's "Y" they really could do without.

...after all, "Y" takes good jobs from the REAL people that live here... "Y" is where ALL crime stems from...

...and the most recent, "Y" will be where the NEW criminals will come from.

On several blogs, I've read that the next wave of Al Queda terrorists will be coming over with the throngs of evil illegal Mexican immigrants or with the evil drug-smugglers from South America... and therefore, America MUST shut down the border.

In my opinion, this is like saying there is a very good chance that a large asteroid or even meteor will most likely cause mass destruction so America must seal-off the sky with an impenetrable shield to protect from these alien bodies... but I digress.

Ever since I was a kid, I always thought and believed that ANYONE should be allowed to come to my country regardless of race, creed, spirituality, or the like... provided they adhere to a few tenants...

#1: Please adhere to the laws of the land.

#2: Please be as accepting of others as they should be of you.

#3: Please share your culture, your food, and the good things about your homeland with us... and we will share ours with you and learn about each other.

#4: Please leave your animosities back home. This is not the ancient land of your ancestors... or your enemies ancestors... and old grudges don't have a home in this new land. Leave history to history.

This would be the extent of the "rules and regulations" I would like to see in our country... no more.

Once you take the scythe to immigration for a particular "reason"... you open the door to really becoming a pure isolationist... and that's bad.

Whenever I hear the ultra-racists discuss the "purity" of ANY race, I think about my one true belief... hard and fast science with evidence and fact. Truth is, if you only ever had one "race" (or group of people) isolating themselves into a clique in society, you WILL end up with the equivalent of inbreeding... and a "race" or people WILL grow weak without additions and modifications to the genetic pool. This is not speculation, this is fact.

As for "Y" taking jobs... I must have missed all those white, Anglo-Saxons that lined up to pick lettuce... that dreamed of sweeping a factory floor... that saved every penny to buy a convenience store so they could put their kids through university...

...and lets look at those kids...

Where did THEY grow up? What is THEIR heritage?

To be honest, in my country, they are Canadian.

They have their roots... they know they are, in essence, what their parents and grandparents were... but they are still Canadian.

You could take THE MOST MILITANT ethnic person in Toronto... and they will still celebrate a Toronto Maple Leafs win, still head to the CNE, still go to The Taste of the Danforth (Greek festival), and still feel a sense of pride when Canada does something good on the world's stage.

The above is not the exception... it's the rule. Exceptions exist, but they literally make up less than 1% of the population here that I'm aware of.

The other day, on my bus ride home from work, I saw two women... both had SEVERAL young children... One was in a full burka and veil... the other was very obviously Hindu and dressed thusly. ALL their young kids were dressed pretty much like any other kid their age in Toronto... and they were travelling TOGETHER and helping each other with their children and parcels.

Those who understand such things would know that this SHOULD be an anomaly... but here, it isn't at all... they may have roots elsewhere, but these two mothers and their kids are Canadian at heart... and because of this, their children will have a greater understanding that they would have WITHOUT isolationism of each other.

I posted a while back that it would be VERY difficult to "open fire" on someone you're messaging back-and-forth on FaceBook and MySpace and mentioned how Marshall McLuhan had it right... The global village is upon us... but immigration and multiculturalism was already providing that with spades.

My country does not have the "issues" with immigration and "illegal immigration" that our neighbours to the South have... but every so often, someone or something "abuses" the immigration system... or a hostile person slips by who really doesn't want to build this new adoptive country... but they are SO rare that to simply use them as a "reason" to slap restrictions or controls on things is dumb.

My family has been in North America since the early 1600's... and I have evidence to show this... and the bulk of BOTH SIDES of my family have been in Canada since the late 1700's... and this is my home and native land... and yet, I recognise that I am from immigrant roots... I am not TRULY an aboriginal to this land... and without the settlers and colonists, North America would be a VERY different place... possibly better, possibly worse... but different... and the concept that "MY" people built this land is not something I really hold high as a reason that "I" should dictate (or those like me) who gets to be here now... unless they are TRULY criminal.

I am (mostly) French... Scottish... English... Dutch... Irish... but I am Canadian first.

I have friends who are Pakistani... Indian... Sri Lankan... African... Mexican... Spanish... but are Canadian first.

Do they have less rights than I?

My title, "Irish Need Not Apply", was a common sign in Toronto even into the fifties... this is despite the fact that Irish people DID truly build this country as newcomers moreso than many... but some folks couldn't look beyond the concept of a persons origins to see what matters most... the person themselves.

Look at one of my heroes for an example... He suffered from "racism" and "culturalism" thanks to "The Irish Troubles"... and never achieved the fame or office he deserved because of it.

...but in typical Canadian fashion, he grumbled only slightly and STILL did the best job for his adopted land and people. He helped, despite being held back.

So do we change our governmental rules on immigration based on ANYTHING other than past criminal intention? My obvious answer is no.

"I want the cultures of all lands to blow about my house, as freely as possible, but I refuse to be blown off my feet, by anyone of them"
- Mahatma Ghandi

"There are as many ways of being Canadian as there are of being French or British, and many more than there are of being American or Irish."
- Lister Sinclair


In Addenda: I live in what is still a primarily Ukrainian neighbourhood in Toronto... in fact, the Ukrainian Festival is held just outside my door every year with rides, games, art, music, and food.

The area was NOT originally Ukrainian... it was primarily English and Welsh at one time... but over the years, the Ukrainians came and settled here... and today, it's less Ukrainian than you might expect with a mass insurgence of other folks...

None-the-less, (except this year,) the festival happened... and EVERYONE came to it to enjoy the day(s) it was on.

...but here's the point of me bringing this up...

Sure, you could get sausages, perogies, and potato pancakes... but you could also get fajitas, spring rolls, and lo mein from vendors... AT THE UKRAINIAN FESTIVAL... and no one thought this was odd at all.

In fact, in many ways, what was more Canadian?

Heck, Sue and I will miss the Ukrainian fajitas this year... it was a treat we looked forward to while strolling through the vendors and musicians on that day.

Heck, we were hoping to convince someone that we REALLY needed Ukrainian roti! The best roti in Toronto is a bit away from us... and it would have been great to have real Jamaican... er, Ukrainian festival roti closer to home!

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Comments:

Comment from: Kuanyin [Visitor] Email · http://www.moonlightbecomesme.blogspot.com/
This was an absolutely incredible post, and made especially poignant by the funny video at the end of it!

The Global Village--that's what we are--and it's time people realize it! I wanted my daughter to be immersed in other cultures and without prejudice early so her first pre-school was a special school on Park Avenue in NY where all the kids were of every race, culture, color, and creed.
PermalinkPermalink 08/12/07 @ 17:28
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
Hey Kuanyin... I agree... I've tried to introduce our little ones to every culture and whatnot as possible!
PermalinkPermalink 08/12/07 @ 20:27
Comment from: ONIT [Visitor] Email · http://incoherent-ish.blogspot.com
I've raised my son to be colour-blind.. although it gets more and more difficult with the government coming up with such terms as "Racialized persons". Pfft. Nothing like separating people like giving them labels.
PermalinkPermalink 08/14/07 @ 18:16
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
ONIT... Yup. We all stopped being just people a long, long time ago.
PermalinkPermalink 08/14/07 @ 19:03
Comment from: ONIT [Visitor] Email · http://incoherent-ish.blogspot.com
I have *never* been "just people". ;)

Doesn't matter if you call it the rat race or the human race .. we're all in it 'til we cross the finish line.
PermalinkPermalink 08/14/07 @ 23:16
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
ONIT... But who's winning?
PermalinkPermalink 08/15/07 @ 07:02
Comment from: ONIT [Visitor] Email · http://incoherent-ish.blogspot.com
As with most marathons.. it's not the destination.. or when you get there - it's the journey.
PermalinkPermalink 08/15/07 @ 22:40
Comment from: Bird [Visitor] · http://thebirdsinthemeadow.com
I just found your blog and I have to say this post really speaks to me. Where I live has been in turn Irish, Caribbean, Turkish and now Polish. Mostly everyone gets along fine. A lot of people here are tri-lingual (Polish, Turkish and English) and the whole neighbourhood is run by the hard work of all these communities. They are all Londoners, it's as simple as that.
PermalinkPermalink 08/16/07 @ 03:46
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
ONIT... What is the END of the journey!?!?!?!? (Egads!) Got a wee truth for you... you know the hotel chain "Journey's End"? They couldn't use that name in Quebec, not because of language laws, but because there is already a company called "Journey's End" there... and it's a retirement home. Think about that... Hey Grandma! We've got you a new place to live! {{shiver}}

Hey Bird... Thanks and agreed! Wherever you have family, wherever you have a stake in making things better, that's home... and you are FROM there... and that SHOULD be the extent of it!
PermalinkPermalink 08/16/07 @ 07:06
Comment from: trish [Visitor] Email · http://incoherent-ish.blogspot.com
You're supposed to TELL them when you're going to put them in a home!? Dammit. I just told her she was a live-in volunteer there... think she'll figure it out?!
PermalinkPermalink 08/16/07 @ 12:32
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
ONIT... Depends. {{BIGGRINS}}
PermalinkPermalink 08/16/07 @ 19:07
Comment from: ONIT [Visitor] Email · http://incoherent-ish.blogspot.com
You're gonna tell on me, arntcha. Dammit to crumbs.
PermalinkPermalink 08/17/07 @ 09:35
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
ONIT... Well, you have you choice... either RLH 3 in an unmarked brown paper bag delivered to our front door... or a two-litre "tub" of Kawartha Dairy Gold Medal Stripe... or absolute proof of extraterrestrial intelligence visiting Earth.
PermalinkPermalink 08/17/07 @ 18:57
Comment from: stev [Visitor] Email · http://stevblogs.com
Especially liked your points that we shouldn't persecute everyone just because of the actions of a few bad apples

mmm... roti...
PermalinkPermalink 08/20/07 @ 11:43
Comment from: admin [Member] Email · http://www.doubledeckerbuses.org/
Hey stev... Thanks kindly... it's true, the mass amount of people fighting to become isolationist seem to lump EVERYONE together without thinking that the "bad apples" represent a very small portion of those they wish to persecute... they kinda work opposite of 100 guilty go free than one innocent persecuted.

If you're in Toronto... TRUST ME... Bacchus Roti... you WON'T be sorry! I'm a chicken/potato/cheddar cheese kinda guy!
PermalinkPermalink 08/20/07 @ 19:41

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