Letter to the Editor
I cannot believe that “U.S. policies of entitlement allow immigrant freeloading” [April 17] was published in our school’s newspaper. As a Hispanic immigrant and a scholar at Carnegie Mellon University, I felt this article was a slap in the face to me and those like me.
The article was blatantly racist and lacked knowledge. [Author Benjamin] Hackett’s statement about Social Security, welfare, Medicaid, and Medicare as a means for immigrants to ignore individual labor was extremely snotty and obnoxious.
Hispanics are not the only people in the United States that benefit from these programs, which were set up to help all Americans. Furthermore, Hispanics pay taxes just like everyone else in this country, so we deserve the right to have access to these programs.
His claims about immigrants not being hard workers were ridiculous. My mother and I have worked extremely hard in this country just to get by. She works a meager janitorial job in a hospital. It barely provides for everything that we need and yet she does it with a smile. As for me, I came to this country as a child and have proved that I can achieve anything through hard work. My mom and I have struggled long and hard in this country, without any form of government assistance, and for Hackett to belittle our struggle is to belittle our existence.
Hackett’s emphasis on the need for Hispanic immigrants to assimilate into American culture clearly expresses how oblivious he is. The United States is not a homogeneous nation. It is composed of one of the most diverse groups of people in the world. Hackett states that European immigrants have been able to assimilate, but the presence of Italian, Russian, and other European communities is strongly felt in this country. These immigrants brought their respective cultures, languages, and practices to the United States, just as Hispanics have done and will continue to do.
Hackett fails to realize that this is an immigrant nation. Even those who made up “the original history of this country” were immigrants just looking for a better government and a better life. The American dream should not be denied to anyone, no matter how many racist and ignorant articles like this one are published.
Eva Maria Garcia