Say it Loud: Illegal and Proud

Dear Mexican, I'm an illegal alien. Got here on a tourist visa and stayed for a job. My gabacho employer knows about it and doesn't give a crap. I don't apologize about it, as ever since I can remember, the U.S.A. has meddled in other countries' business like it owns the world. That, at least in my mind, gives me the right to be here and do a decent, reasonable man's labor with muchos huevos, labor that nobody else will do. Why won't gabachos? A myriad of reasons, from snobbism to plain old laziness to greed, none of them to be discussed here. I don't get in trouble, I work my culo off, and get good money for it. Now to my point: I don't give a caca about amnesty or, as they like to call it these days, "a pathway to legal citizenship." With the current status quo, I get to be here and have a good job without having to quit being what I have always been, cherishing what I have always cherished, or acting as I always have: as a Mexican. I'm the same exact person I have been, only a few hundred miles north and with better life chances. Under the current status quo, my employer gets great workmanship for a bargain price. Not saying it's right (or wrong), but it works well for me. And again, I'm able to work without giving my previous life and beliefs up. Aside from the occasional toothless bigot with historical amnesia, my life here as a Mexican is pretty stable. I even have good gabacho friends. My question to you is this: What would you calculate to be the percentage of illegal Mexicans in the United States who actually want the whole enchilada of American goodness, with all its obligations, rights, and privileges nowadays, when those privileges seem to be reduced to taking it in the ass from the American government in the name of some shady interest God-knows-where?Some Chihuahuan

Dear Wab, Heavy lies the sombrero, amigo. I'm glad you're enjoying life as an illegal, but few of your fellow undocumented do—what else explains the 2006 amnesty marches, the fear of escalating migra raids, and the healthy market for fraudulent documents establishing some type of legal residency? Your question does brush on an interesting related phenomenon—the legal Mexicans who could become American citizens but don't. A March 2007 Pew Hispanic Center report revealed that only 35 percent of eligible Mexicans had naturalized their status in 2005, an improvement from 20 percent in 1995; compare that with the 77, 71, and 69 percent rates for legal immigrants from the Middle East, Asia, and Europe/Canada for 2005. Researcher Jeffrey S. Passel wrote that wabs notched the abysmally low rate because "so many have low education levels, high poverty, and other characteristics that are associated with low citizenship levels." Wait a minute: I always hear anti-immigrant pendejos claim that LEGAL immigrants are grateful Americans, while ILLEGAL immigrants are unworthy of citizenship. Yet the Mexican example shows that it's the illegals who are agitating to improve their citizenship status, while the legals learn the American way and become complacent in their station. Know Nothings: care to explain the difference?

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