Saturday, February 9, 2008
Today's wisdom brought to you by the letter ñ
Taken at the CCAMYN guest house for migrants in Altar, México. CCAMYN is staffed and supported by volunteers, with the blessing and prayers of its Catholic community, which prays for migrants daily. At CCAMYN, migrants preparing to make the dangerous journey across the U.S. desert borders are given information on what to expect when they cross, food, a few days shelter, and clothing. They are told about the dangers in the desert, of the coyotes, of the exploitation they might come across. Workers take information and data from migrants on human rights abuses and criminal acts. And families of migrants who have lost touch with their loved ones often turn to CCAMYN to help track their last known movements.
Translated: "If we don't think differently, nothing will change."
Business leaders in Oklahoma are calling for the repeal of the House Bill 1804, which has been called the harshest anti-illegal immigration legislation in the country. These business leaders cite negative economic impacts on the communities -- essentially employers are not able to find workers, retailers are not able to find buyers for their stuff.
I hate to agree with Randy Terrill, the author of the bill, but I believe he has something there when he says, "The moral dilemma for them is that they are defending the functional equivalent of modern-day slavery."
An economic argument is the least firm foundation on which to build opposition to this law. This is old thinking.
We need new thinking. We need to start putting value on human lives that isn't economic. Where do we start?