Iowans: Don’t Be “Hicks”

Iowans: Don't Be

by Mark PliessFlipside Editor

In the world of modern politics, we, at times, are given certain phrases that make us cringe and sometimes others that make us just say, “wow.”

This is one of those beauties.

Rep. John Mica, R-Fla., during an interview on the House’s vote to pass a bill that forces voters to show photo-identification at the polls and allows the construction of a brand new 700-mile fence on the Mexican border, told the Associated Press last week,

“This is what the Americans want. They want safe borders, and they want safe ballots.”

Back in Iowa these ideas are plenty popular.

Jim Nussle, the Republican candidate for governor, last Tuesday said he not only supports maintaining Iowa’s English-only legislation, but he supports the “safe-ballot” legislation. Sadly, new poll information shows a majority of Iowans agrees with Nussle.

The truth is we don’t need photo-identification checks at our booths. Our ballots are safe. And the wall? Yes, it’s worthless too.

Here’s the question. If you’re an illegal immigrant, do you really want to vote?

Cheap labor, which is greatly provided from our friends from the south, is the backbone to our economy. We depend on illegal immigrants to keep prices down and profits up — and most importantly, to keep Wal-Mart shoppers happy.

A man I worked with last summer was a member of that workforce. He worked 7 a.m. -3:30 p.m. every day with me, then 5-11 p.m. at his janitorial job – just to provide for his family. He did this six days a week.

He’s the epitome of an illegal Mexican worker. Now, do you think he’s going to be finding the time to vote? Do you think the thousands like him will be trying to vote? Keeping in mind of course the immense risk they would be subjecting themselves to simply by registering.

And then there’s the wall.

I’ve spent time in Mexico and Nicaragua. The countries are beautiful, splendid places, but they’re also very poor. The average Nicaraguan lives under $2 a day. The reality for the majority of the people in the region is a desperate one.

Until you’ve seen people searching for food in a trash can or met men not able to provide for their families or learned of the massacres that have occurred thanks to governments our country supports, you won’t understand why these people want so desperately to come to the U.S.

They’re not looking for the American dream. They’re looking to survive.

When one understands these things, he or she will realize we can build a wall from California to Texas that reaches the Stratosphere, and it still will do no good.

Of course the politicians know these things, but they know most voters don’t – voters like those in Iowa – and that’s why we’ll waste the millions we could be using to bolster Latin-American economies on a wall.

The Des Moines Register agrees, saying in an editorial that our thoughts are making the state look like “a bunch of hicks.”

A true resolution to the border dilemma will involve no wall, no English-only legislation and no ballot protection. What it’s going to take is a different view on illegal immigration and Mexicans within our society.

Though we don’t like to think of it, Mexicans, Guatemalans, Hondurans, Nicaraguans, El Salvadorans, Panamanians, Colombians, Venezuelans, Ecuadorians, Brazilians, Peruvians, Chileans, Bolivians, Paraguayans, Uruguayans and Argentineans are all Americans, just like us.

We need to realize there is no real border. We’re all in the same boat and need to help each other.

Quit looking like a bunch of hicks.