Letter: Ideological Fallacies

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I always enjoy reading Frank Cagle’s articles in Metro Pulse, but in his latest article “Giving Up on Our Own?” [Frank Talk, Oct. 17, 2013], Cagle invokes the same ideological fallacy that clouds many American’s perception on the immigration issue.

More than any other country, America cannot link its citizenship to a ethnicity or race. (Most) Americans can link their ancestry back to an individual who came to this country for a better life and an opportunity to succeed. We are connected in this conceptual way much more than we are in race.

Cagle’s argument is that immigrants should not be educated in the U.S. and then allowed to stay to take the “good” tech jobs. If and when they earn citizenship, they become as American as anyone born in this country. In many ways, they are better—they appreciate the American Dream and are working harder than many native-born Americans to achieve it.

What if we had told Joseph Pulitzer, Albert Einstein, or Sergey Brin “You can come to our country, but you need to pick tomatoes or do landscaping—don’t take the good jobs!” These non-native born Americans contributed to making our country greater. The future class of first-generation Americans will do the same.

If we want our kids to grow up and become engineers, we need to improve our education system and instill a desire to succeed earlier in life, not shelter them from competition.

We need more good, productive, hardworking citizens in this country, no matter their nation of origin. It is what has made America what it is today, and will keep America great long into the 21st century.

Christopher Osborn

Knoxville

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