I don't think I would call myself a hardcore liberal (despite what some of you think) because I have issues with abortion past the first trimester, I don't believe in completely curbing gun rights, and I tend to be "fiscally conservative". One of the things that I have been pretty "on the fence" about is immigration, which is odd since I am in a border state and it is ALWAYS the hot topic and everyone has picked a side. My thoughts on the issues have changed recently, let me explain...
As a teacher it is illegal and unethical for me to ask students if they are legal citizens. My job is to educate. Period. I actually don't really think about my students' status. When talking about illegal immigration people often point out that I should be the most upset because II take up space, resources, etc. The reality is education gets more money based on numbers, legal or not.
Work aside, I used to be only mildly annoyed by IIs, but not enough to believe they should be rounded up and shown the door. I understood the argument that they were breaking the law, but was sympathetic to the lengths these people would go to support their families. I would get angry at our stupid Sheriff for rounding up anyone with a Mexican surname and asking for their papers and I was annoyed that I would have to go through three different employees to find someone who spoke English. I realize how essential IIs are to our economy, and that is OUR fault because we ALLOWED it to be that way. Realistically the only reason there has been little done regarding immigration is that there is little or no middle ground.
Well, it only takes a bit of a recession for my perspective to shift a bit. We can barely help ourselves, but we are still doing enough to help out IIs. Our health care system is falling apart and I am paying ridiculous fees for my kid when the waiting rooms are packed with colds, allergies, and minor ailments. I can't even think about selling my home because our II neighbors could not afford their mortgage and bailed to go back to Mexico.
I feel like a hypocrite. I feel like a racist. I feel apologetic.