I’m moving into your neighborhood.

I want to move into your neighborhood and I see a lot of empty houses. I sneak into one, get a job, put my kids in school, and keep the lawn mowed. Eventually I start to mingle with the rest of the neighbors and nobody realizes I snuck into the neighborhood. By the time everybody finds out, it doesn’t really matter, because I’m a good neighbor. We get along great.

That’s illegal immigration.

I’m coming to move into your neighborhood. There are a lot of empty houses and I only have a small family, so I’m asking if you can spare some of that extra space for us, and you say yes. I get a job, I come to the neighborhood association meetings, I keep my lawn cut, and I bring potato salad to y’all’s barbecues. I’m a good neighbor. We get along great.

That’s legal immigration.

I’m coming to move into your neighborhood. There are a lot of empty houses and I only have a small family, so I’m asking if you can spare some of that extra space for us, and you say yes. I like my new house, but I like yours better, so I poison your family and I take it. The house next to yours looks great too. And the next one. I poison the whole neighborhood and 90% of you die. I need this whole neighborhood for me and my family though, so I kill another 5% and the remaining 5% I put in a mobile home down by the creek where nobody will see you.

That’s the immigration which founded the United States.

The only difference between the illegal immigration that founded the United States and the illegal immigration those descendants are fighting so hard against is intent. White people illegally immigrated here to claim, displace, and take over. Immigrants, illegal or otherwise, are not coming over in massive numbers to displace Americans and take over the country, regardless of how many times Republican talking heads want us to believe that.  But even if they were — that’s the historical basis of this country. The justification for illegal white immigration centuries ago boils down to “We won” whether they’ll admit to it or not, and the fear is that a bunch of brown people, born inside the borders or outside, will one day take over the country and justify the oppression of white people by saying, “Well….we won.”  That fear of racial retribution informs so many policies and positions from our lack of gun control to gerrymandering.

What’s the answer? How do we fix this? Well.  We can’t.  Now that race has become the defining characteristic by which we separate groups of people, there’s no way to overcome that in a generation or two or five.  You can chip away at the foundation of racism as more and more people disregard (or do their best to disregard) race as a contributing factor toward societal worth, but it’s not going away in our lifetimes.

So in truth……the answer is to take over, and those paranoid whites aren’t completely wrong after all. Of course none of us has any interest in oppressing whites or paying them back for what their ancestors did, but the goal really is to wrest power from the legacy of white people who uphold these institutions built to subjugate everyone else. The government should represent the people, and our ruling class does not look like the people. Let the Fox News audience continue on in their paranoia yelling at each other and hanging on by their fingertips. The neighborhood belongs to us, without poisoning anybody.

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