Rick DeKnoop: The tale of two streets | TheUnion.com

Rick DeKnoop: The tale of two streets

Rick DeKnoop
Other Voices

Let’s call my story “The tale of two streets.”

Over my back fence is another street. The house behind mine has been neglected and not maintained so the roof leaks and the heat and A/C doesn’t work. On that street is a criminal element that keeps trying to get their children to join a gang and become criminals.

One day the guy behind me looks over the fence and thinks that my place sure does look better than his, so that night he and his family climb that fence, find my back door open and come in and move into my guest bedroom.

In the morning I find the “undocumented tenants” and they say they know they sneaked in but things on the other side of the fence were so bad that they seek asylum so that they don’t have to go back. They tell me that they just won’t leave. If they are sent back, they promise to climb the fence again.

Some progressive people on my street tell me to show compassion and allow them to stay. They also complain that it is unkind and barbaric to keep a family of four cooped up in a small bedroom and that I should allow them to roam freely in my house, use my kitchen, food and bathrooms. While here I should also educate their children and of course supply them with healthcare because they just wanted to better their lives and I should be happy to let them stay.

Well this story happens every day at our southern border.

People living in Mexico and Central America face great difficulty at home so they sneak over our country’s back fence, It’s easier to illegally climb that fence than to do the difficult task of fixing up the things that are wrong in their home counties.

Every year between 400,000 and 500,000 people come here with no invitation or reservations and many end up in custody and placed in enclosures and sometimes even have their families separated from them.

Whose fault is that I ask? Our progressive friends find it horrifying that they end up this way. Who’s fault is it? Mine, our country’s or who?

We are facing an invasion of people who don’t want to wait in line and come here in a structured and legal way the way my ancestors did when they came here at the turn of the last century. They came with visas from our embassy and had to come through Ellis Island in New York Harbor when they came here from Holland to apply for citizenship.

They didn’t cut the line but rather did what was necessary to make a proper entry into our country. Shouldn’t we expect the same from people who want to come here today?

I feel we owe it to our immigrant ancestors who did it the right way. Thank you.

Rick DeKnoop lives in Grass Valley.


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