Episcopal Bishop Vicky Gene Robinson published an article in The Daily Beast asking if it it time to return Lady Liberty to France.
Click here to read the full article: Is it Time to Send Lady Liberty Back to France?
In the article, published on July 20, 2014, Robinson argues the United States has the resources, but not the will, to take in the refugee children at our border. As of August 7, 2014, the article has garnered some 650 comments. Almost all of them are highly critical of the author and his views. I understand immigration is a very complicated issue, but I do not understand the intense level of hatred that is captured in the comments.
Let’s set aside the argument that we are and always have been a nation of immigrants. Let’s also set aside the argument as to how many immigrants would be the perfect number to allow into our country in any given year. My question is this: Where is the empathy of my fellow Americans? Where is the compassion?
There are families in the world who, in spite of their very best efforts, are starving. There are families, through no fault of their own, are suffering from war and violence. Is it any wonder these families seek to come to the United States in hope of something better for their children?
Wouldn’t we, ourselves, do anything and everything possible to give our own children a better life? In almost all our cases, didn’t at least one of our ancestors immigrate so that we could live here and have a better life?
It is true, we cannot accept each and every immigrant that is out there today and wants to come to America. But shouldn’t we empathize with them rather than show them such hatred and contempt? Shouldn’t we feel proud they want to come here at all?
Apparently Episcopal Priest Betty Bone Schiess, 87, wrote a similar letter to the editor a while back. I am unable to find a copy of her letter on the Internet. She reports she received more hate mail over her letter than she did during the time around her ordination, when many were outraged the church would ordain a woman.
Again, where is our sense of compassion?