The Secret Formula: How America Became a Leader By Being Open

July 28th, 2010 · 7 Comments

By David Molina

Note: A federal judge just blocked parts of Arizona’s SB 1070 this morning. You can read more about that here. SB 1070 was scheduled to go into effect as passed tomorrow.

Tomorrow the most anti-immigrant state law will go into effect in Arizona. While the federal government via the Department of Justice has filed a brief injunction to attempt to stop the law from going into effect, there’s no sign that Arizona will have a change of heart. Recently, Chris Rock was on The View and he was asked about Arizona and SB 1070.  Rock responded, “I feel bad for the Mexicans. I think they should just leave.. They don’t want you there. Blacks did in South Carolina.”

While there have been some reports of Latino immigrants leaving the Grand Canyon State, the majority have not. Recently, I asked some friends from Arizona if Latinos are leaving and they noted that while some families have left, many have stayed put. The reason? Economics. The economic situation is dire. Many immigrants have bought homes, are barely surviving, and simply don’t have the means to get up and go. While thousands have departed the state, tens of thousands simply cannot afford to. This reminds me of when former California GOP Governor Pete Wilson later recanted to a close friend why Latinos hated him so much, and Wilson was told, “you managed, via Proposition 187, to anger not just Latino immigrants but Latinos in general.”

A country stolen by trickery of the natives and bartered with senior Mexican military officials for 1/3 of Mexico, built and strengthened by immigrants (Mexicans, Irish, Italian, Polish, etc) has taken an isolationist view in regards to immigration. There is a belief in this country that immigrants rob from the United States. This couldn’t be further from the truth. What we need to remain a 21st century leader is to be open and transparent, much like we were in the 19th and 20th century. When our nation was more open and welcoming of immigrants, we created the economic engine that made our country the envy of the world. The US has been losing some ground in technology to countries abroad; do we, as Americans, really want to import every food we eat? Our strawberries, tomatoes, lettuce, oranges and beef? How many volunteers have raised their hands to pick the crops on American fields? Stephen Colbert was the last guy who raised his hand making the final count 4. Yes, four Americans ready to replace immigrant farm workers. This is laughable, tragic and painful all at once. The agricultural industry, greatly subsidized by American taxpayers, relies on hardworking, determined, “no BS” workers.

President Obama and the Congress must act, not before November elections, not in 60 days, but now. Not just more Larry Pages, Sergey Brins, but all immigrants. We must legalize the workforce that for so long has been in the shadows and not realized its God given potential. We must, like Fred Wilson pointed out, increase the visas for science, technology, engineering, and medicine (STEM) grads, startup visas, and H1B visas to ensure American companies have a steady stream of high caliber workers. And most of all we must not let comprehensive immigration reform be a political football like we’ve seen with Americas War Veterans with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Tags: Barack Obama · David Molina · diversity · Economics · Immigration

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Chicano future tense // Jul 28, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    I don’t think this has so much to do with a “secret formula” or of America being a “leader” because it’s so open.
    American history is full of such “secrets”-that is lies,subterfuges and false flag operations which created justifications for exterminating Native Americans,robbing Mexican territory,and starting wars all over the world from Mexico 1848,Vietnam,Iraq,Afghanistan..all the way up to Iran in 2010.
    The fact is this is not so much about “America”’s about Latinos and other people of color, all fair minded Americans who died,fought and struggled for justice.
    Justice has never been given to the people by a benign “good leader America”..people have always had to fight for these things tooth and nail..
    As to the federal judge issuing an injunction stopping execution of key provisions of SB1070.Well, SB1070 is such an illegal,unjust racist and xenophobic law that even the feds could not in any way hold their nose and justify it without bringing down world wide condemnation on their head.The decision was not issued out of any sense of “goodwill” or “nice America” was issued for political reasons as well as international public relations.The people have won round one..let’s hope they knock out SB1070 permanently.

  • 2 David Molina // Jul 29, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    Chicano Future Tense: I think you brought up several good points for discussion, and I don’t disagree one bit. Perhaps the title of the post was a bit off. What has struck me is how lawmakers have ridiculed the judge in this case. I think the 3 branches of gov’t are in place for a reason; I also agree w/ you that this law was illegal, racist, etc that no one w/ a moral conscious could let it go forward. The case of feds vs state is also interesting to analyze, something to look into for a future post, and to explore given the current climate.

  • 3 Anna // Jul 30, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Re: “taken an isolationist view in regards to immigration. ”

    We haven’t taken an isolationist view towards immigration. How many immigrants have we let in since 1965? Millions. The country can’t absorb all of Mexico, especially in such a poor economy.

    I favor immigration reform and legalizing the people who are here, but I want the federal government to regulate (close) the border. Having millions of people here without any rights endangers all of our rights. It’s only a matter of time before the Republicans get back into office, and set up a Soviet style state under the pretext of “protecting our borders.”

    Mexicans are going to have to fix Mexico. Why is that issue never raised?!

    Keep boycotting AZ and if you’re not registered to vote, please do so.

  • 4 Jesus (Hay-soos) // Jul 31, 2010 at 11:34 am


    could you list the names of corporations that are based in AZ as you did in a previous post. I just need to refresh my memory. Thanks

    Also, contrary to popular belief, Mexicans are not born with the innate urge to emigrate to the USA.
    A super-majority of my relatives have expressed no desire to live here. They would like to come & visit Disneyland, Universal Studios or some other tourist attraction but not live here. Granted there will always be the economic draw, but those wanting to live here is rather small . Most would rather like to go back and forth.

  • 5 Anna // Aug 3, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    I know that all Mexicans don’ automatically want to emigrate, but millions have been forced out of their own country, in part by NAFTA and The War
    on Drugs. The government can legalize the millions who are here, but it won’t solve the problem of illegal immigration, as more people will continue to be pushed off of their land by corporations who move to Mexico and pollute the soil and groundwater, making the areas around their factories unlivable. In addtion, Mexicans farmers are being pushed into poverty by agribusiness.

    Nobody ever addresses these issues. I am tired of hearing silly slogans like, ” They do the work that nobody else wants to do.” That just maintains the staus quo. The reality is that they have to take these low wage, back breaking jobs if they want to survive. Nobody ever discusses changing Mexico? Why?!

    Here are the companies that we should boycott:

    Petsmart, PF Chang’s, Cold Stone Creamery, Sprouts Market, Harkin Theaters, Arizona Diamondbacks, Best Western, Dial Soap, Discount Tire Company, Go Daddy, U-Haul, US Airways, Jenna Jamison.

  • 6 David Molina // Aug 6, 2010 at 7:03 am

    @Jesus: excellent point! I too have family in Mexico and they have expressed no desire to leave. @Anna: you bring a variety of excellent points to the discussion, mainly, why do we as Americans not feel comfortable of discussing the root cause of immigration, be it because of economic reasons, etc. I think its an awesome point and one in which and some of its writers should explore. Thanks again for stopping by!

  • 7 Benito // Aug 23, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    The Republicans are so funny, when the economy is good you say let’s all celebrate “Cinco de Mayo, my brothers” but when the economy is down “it’s all your fault, you damn immigrant”. When most Americans (with Latin America roots) go to the polls this November we will remember that the GOP has gone on a nationwide rant in proposing and passing several anti-immigration legislation and have continue to blame us for the flat economy or worse. We will remember who stands with us and who stands against us, so trying to stop it now is somewhat funny, but go ahead, you will not change our minds. You hate made you do it, in November; you will reap what you have sown.

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