Today KnowMoreMedia (KMM), a business blog network and parent/host of ExPatFacts, revealed its new corporate homepage. The press release of the new site got a front page spot on PRWeb, a leading PR site for business news on the Web. It’s nice to be part of a knowledgeable and supportive company.
I appreciate the freedom that KMM gives me. Thus far we’ve explored a number of issues of interest to expats. I’ve also defined expats as persons away from their homeland–which excludes immigrants who have adopted their foreign home as their homeland of choice. I’ve spoken from experience and I’ve poked around for facts. I’ve solicited comments and gotten several. But I’ve said what’s on my mind, and KMM has backed me up.
I don’t expect the readers to share my views. I welcome all intelligent contributions. And KMM gives me liberty to engage in dialogue as I deem fit, to keep or edit (delete) comments, and other such command decisions. I know KMM is looking for writer/editors, and I encourage those interested to contact them.
If you want to see how I handle negative comments, read on.
The most recent comment to the site is one that other blog editors might delete, but in the spirit of open dialogue, I have to allow it to stand. It was in response to a pair of entries here that talk about Mexican laborers in the U.S. illegally as expats. I’ve consistently referred to illegal Mexican laborers as “immigrants”, in parentheses–because I have known many and have found that, given the choice, they would rather be in Mexico. The author of the comment, who prefers to remain anonymous, lumps them all into one category and paints them all as criminals, gang members, and trouble makers.
While I can’t deny that some fall into the same patterns of despair that other Americans do when they live without education or with limits on their chances for advancement, I point to the same article I quoted yesterday from the East Valley Tribune of Arizona to show what often happens to those who come and stay. It shows that foreign-born (and presumably illegal) inhabitants of Arizona earn less, have less education, and can generally hope for a lower standard of living than American-born inhabitants. And that is exactly the reason why many come–because their children will be among those American-born inhabitants who fare better.
Are they all humble peasants looking for a better life? No, but I dare say that most are. Do they find a better life? Perhaps not in their generation, but they provide hope of one by coming to America, as the statistics show. Again, I’m not condoning the illegality. I’m just saying that I understand their motivation. As to the charge that they are all misfits, I point again to the article and the statistics in it and in other articles packaged with it yesterday. I looked at the education and earning figures of the uneducated immigrants and thought it sad that they should bring such poverty into our midst. Then I left the article and hunted statistics on other groups already American-born and legal, and I found that some of them earn less, as a group, than the foreign-born workers. I invite all to see the same facts and stop labeling groups carelessly.
Meanwhile, my site is about expats, and not intending immigrants, so I have to leave that discussion behind except as it speaks of those illegal laborers who send their earnings back home and plan to return there to see how they have benefitted their families and communities.