America Renewed by Immigrants

One of my favorite sites in New York is the Lower East side Tenement Museum, which tells the story of waves of immigration from Europe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The documentary shown in the visitor center makes the case that it’s the best, the most ambitious, the strongest who come to our shores seeking refuge. Each wave of immigrants renewed the part of the country where they ultimately settled. Accepting and allowing that transformation is what has set us, and our economy, apart from aging countries like Japan.

The immigrant wave continues, but the new people are more apt to be Muslim and brown or black, rather than white. This enrages Trump, and his Make America White Again supporters.

This Guardian piece tells the story of Muslims in Hamtramck, Michigan, at the time of Ramadan. This thriving, vibrant community is what Trump et al are trying to erase.

At just two square miles, surrounded by the city of Detroit, Hamtramck was once a hub for Polish migrants drawn to the city by manufacturing jobs at the Dodge assembly plant that opened in the 1914. The factory’s closure in 1980 led to a relative exodus of Eastern Europeans who once made up around 75% of the city’s population of over 20,000 residents. An influx of Yemeni and Bangladeshi migrants now make up close to a majority of the population.”

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