From the Zocalo Public Square Website:
“Over one million people became legal immigrants last year, and another million — a record number — took the oath of citizenship. But becoming American is not merely a matter of arriving, or even of naturalizing, no matter the oaths taken, history studied, or democratic fundamentals understood. Immigrants and immigrant communities are in constant flux: as some immigrants become citizens, others return home; some maintain their native customs, languages, and rituals, others do not. New migrants arrive, renewing and refreshing memories and ways of home. With them, immigrant enclaves expand or collapse, interacting with their American surroundings.
Illegal immigrants live in shadow, unable to fully participate in American society and unwilling or unable to leave it. And Americans always demand — vaguely but resoundingly — that immigrants integrate, never quite specifying what that process means for immigrants or for Americans. As pressure mounts for Barack Obama and Congress to enact immigration reform, writers, advocates, and political experts visit Zócalo to ask what — beyond mere legal status, paperwork and oaths — is required to make immigrants feel like a part of American society. “
Friday, November 6, 2009
600 E. Grand Ave.