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PLATFORM : Our Chosen Land

<i> RAJEN S. ANAND, a native of India and a professor at Cal State Long Beach, wishes that his fellow Americans were more understanding of immigrants. </i>

None of us had a chance to pick the place of our birth, but all people yearn to live in a country that accords us liberty and justice. For more than 200 years, America has allowed the immigration of people from all over Europe. It was not until the mid-1960s that people from Asia and Latin America were given the same privilege. Now, people who were born here seem to think there are too many of these people of color roaming about the streets, working hard to realize the American dream.

Many of these nativists would like us to believe that they are not against the people who are coming here legally; they just want to stop the illegal entry of foreigners. Although one agrees that something must be done to control our borders, the rise in anti-immigrant sentiments is largely due to xenophobic and racist attitudes.

People are coming to this country because greedy employers want them to work here at very low wages, which are still higher than what they make in their native lands. The way to curtail illegal immigration is to punish these employers and not blame all immigrants who are hard-working and law-abiding residents.

America must also help its neighbors to improve their standard of living so that there will be no need for their people to come here. After all, not too many from Japan or Germany want to migrate here.

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