I think it is absolutely essential that I explain who I am.
I think it is absolutely essential that I explain who I am. I also feel it is important to explain why I have embarked upon a mission to provide insight about our nation's many failures in securing the United States borders. My opinions are based on thirty years of experience with the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). Beyond my professional experience, I'd also like you to understand that who I am as a human being is a foundation for my opinions as well.
Why is immigration such a large issue? Immigration impacts many of the most important challenges confronting our nation today. It impacts national security, criminal justice, the economy, the environment, health care and education (to name a few). Anyone who believes that these issues need addressing must also address the immigration component of these issues.
I am a proud member of the Jewish faith. I am and have always been a registered Democrat. My parents were also Democrats. My dad was a plumber. He was born in Brooklyn, New York nearly 100 years ago. His parents and most of his siblings came to the United States from Russia a couple of years before he was born. His father (my grandfather) was a Cossack, which is a soldier in the Russian Army. He hated the conditions in Russia. He especially hated the way that the Tsar treated the peasants and the Jews. I was told my grandfather was all about justice.
My mother was born in Poland and legally immigrated to the United States as a teenager a few years before the Great Depression. My mother's mother (my grandmother) was not able to immigrate to the United States. My grandfather had divorced my grandmother and refused to bring her to the United States. Consequently, my mother lived by herself in a rooming house. She got her first job in an umbrella factory, a job that paid all of three dollars per week.
When the Holocaust swept through Europe, my grandmother was among the many millions of people who were slaughtered. In fact, many of my mother's relatives perished in the Holocaust. They paid the ultimate price for being Jews. I believe that the Holocaust represented not only an unbelievable example of extreme cruelty but also the ultimate manifestation of bigotry. In my world, bigotry is utterly unacceptable.
More about my background