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Race and the response to the Central American immigrants [Letter]

Matters of race continually percolate to the top of our daily discourse. It is the unstated backdrop behind much of the attitudes surrounding the influx of illegal immigrant youth from our Central American neighbors ("World's refugee crisis comes to U.S. and Maryland," July 22). These adverse attitudes cannot logically be explained solely by economics, considering the trillions in treasure left in Afghanistan, Iraq and scores of Third World countries with little if any measurable positive outcomes.

The reality is that many in the majority population fear the potential influence of a growing brown electorate. This racialized view of recent events mirrors the increasingly open hostility toward President Barack Obama that is liberally tinged with racial animus.

The integration of 60,000 youth into a population of over 300 million is not an overwhelming task. I make no suggestion that opponents of these uninvited guests are evil or even mean spirited. I believe these individuals are acting out of a collective DNA that causes a heightened sensitivity to racial differences. In some cases that simply results in a recognition factor. In other Instances that recognition becomes actionable, as when law enforcement personnel reflexively lash out at individuals whose culture and color are incongruous with their own.

To test my assertions, imagine this influx of illegal immigrants being white youth from our northern border.

Arthur Pierce, Randallstown

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