In 1906, my great-grandfather immigrated to the United States from Russia to escape anti-Semitic pogroms and to make a better life for his family. He worked for a year until he had saved enough money to bring his oldest adult son — my grandfather — to the U.S. Five years after that, they had saved enough to bring the remaining family here: my great-grandmother and five other children, four of whom were adults.
None of them came with a visa or other authorization from the government. In those days, all you needed to come here was the price of a steamship ticket. And that is how this country grew and thrived — one family at a time working to bring other family members here. The only chains to this migration were the chains of family and love. To bar families from bringing other family members here on the bogus grounds that immigrants cause crime (immigrants are far more law abiding than native born Americans) is nothing more than cruel racism due to the skin color of current immigrants (“On immigration, Trump has come up with an idea even worse than the wall,” Jan. 29).
Donald Trump has repeatedly shown that his immigration policies are based entirely on lies and bigotry. Those policies are antithetical to the best of what it means to be American. Such an immigration policy will destroy the soul of this nation and blight its future. Leviticus teaches us that “When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt." We ignore that admonition at our peril.
Sheldon H. Laskin, Ranchleigh