Letter: GOP opposition to immigration reform out of the mainstream

April 19, 2013 

The March 30 issue of the Herald noted the 32nd anniversary of the wounding of President Ronald Reagan, his press secretary James Brady, Secret Service Agent Timothy McCarthy and Police Officer Thomas Delahanty.

Read the names again: Reagan, Brady, McCarthy, Delahanty. All clearly descendants of immigrants and all serving in splendid fashion. A great day for the Irish.

The Irish in this country were the most despised immigrants imaginable 150 years ago. They were deemed ignorant, criminal, filthy, lazy and Catholic, fit only to provide the brute labor to build the railroads. They also talked with a funny accent.

Now look at them.

In the same issue of this newspaper, the second ranking Republican member of the House of Representatives labeled Hispanic workers in this country with a particularly nasty ethnic slur. All of us descend from immigrants. Don't they get that?

My former party should try to learn from history and hark back to true conservative principles if it wants to avoid permanent political minority status. The party needs to get in line with the nation's mainstream. As a start, racism, religious exclusion and general name calling must go.

WM. C. WOLKENHAUER, West Richland

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