By Robert E. Macdonald
Mayor of Lewiston
Every once in a while, a movie may come out that you’re dying to see. You wait with great anticipation for the movie’s premiere date to arrive.
When the release date finally comes, you and your friends make plans to go to the local theater and enjoy the movie. Weeks of continuous advertisement at the local theater, on TV and the newspaper has continued to whet your appetite to view the film.
You and your friends go to the theater, park your car and get in line to purchase your tickets. Sales are brisk. Just before getting to the window, from out of nowhere comes a group of people who are allowed by management to cut into line and purchase the remaining tickets, shutting you and your friends out.
This is similar to what is happening today along our border and in our country.
This begs an answer from liberal politicians and snowflakes: Is this fair? (say this with a whine). Apparently it is, if you are an asylum seeker.
Non-citizens coming into the United States fall into four categories: immigrants, refugees, economic migrants and asylum seekers. At present, those on the left have succeeded in homogenizing these groups into one blend: immigrants. This leads to a false characterization of many of our non-citizen guests. In the following paragraphs, I will try to simplify definitions of the various groups so that even I can understand them.
First up are immigrants. These are people who leave their country of origin to permanently settle in another country. They are vigorously vetted prior to being allowed into the country.
In order to immigrate, they must show that they have the means to independently support themselves. Usually, this is accomplished by a job.
They are not allowed to collect any government assistance. At some point, they eventually become productive citizens.
Next we have refugees. These are people who have been forced to leave their country of origin to escape war, persecution or natural disaster. Many flee with just the clothes on their backs. They seek safety in bordering countries in order to enter the hell of refugee camps.
Many spend years in these camps; they are continuously vetted; and at some point are settled in one of the many countries throughout the world. In Maine, they receive federal, state and local assistance, which is needed in order for them to effectively assimilate into our culture.
Next are the economic migrants.These are people who go from country to country looking for work. If there is no work, they move on to another country.
Then we have asylum seekers. Most arrive in our country carrying visas. These visas give the holder the right to stay for a limited time in the United States. This may be to attend college, visit relatives or just plain tourism. When the time runs out on the visa, they are supposed to return to their country of origin.
However, many stay and apply for asylum, stating they will be harmed if they go home. It takes six months to two years in order to vet these people. Meanwhile in Maine, they become the guests of Maine and local property taxpayers.
This week is a Holy Week for both Christians and Jews. Our Jewish neighbors celebrate Passover, while Christians celebrate The Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Every year the parishioners of East Auburn Baptist Church put on a play known as “The Event.” It briefly chronicles Christ’s days on Earth. The play is exceptionally well done and puts those who see it into a state of the true meaning of the Resurrection. I think I can speak for all who attended this play: thank you.
Happy Easter and Happy Passover.