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A tip for new Immigrants

Updated on September 23, 2015

Copyright 2010 AwBuchen Immigration Photo

American Citizen in 2010.
American Citizen in 2010.

A tip for Immigrants.

Before you get all bent out of shape, I’m an immigrant myself, I came to the USA from Canada through the legal immigration process and am now an American citizen. I’m also not prejudice although your definition may be different than mine and that’s your privilege. I’m not a bigot but I have slipped and used racially derogatory words if I've been cut off in my car or shoved in a crowded street for that I apologize. I also know I’m human and will undoubtedly sin until my dying day.

This year is both the happiest and the saddest in my entire life. But I've never had it easy in life. I grew up in a cultural mixing pot of a neighborhood in the 1960’s, made up of Germans, Italians, Irish, English, Romanians and Hungarians to name a few. It was allot like the “Little Rascals.” One thing we all had in common was our respect for Canadian culture and then our own cultures secondly.

Anyway the reason it was happy for me this year is at 50 years of age I finally became a proud citizen of the United States of America. The sad part was that I've been unemployed for over three years through no fault of my own. I have applied to jobs I am qualified for only to be rejected and we all know why? I am qualified, I have a B. A. Visual Art in Game Art and have had my resume professionally done through my College and online services, twice. There are never any posted entry level jobs in this new field and that leaves me applying for what is available. I graduated in the top 5 of my class and was added to the National Dean's List for 2006-2007. Anyhow I will get back on topic and quit bitching about my problems, let’s talk about Americas problems.

I came to this country not asking for anything just the opportunity to live here free of hassles, and with liberty and justice and a piece of the American pie. I made no special claim against the U. S. due to my own religious convictions or ethnic background I came here and observe and embrace American culture and tradition. After all this is my home now and I am one of her proud people.

This is what’s bothering me. It’s the issue with other immigrants from other countries particularly those of Middle Eastern or South American countries. It’s not the people, it’s not their color, it’s not their religious belief and it’s not their language that upsets me, it’s their arrogance.

I will use Canada as an example of an issue that happened which to this day has many Canadians upset. In Canada we have what are called Canadian Legion Halls. They are halls where war veterans can go to socialize with one another, playing billiards and having a beer with one another. Legion halls have always had a tradition of NOT wearing any head covering while in the building, out of respect for fallen Canadian Soldiers. And that tradition lived until the mid to late 80’s when east Indians and Sikh’s began immigrating to Canada in large numbers. Apparently a number of Sikh’s wished to enter a legion and were asked to remove their head gear or Turban’s in respect of the legions long standing tradition. This brought on huge terrible arguments of who is right and who is wrong?

Here’s a similar incident and retrospective from another Canadian.

My point is this, when in your new country of residence, when accepting something as coveted as citizenship take heed to the words of a famous American President John F. Kennedy who said “Ask not what your country can do for you , but ask what you can do for your country”. In coming to the USA immigrants from other cultures MUST first observe the conditions, traditions and values of their new home the USA and then observe their own traditions in places that have been designed for that purpose as long as it does NOT interfere with American tradition and reverence.

Think of it this way, if you’re of a faith that requires the turban for example or perhaps the veil for women. If Americans were to come to your country as immigrants and practice the custom’s we are familiar with, such as dressing lightly as our women sometime’s do or refusing to wear a turban on our heads in your religious buildings, would you not be offended? Why should the country I go to conform to me? It is I that must accept the custom’s of my new home first and my own customs second or in my own home if necessary.

Perhaps this very thing is why so many Americans are upset about Muslims. When it seems that Muslims coming to America do not respect our traditions, but instead wish us to openly force theirs instead it upsets people; and is against their pledge of Citizenship to make those demands. To me and to millions of other Americans this must surely seem arrogant? Do they not see how this might upset them in their countries of origin should we demand the same treatment?

There’s another old saying immigrants may want to remember when they are living in a country other than their own original countries of origin, and that is “When in Rome, do as the Romans do”.

Be honest

How do you think immigrants should act when moving to the USA?

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    • ezpikins profile image

      Andrew Buchen 6 years ago from Texas

      @ paulineleo52,

      Hi Pauline. There are several ways to become an American citizen legally. For me the process took about 10 years from start to finish.

      First off, you can apply for work in the USA and IF your particular job can't be filled by Americans fast enough such as nursing or some engineering jobs, you will be granted a work visa. From there you can ask the company to sponsor you in as a Permanent resident alien so you may work longer than your visa allows. Once a permanent resident, you must wait 5 years in order to apply for citizenship, in that time you cannot leave the USA for longer than 6 months without permission or loose your permanent residence status.

      Second method is to marry an American citizen. You would then apply directly for permanent residence status and have to remain a permanent resident for 3 years at which time you can apply for citizenship. You are also under the same restrictions as the previous permanent resident example. In both cases its it about $3,000 dollars from front to finish. Also, your spouse must agree to support you completely should you not work for 5 years. In case you decide to split up and go on welfare or something.

      Hope that helps?

    • paulineleo52 profile image

      paulineleo52 6 years ago

      how long did it take to move to the USA I from Canada and would like to move there is there alots of paperwork and bs to emigrate to the states or is easy for a Canadian to move there