It’s no surprise that America is struggling to accept immigrants. Every day we hear on the news about how “illegal immigrants” have made their way into the country. Even when they manage to stay long enough to have children, they are booted out of the country and their children are left to pick up the pieces alone. This is a terrible injustice especially to the Mexican’s.
The reason for this blog is to educate those who feel that all those who have come from Mexico should be shipped back to Mexico. First let me tell you a little about the Mexican-American war.
The Mexican-American War (1846-1848) marked the first U.S. armed conflict chiefly fought on foreign soil. It pitted a politically divided and militarily unprepared Mexico against the expansionist-minded administration of U.S. President James K. Polk, who believed the United States had a “manifest destiny” to spread across the continent to the Pacific Ocean. A border skirmish along the Rio Grande started off the fighting and was followed by a series of U.S. victories. When the dust cleared, Mexico had lost about one-third of its territory, including nearly all of present-day California, Utah, Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico.
On April 25, 1846, Mexican cavalry attacked a group of U.S. soldiers in the disputed zone under the command of General Zachary Taylor, killing about a dozen. They then laid siege to an American fort along the Rio Grande. Taylor called in reinforcements, and–with the help of superior rifles and artillery–was able to defeat the Mexicans at the battles of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma.
Following those battles, Polk told the U.S. Congress that the “cup of forbearance has been exhausted, even before Mexico passed the boundary of the United States, invaded our territory, and shed American blood upon American soil.” Two days later, on May 13, Congress declared war, despite opposition from some northern lawmakers. No official declaration of war ever came from Mexico.
That is just a small portion of what happened during that war. The point is that the land was divided and the Mexican’s were forced to go to what is now Mexico and completely forced out of the United States. Those who feel that illegal immigrants need to go back to their “homeland” do not realize they are in their homeland. The second problem we have with immigration is a myth that Mexican’s come to the United States and depend on welfare and tax payers. This is also untrue as Mexican’s are much harder workers than the average American and the majority of the food you have (including all veggie’s and fruits) come from Mexican’s picking them. They are some of the hardest working people on the planet and they do not live on Welfare.
Many Mexican’s made America what it is today and still continue to strive to make it better. The racist profiling against Mexican’s is not only unfair but ignorant. I also must tell you that if you research your family history, you will find that all of your families immigrated from somewhere else. America has not always been where it is today and was built by the same people you have racist thoughts towards.
The following languages are being used in the United States: English, Spanish, Italian, Polish and French among many others. Yes, English is the most widely used language in the United States NOW however, it was not the first language spoken when the America’s were being created and built. English is also NOT the official language. Many people have spoken out across Social Media concerning petty things such as having to press 1 for English and even stating “You’re in America, speak English or go home” this is very easy for anyone who has no idea about the history of America or your family history. America is based on the Freedom of Speech and Freedoms that other countries don’t have and part of that Freedom is to be able to speak in any language you choose. To disrespect someone simply because they speak a language that you cannot, makes you ignorant and outright racist.
Early Migrants and Settlers: Miners, Packers and Vaqueros
Some of the earliest Mexican migrants in the Columbia River Basin were mule packers, miners, and vaqueros (cowboys). Mexican mule packers were the descendants of generations of Spanish-Mexicans who learned their trade in Mexico, the Southwest, and California and moved supplies of all types from distribution points in northern California to areas as far north as the Illinois Valley in Oregon. In the mid-1850s, Mexican packers also supplied the Second Regiment Oregon Mounted Volunteers during the Rogue River War in Oregon, and in the 1870s brought supplies to the mining camps in Idaho. Mexican miners worked the placers in the hills near Idaho City, and in the late 1870s Manuel Fontez discovered rich quartz veins in the Salmon River Mountains between the middle and south forks.
The story of Mexican Americans in the Pacific Northwest in the twentieth century is closely related to the development of the railroads and irrigated agriculture. Revolution and the resulting chaotic economic conditions in Mexico caused hundreds of thousands of Mexicans to enter the United States in the years from 1917 to the outbreak of the Great Depression in1929. The expansion of sugar beet production in Idaho “pulled” Mexican migrants to the Columbia River Basin. As demand for labor increased, recruiters for the railroad companies and agriculture fanned out to the southwestern states and border cities in northern Mexico and enlisted many Mexicans eager to find work and a better life in the United States.
In the post-World War II years, agricultural work opportunities continued to attract Mexicans and Mexican Americans to Oregon, Idaho, and Washington. In Oregon Mexicans and Mexican Americans from California and Texas worked the crops in the Rogue River, the Willamette, Hood River, and the Treasure Valleys. In central Washington Mexicans and Mexican Americans concentrated in the Yakima Valley but also worked in the Wenatchee Valley and the Pasco and Walla Walla areas. In western Washington they worked as far north as the Mt. Vernon area in the Skagit Valley.Mexicans and Mexican Americans worked in the south central and southwestern parts of Idaho, including the Treasure Valley. Depending on the location these itinerant workers thinned sugar beets, topped onions, harvested hops and green beans, and picked potatoes, apples, asparagus and cherries. As early as the mid-1940s many Mexican American migrant workers began “settling out” of the migrant stream to seek year-round employment and to establish permanent roots in the areas where they worked. As new food processing plants provided jobs and as more of their children received an education, Mexican Americans were able to establish communities.
As you can see in the above examples, many Mexican’s did extremely hard labor that American’s today would complain about doing. They still continue to work in some of the most undesirable jobs available for very little pay and yet American’s (non-Hispanic) continue to make false accusations and assumptions that Mexican’s are lazy and destroying America. You should reconsider such views the next time you go to eat something that was grown and picked on a farm.