My youngest uncle, Joe Yee, operated two Farmer’s Market grocery stores and apartments in Tucson; Aunt Hanna ran Chinese Village Restaurant and another, also in Tucson; my late mother and my dad operated China Restaurant in east Tucson. None of them, or their children, had serious brushes with the law. Or depended on government subsidies. Or pledged their loyalty and allegiance to China instead of the United States, or consider themselves anything but American.
That’s because we are Americans. We became naturalized citizens, waiting for years as legal citizens to become even eligible. We all call America home.
I don’t believe our extended family is an outlier. We represent the chain-migration rule, not the exception.
That the immigration debate has pitted legal immigrants — citizens, in many cases — against those who entered unlawfully is unsettling. That chain migration has become demonized is unforgivable; and that some continue to peddle that false narrative is unconscionable.