I am 27 years old & came here four years ago to live the American dream. I could write a book on my life (like millions of others I'm sure) since I've come here & I truly believe it would become a best seller!!! Trying to become legal has been a nightmare.Thank God for the Irish who find humour in every tragedy!! I even hired an attorney who somehow failed to get me the H1b visa? I have spent so much money on attorney fees. I just want to live a normal life, to be a proud Irish woman in America. I do not want to hide anymore. I want my identity back. I am well educated, (graduated from University of Limerick with an honours degree),hardworking,honest & want to pay taxes. I love America but feel so bad for my family in Ireland & here in America as I am a constant worry for them. It breaks my heart. I want to be free.I am very lucky & grateful for everything that I have but I can not live like this anymore.I would not wish this on anyone. I am sick of being depressed & watching over my shoulder.I want to have normal relationship with my boyfriend. I want to do the normal simple things at my age, like joining the gym, buying my own car/house, have a drivers licence, open a bank a/c & travel, all of which we often take for granted.My biggest regret is coming to America without the greencard. I didn't think. I was 23. I am so grateful to the ILIR. Thank you for all your hard work. I am emailing everyone I can about the ILIR.Let's fight for FREEDOM!
Why not go home to Ireland ? I can't understand why you or anyone would want to live illegally in the US when you could live with a good job in Ireland, given your education. Ireland needs people now, its not like it was 15 years ago when high unemployment drove people away. I have lived in the US for 10 years, am a US citizen and I plan to return to Ireland this year. I can't wait. Living here (the US) is good, but I can't see what the fuss is all about.
COLM MChugh not trying to be a smart arse but when you go home you will see what all the fuss is about.This great celtic tigher they talk off is over 10 years old now why did you come here again
I wish you all well. I was living in England with my British boyfriend (now hubby) and it was so stressful living under the radar- not being able to work in my profession. I understand your feelings and until we enact a fair and rational immigration policy, I am afraid the situation is not going to get better. Immigration is what made this country, yet many people, themselves products of a more fluid immigration policy, wish to tighten the regulations even futher. How soon they forget where they came from.
It's amazing, the way citizens of other countries treat Americans when we go to visit, but you want to come here and stay and work illegally while sending your money back home, any you expect us to kiss your asses. HYSTERICAL. My ancestors came here LEGALLY. If you really want to come here and stay here, why not do it the way my ancestors did rather than DEMANDING a free ride with your pathetic marches and whining? huh? Answer me that, and then you might have an argument to make, otherwise, you have no valid points to debate with. Just a bunch of angry, US law-breaking, criminals (and yes, if you come here undocumented, you are a criminal by nature even if you are not a "bad" person). You should be afraid, Americans are FINALLY standing up for our rights to keep our wages up and keep the unwanted at bay. Sorry you think your country sucks so bad that you had to come here. Why is it so trendy with you and the hispanics anyways? GEEZ. Fix your own countries, and quit trying to break ours like you did your own.
I chose my blog name because it is offensive. It's the offensive name that you Irish people call Americans who had Irish parents like myself. My parents came to this country legally. My late father and his brother were both sent to Korea shortly after they arrived here. In the 1980's a ton of Irish people came here illegally. Many of us worked hard to help them get status and we as a community seemed to persevere. But what happened to those 64,000 people who got those Green Cards? Where did they go? The majority of them went back to Ireland in the 1990's. So Now another generation has emerged. I'm quite cynical about helping this generation get Legal status just so you can go back home to Ireland a few times a year until the day that you go back all together. I'm sure this doesn't apply to everybody but it has been my experience that the past generation like this one come here to make enough money and then they go home. I also have found them to be very Anti-American and to have outright hatred of Irish-Americans or the "narrowback's" as you so affectionately call us. The tension is so thick between the 2 groups in Bars in Woodlawn and McClean Ave. that you can cut it with a knife. Why do you have to be this way? It wasnt like that with myparents generation. We all got along just fine.
To narrowback: as an Irish immigrant that is returning to live in Ireland later this year, I can empathize with your father's generation. I have uncles that came here in the 30's, 40's, and fought in the Korean war and WWII. Returning was not an option for them, because Ireland at that time was basically a third world country. For my generation that came out in the 90's immigration was more of a choice. For us, the nature and experience of being an immigrant is different, and there's nothing wrong with making some money and going home. While I've been here, I've paid taxes and contributed to the economy. I've put a lot more in than I've taken out. However, my loyalty and identity will always be with Ireland. Does that make me anti-American ? I hope not, because I really like living here, but my heart and soul are in Ireland, as corny as that may sound. That may be true of your parents, and I am lucky that I have the possibility to return home. The fact is permanent immigration is a curse on the country being left behind, an indication it's in a pretty bad state and has little to offer. Thankfully Ireland has changed from your and my father's time. I'm glad there isn't as much permanent immigration from Ireland not because I'm anti-American but because I'm pro-Ireland. Who wants to see a country drained of it's people ? Maybe the tension you speak of arises from a resentment on the Irish side about feeling they have to come here, or uncertainty as to why they're here (a lot of people come over without really thinking it through, as daft as that sounds), and a resentment on the American side that Irish now come here but don't stay. The fact is we live in a global world and climate where people can move around more fluidly. Maybe it's growing pains adopting to this different style of immigration.
Anonymous I can agree with you wanting to go home. I love my home here in the United States and would not want to leave it either. Yes, I would agree with you that Ireland was a 3rd World Country even in the 70's in many rural areas. I can recall my Dad's first journey home in the 1970's and the first place we went was the cemetery. That is a day i'll never forget. The next stop was the abandoned thatched cottage with the roof fallen away that my Father called home. The sadness was overwhelming. I think your generation owes a ton to that generation. That generation helped put food on the table during some very lean years in Ireland. My Only gripe is this, in the 1980's 64,000 Irish got Green cards and most of them are now back in Ireland. I don't think its fair that this generation receive them if they are going to do the same 10 years down the road. God luck to you when you get back home. I hope you don't forget what the US helped you achieve. God Bless!
To narrowback: thanks for your good wishes, it sounds like your parents and mine have a very similar rural background. I agree that Ireland owes a lot to that generation for putting food on the table during some lean times. However, I have to say it's still puzzling to me why you consider it a gripe that Irish green card holders would choose to return to Ireland ? Getting a green card is an enormous gift, but it doesn't include an obligation to stay for the rest of your life. As a counter-example, counsider my (American) cousin, he went to live and work in Ireland for a number of years, then chose to return to live here. Was he under any obligation to remain there and work ? No, not as far as I was concerned, and I feel the same way about Irish living here. I would say look at it in a positive light, many Irish people came here, gave years of their talent in working here, and then took their experience back to Ireland. Both countries benefitted. I hope that I can bring back my valuable experiences from living and working here and put them to positive effect. Again, thanks for your wishes!
Anonymous I again wish you good luck but I do have a problem with Irish people who want Green cards just so they can go back and forth to Ireland on Vacation. Do you think these politicians give a hoot about them? Why should they! They will never vote for them if they get green cards because very few attain citizenship. My late parents left Ireland under terrible times but in later years when they had the money to go back to Ireland (all of our family is back there) they chose not to because they felt more American than Irish. Maybe you can't fathom that but thats the way they felt. I think it's disgraceful what the 1980's generation did. They got their Green cards and then ran home a few years later. So thats where I'm coming from and If you and anyone else doesn't like it then we cann collectively agree to disagree. I will not do a thing for this current generation until this point has been adressed.
To Narrowback, you obviously feel strongly about this, and we can agree to disagree. I respect your opinion, and I would like to dig a bit deeper to get a clearer picture of where you're coming from. My question is, well, two questions actually: firstly, why exactly is it disgraceful what the 1980's generation did ? And secondly, how can this point be practically addressed ? The fact is people are free to move around, and unless you institute some possibly severe restrictions, how are you going to prevent people from returning home if that's what they ultimately want ?And, to let you know where I'm coming from, I think it's great that your parents chose to remain in the US because they felt more American than Irish. I have an uncle and an aunt in the Bronx that did the same thing. I can fathom that very well. And, I also think it's equally great that many of the 80's generation "ran home" a few years later, because they felt more Irish than American. I can fathom that equally as well. In fact, in an ideal world I would like to see everyone return to Ireland, because that's where my heart is. But from what you say you have a problem with what the 80's generation did, and I'd like to invite you to go into some detail on why you have a problem with it. You did mention one thing, which I agree with completely, and that is it is a disgrace that people use a green card as a Vacation token. But, that is not practical and I dare say a minority of green card holders get away with that. So... what else ? I'm curious.
Anonymous in the 1980's I worked with the I.I.R.M. in helping the Irish who were illegal get their Green Cards.A very hard fought battle ensued. We won that battle. It has been estimated that 64,000 people got their Green Cards as a result. I'd love to see a study on where those Green Card holders are today? I wonder if many became Naturalized? You ask why I think the what the 80's generation did is digraceful? Well there was a front page headline in the Irsh Voice that stated "WE WILL NEVER GO HOME". They gave people a sense hope for a new generation of Irish people who would be spending their lives in the USA. When things got better in Ireland I would say the majority felt it was time to go home. And, OK I can understand how people want to go home. But don't expect the USA to change their laws during the times that we live in today so another group of Irish people who have no intention of staying here permenantly can live and work here until the day you back for good. Thats where I'm coming from and I don't think there is any way of changing people from doing what they want and I agree with that totally. But I will not do 1 thing for any Irish person in this new generation unless they really want to live in the USA permamnently and become American Citizens with real voting powers.
Hi Narrowback, thanks for your explanation. Your reference to your IIRM work in the 80's really helps clarify your view. The immigration issue is really complex. This won't be a popular thing to say on this message board, but I believe that it is basically criminal that a company/business gives work to an illegal immigrant instead of to an American. That is dysfunctional and needs to be fixed. (On a side-note, why is it that employers have been so absent from the illegal immigrant debate ? The ease with which it is possible to run a business is vital to the US economy, but employers have to be somehow accountable). I find it quite depressing when I read stories like the one here about the illegal Irish smuggling probe. Ireland isn't a third world country, why are people compelled to do that? Where is their dignity or sense of self-worth? I find myself feeling for illegal immigrants, being potential (and real) victims of exploitation. But I also find myself questioning if it's fair that they should be granted status having complicitly taken part in a criminal act. Some people here say that they steal jobs from Americans, and yes I agree 100% that a job given to an illegal immigrant is a stolen job. But who is the thief ? The employer looking for a cheap and fast form of labor ? Or the society eager for a fast-track to economic expansion ? It's not easy to give a straight answer. I feel the bottom line driving all this is economic; there is a percieved threat to the status of illegal immigrants so the potential source of labor for many businesses, from bars to construction, is under threat. Well maybe it's time to look to Americans to do the work.
Post a Comment