Painting by Diane Widler Wenzel whose blog is Umbrella Painting Journal
We know it's still winter by outside cold temperatures and in my valley the darkness, fog, long nights, but those nights are little by little shortening. And the plants outside know this. I can see some of the first growths coming up from the soil, buds swelling on the end of trees and shrubs.
digital painting-- sun breaking through darkness
We are still in the dark but with the bursting forth so near, it's a good time for meditating, for thinking of possibilities, of our own growth. As the light grows, we see more shadows. It is a time where the ancients would say we may open our third eye to see the truths that the world around us does not reveal.
My dreams have been rich, not so much dreams of what will come but vivid dreams with color and events. I am writing a new book and it's been coming together in very exciting ways. I know for those who dislike romances, that won't seem a big deal. It's a big deal to me as these characters take on life and action. They grow as outside I see the buds expanding ready to burst forth.
While I am doing a lot of internal work (analysis of a recent dream is in my Rain Trueax blog), writing many hours each day, time with family in Central Oregon, planning for activities later this spring and summer (beach trip with friends and Yellowstone in July), I am also reading the papers, listening to some news and thinking about our country and the directions it is expanding.
As a woman who has always lived by the laws, I have had a hard time with what has happened here regarding immigration. When we haphazardly punished some for immigration violations while others have been rewarded, immigration has been an issue that has troubled me (and I've written on it before with the general conclusion we have laws and they should be obeyed). Basically I had felt that it can't be right for Americans to profit from cheap labor because they looked the other way on immigration for their own profit.
For years I didn't like the idea of amnesty and thought in terms of better border security (it's not all about Mexico), enforcement of the laws, work regulations that kept illegal residents from benefiting from coming without permission.
But at the same time, I recognized that at one time everybody came without permission. When my grandmother's grandparents came from Germany and bought a farm in South Dakota, I doubt they had permission. On the other side, my great grandfather came from Scotland. Who did he have to ask in the 1800s? Even the relatives that came earlier, some to what was New Amsterdam in the 1400s, there were no green cards or even Visas. They just came if they could afford the boat fare. If not they may have sold themselves into servitude for a number of years to gain passage.
So here we are today with rules and regulations that are regularly broken. In January President Obama basically announced he goes along with the Senate Eight on a proposal to strengthen borders, work regulations, loosen up on the number of green cards and work visas, a path to citizenship, but one that makes those 11 million here illegally get to the back of the line and pay back taxes.
First of all why would they do that? How many years would they then have to wait to work here legally? Let's assume they have jobs now, do they give them up to the ones who waited to do it legally? Are we giving them a pass on that until they do finally get their papers-- and if so, then some of the new law is like the one under Reagan.
My questions are why will the Senate and Obama proposals work better than what happened under Reagan? Will they just open a door to more illegal entry? Is it actually fair to undocumented workers currently here since they weren't the only ones contributing to what happened. Someone hired them whether for steady jobs or day labor. They were rewarded by Americans wanting their gardens cheaper or construction or food production enabling those who didn't look too closely to get lower prices.
Maybe it's that I am getting old, but I wonder now if we have any ability to actually control borders in a country like ours where entry comes so many ways. Is the world so changed that all nations with borders need to rethink this as one world and one people with all the various ethnicities, religions, genders, and cultures? I get it that you must protect resources except from those other countries, how many of them did someone exploit their resources already?
The talk is allowing in more people with training and skills. Less who do gardening. Is that going to be fair to Americans who did train and develop skills but find their wages depressed by the competition? Who benefits from that?
So I think the immigration problem didn't happen solely due to those who came here without papers. This country contributed to it. Can it be fixed now by new regulations, expanded numbers of green cards, more enforcement at the work place, allowing companies to expedite the green card for what has until now been an illegal employee? I have my doubts but what is going on right now is unfair.
The world is changing just as Imbolc signifies our way back to growth and more light, maybe it's the right time to make a change with immigration that will actually work if that's possible. I know one thing-- as I get older, I feel less need to control everything-- maybe it's an awareness I can't anyway.
There are many [traditions regarding Imbolc] but the main thing is light is coming-- which is reason to celebrate.
.one of my oil paintings-- Bird Woman