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Weekly Immigration Wire: It’s a Multicultural World, After All

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Note: This is a weekly feature by Nezua, TMC MediaWire Blogger

In the 1970s and 1980s, it was common to hear the phrase “melting pot.” Many people said our nation’s greatest strength could be found in its multitude of cultures, languages and histories. This sentiment has been lost, as right-wing pundits and politicians increasingly espouse a dread of anything different and a fear of the Other.

This retrogressive, inflexible mindset reduces complex arguments to one thing: Us vs. Them. But the world never has been that way, and approaching it as such could be disastrous. Everything is connected: Our food systems, economies, and cultures. Large corporations no longer belong to any one nation, but are global in scope. In an increasingly connected world, our immigration policy is impacts the health and well-being of many peoples and economies.

As covered in last week’s Wire, the U.S. and Cuba are resuming immigration talks that stalled in 2003. But, as AlterNet made clear, things aren’t too promising. Discussions will be constricted to immigration issues alone, according to at least one international policy expert. Wayne Smith, a Cuba expert at the Center for International Policy in Washington, says that holding these talks without broadening them to related issues is dishonest and should cease “until the Cuban people are able to exercise their fundamental human rights and civil liberties, and until the conditions in U.S. law are fully met.”