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To the Editor:

This is an open invitation to all people of good will of all political stripes.

Do you believe that the color of someone's skin, their religion, and where they are born does not determine their character, their worth, or the respect they are due?

Do you remember that unless your ancestors were native persons or people who were enslaved, then your ancestors immigrated to the United States seeking freedom, safety, and opportunity? America gave them a home. Do you believe that this country should continue to honor the pledge on the Statue of Liberty to welcome refugees and immigrants and give them a home?

If you answered yes, then I call you friend and affirm our shared values. Now, I need to hear you speak up. This is a critical moment for our country. Our leaders are deciding right now if we will honor our immigrant history and recognize the dignity and contributions of immigrants in our communities or if we will reject them.

The administration is proposing to slash legal family-based immigration and the program that provides opportunities for immigration from underrepresented areas such as Africa. This is the newest in a long year of troubling actions. There is no honest way to describe these proposals other than as xenophobic and racist. If that does not reflect who you are or what kind of country you want to call home, then call your representatives.

We cannot remain silent in the struggle for the heart and soul of our country.

Becca Tally

Carterville

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