By Patrick Osio
“By virtue of his father’s birth in Mexico where he was automatically a Mexican citizen by birth, makes US born Mitt Romney a second generation Mexican American. His actions against the Hispanic immigrant community reflect a loss of gratitude for Mexico granting the Romney family refuge from religious persecution they suffered in the U.S.” – Patrick Osio
September 14, 2012 (San Diego) -- Anyone born in the United Sates is a native-born citizen. Also, anyone who is born of American parents visiting or living in a foreign country, and is registered by those parents with the nearest U.S. consulate or Embassy, becomes a “native-born” citizen, though not born in U.S. territory. The child thus enjoys dual citizenship as a native-born in both the country of birth and the U.S.
In the late 1880s, Mitt Romney’s great-great-grandfather, Miles P. Romney, and a number of family members suffering religious persecution in the U.S. sought refuge in Mexico. Refuge was granted, and thus the Romneys settled in Mexico. Like all immigrants to any country, they suffered poverty and hardship, but eventually prospered.
In 1907, Gaskell Romney, a son of Miles, fathered George Romney, Mitt Romney’s father. What is known for sure is that Mitt’s father and grandfather were born in Mexico. What is difficult to trace is where they were registered so as to be classified native-born US citizens. Be that as it may, Mitt Romney was born in the US, so there is no question about his eligibility as a presidential candidate.
But Governor Romney cannot escape the reality that his father was born in Mexico, becoming a Mexican citizen by birthright. In turn, this makes Mitt Romney on his father’s side a second-generation U.S. citizen of Mexican descent – commonly referred to as Mexican-American.
Governor Romney accepts his father was born in Mexico, but he does not acknowledge his ethnic background and ignores the several hundred Romney family members who still live in Mexico. But it doesn’t change the facts – he, like it or not, ignore it or acknowledge it, is a member of the US Hispanic community.
Romney knows that owing to Mexico’s hospitality, his family avoided the constant religious persecution and ensuing incarcerations. Mexico, like the US, forbade polygamy but exercised tolerance and respect.
People of reason would expect that given the chance, the favor would be repaid. Would Romney treat the several million of Mexico’s poor who have over the years crossed the border illegally in search of a better life (economic refuge)? Would he at minimum champion immigration reform?
To the dismay of many, during Romney’s campaign for the nomination, he embraced states with mean-spirited draconian laws and personalities who promote and participate in raids netting any brown skinned person, be they US citizen or not, and making a mockery of Civil and Constitutional rights.
Now, as the Republican Party’s presidential candidate, Romney must adhere to the Platform endorsed by his party. It calls for the harshest treatment of undocumented immigrants so they will self-deport back to a life of poverty, and repeal higher educational opportunities for their foreign-born offspring; there will be no immigration reform, no path to citizenship. The Platform allows immigration of the highly educated, but hostile, to guest worker programs for agricultural sectors in which there is a critical need.
Governor Romney belongs to The Church of Latter Day Saints (Mormons), a noble and compassionate religion. All Americans agree that the separation of Church and State must be upheld. So must Romney, if he is elected, but religious teaching is also about morals and building character. How does one separate from that? How does he justify his stance that is contrary to his religion’s morals? How does he justify his ingratitude to the people whose country once saved his family?
There is a great need for the U.S. to elect someone who is a tough businessman, who will stop the wild and irresponsible spending and wasting of the nation’s wealth and continuing slide into Socialism. Romney is highly qualified and he could potentially turn the state of the union back on course.
But if Mexican-American Romney reaches the Oval Office without his moral compass, it will gain him and the nation little. He will be known for decades to come as the “mal agradecido” – the ungrateful one.
Patrick Osio is the Editor of HispanicVista. The opinions in this editorial reflect the views of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of East County Magazine. To submit an editorial for consideration, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.