Last night we watched Crossing Over, a movie from 2009 with Harrison Ford, Ashley Judd and others. IMDb link for more info. It’s a wonderfully done movie about immigration with stories about various families and individuals in Los Angeles trying to live as illegals, or trying to become legal, and some of the immigration officials who work in LA.
As someone living in a different country it was especially thought provoking. How easy it was for us to pull out our passports and enter Panama. How different it is for so many others entering a foreign country with hopes and dreams, or sometimes out of desperation with risk to their very lives. What is it like to live without legal status? What is it like to live with the daily threat of discovery and deportation? What would it be like to know that I could be stopped by any policeman and asked for my papers, and I would be unable to produce them?
I know immigration is a tough subject with many valid points on both sides. I don’t have any answers. I met undocumented people through my nursing work in Florida (which was when I first started learning some Spanish). When you know an individual with a face and a story it feels different. These were people who couldn’t find any work in Mexico to support their families. They risked everything to get to the US and didn’t see their families for years. Children grew up without seeing their father, and wives were single parents back home. They had taxes taken out but couldn’t file for their refunds. They worked hard and usually lived in very crowded conditions to save money so they could send more money home.
Anyway, I could rattle on but not come up with any answers or opinions on how to solve anything. This excellent movie just made me think about how very fortunate I am to be able to pull out a passport and go pretty much anywhere I wish in the world. And, I can go back to my country of origin without fear for my life and safety. There are countless people in the world who can’t say that.
I don’t mind looking at Harrison Ford for a couple hours either 😀
P.S. We have a computer hooked up to our TV and watched the movie on Netflix (streaming). We run Tunnelbear, an easy to use program which allows us to watch things that may be normally blocked in Panama, usually because of some non-agreement between the US networks and Panama.