Mr. Buchanan, we won’t listen to you
I’m writing in response to Mr. Buchanan’s opinion piece “Does Our Diversity Portend Disintegration.” I struggled deciding which direction to take when creating this letter. Do I point out the fear mongering, manipulative language? What about the fake statistics? Do I address the misleading logic and thinly veiled white supremacist talking points? What I’ve decided to do instead is talk about his cruel and unkind attitude.
I was born right here in town. I grew up here and when I started my family I knew where the best place for my sons to grow up is here in Escanaba. My family received such a warm welcome from our neighbors, hellos, introductions, and even gifts! My heart had never been so full. I think that is why Mr. Buchanan’s article hurt so much. It was the first time in my life I felt like I didn’t belong.
Mr. Buchanan thinks that diversity is destroying our country. That my ancestors are “invaders.” As I stood there in my dining room reading his poison my heart sank, my eyes filled with tears, and my stomach was sick. I began to doubt our community. “What will my neighbors think when they find out I’m mixed? If I tell them, I’m Mexican, will they look at me differently? Do they think like Buchanan? Will they want me out of the neighborhood? Will they still smile and wave to me?”
My fear turned into great sadness, and I wondered what I should do. That is when, my dear editor, that I decided to talk to you directly. I was nervous going into the Daily Press building. I didn’t want to make waves, but my heart was sick, and I needed reassurance. Dear editor, you did not disappoint. I was listened to with kindness and understanding and when I left the building my faith was renewed in my hometown. Escanaba is not a place full of people who hate and fear those that are different. We are a community that treasures neighborly love, and we look out for each other. I realized that I didn’t have to be afraid because I could trust that my community would have my back.
Mr. Buchanan is not from our community. Even if he has a following here because of his fame his attitude does not represent the kindness here in the U.P. Yoopers are a welcoming people that value neighborly affection. Mr. Buchanan you will not instill fear in us of our neighbors. We understand the value in diversity, and we will not alienate our minority families. There are better conservate pundits for us to listen to and I believe that your attitude has worn out its welcome.
Let us always strive to be a place where people find refuge from big city apathy and anonymity. Love thy neighbor as thy self is not just something you recite; it is what you live.