HENDERSON: Gone will be the 'waves of grain, fruited plain'

Rolla B. Hendrickson, Jr.

I have been called many things but I do not believe anyone has described me as a “fortune-teller” or a prognosticator for that matter. Yet is it not too difficult to observe that the nation that had 140 million people when I was a teenager has seen dramatic increases in its population during the previous 70-80 years. 

The 2020 census should provide more detail, but we might currently have as many as 330 million individuals in our nation.

In recent decades much of the increase has been due to illegal immigration to our nation. Some call such individuals “illegal aliens.” Others label them simply as “immigrants.” Whatever the label (and I prefer the term illegal immigrant), the resources of our prosperous nation are being eroded and otherwise used up.

Those who like to be referred to as “progressives” seem to believe that changes in the earth’s climate are more important to examine than the rapid influx of people who require and demand the goods and services the United States of America has to offer.

Both scenarios likely need to be further studied. Remedies to slow both need to be undertaken by qualified planners in our government structure. However, the more pressing problem in my estimation is the uncontrolled growth of human, illegal, immigration.

A dear friend of mine recently asked me the question: “When will our nation’s resources be diminished so much that legal citizens will begin to look to other parts of the world for their needs?” Perhaps she phrased the question in more succinct terms. She did comment that neither she nor I would likely live long enough for it to happen, but it would happen someday if the current rate of demand continues.

The “amber waves of grain and the fruit of our plains” that are mentioned in “America the Beautiful” have provided sustenance for our nation for many decades. Yet, are they unlimited? I believe not.

In our contemporary society, there is a growing demand that government provide more and more of the nation’s wants, as well as needs. Likely, many of those individuals who seek such things from others have little, if any, real understanding of economics or American civics.

The United States of America is and has been a generous nation to the rest of the world. However, good stewardship of all kinds of resources should not be defined by more and more “giveaway programs” whether by legal or illegal means. I suppose those who think otherwise will only see their ignorance when the supply runs dry.

Those of us who know better should do all that we can to educate and to perhaps even demand that our nation’s resources be protected and used in intelligent and generous ways. As the old saying goes, “there really is no free lunch” as someone has to pay for it.

In recent reports by some media entities, the illegal aliens kept in confinement at the southern border make claims that they do not get a shower quick enough, they do not brush their teeth twice per day and complain about other things. I wonder how many showers they took on their long journey, if they had “three hots and a cot” on their way, and how often they practiced good dental hygiene.

Many certainly demand these “free things” when they illegally enter the United States of America.

Some so-called “progressive congresswomen” who apparently escaped persecution and want in their birth nation, or consider themselves persecuted by our nation, demand the good things they have experienced for the illegal individuals who come to our nation.

They make these demands and expect the cost of such things to be borne by those who are citizens and have paid taxes for their adult lives. Such claims only make sense in a fantasy world.

Perhaps those who seek a place to live legal and illegal lives need a dose of reality, but with as much compassion as possible given the circumstances and the situation faced by our legal citizens.

Rolla B. Hendrickson Jr. is a resident of Lake Park.

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