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Some observations from Peggy in Altamonte Springs, Florida

My neighbor across the street is now in the last stages of dying from cancer. When she went to the hospital initially, I drove her in my own vehicle. I sat with her and helped her fill out her papers. I waited while she was asked a myriad of questions by a triage nurse whose accent was so thick that I had to actually repeat the questions so that my neighbor could answer them. Then, to top it all off, this 82-year-old woman, suffering from what we would later learn was inoperable lung cancer, had to wait in the ER from 10:00 a.m. until midnight to be transported to a hospital room.

Upon release from the hospital, my neighbor was taken to an assisted living facility. She had been in this same facility for post-surgical rehab no more than three years ago, and found it to be very satisfactory. Not this time. The bulk of the staff was foreign, the food had deteriorated, as had the care, and my neighbor said that she would NEVER go back to that facility. Now, let's tackle simple mundane activities like shopping. Whenever you go into a store in FL, whether it be the grocery store, a department store in the mall, a discount store like Target or K-Mart, be prepared for culture shock, that is, if you hail from a state which has not yet been invaded. As my 74-year-old father put it, "if I hear one more person jabbering in Spanish, I am going to lose it." It is truly as though you were in a foreign country, and YOU are the foreigner.

A friend of mine who used to live in a small town near Naples, Florida, told me two stories of how the Haitian population had brought their own special brand of "diversity" to her town. Once she was in a slaughter house choosing some steaks for the restaurant which she managed. While standing in front of the counter, she saw what she thought to be a large puddle of water. When the butcher returned, she brought it to his attention and was told that that "puddle" was actually urine which had been deposited there by a Haitian woman who needed to relieve herself, and just hiked up her dress and did so.

This same friend, being an animal lover, once reported a dog that she saw chained up outside, with no shade or water, in the brutal Florida heat. She called the proper authorities and made them aware of the dog's plight. When she no longer saw the dog, she called the same authorities who informed her that by the time they had gotten there, it was too late and the dog was already gone. When my friend inquired as to exactly what was meant by the term "gone", they told her that the dog had been fattened up and was already eaten by its Haitian "owners."

These are just a few examples of how immigration has changed the America that I knew and grew up in. This issue has affected EVERY facet of our lives, from healthcare, to quality of daily life (traffic jams, overcrowded schools, violent crime, etc.) There has never been an issue, in my humble opinion, that is more IMPORTANT and more URGENT than immigration reform. And for those of you who are lucky enough to remain relatively untouched by this issue, I urge you to read the book, INVASION, by Michelle Malkin. I am in the process of reading it now, and it is very well-written, painstakingly researched, and stands as a sober warning of how important this issue is.

I urge everyone to keep abreast of how your elected officials, from your mayor on up the ladder, feel about this issue. Keep this issue at the forefront. Work it into daily conversations with your collegues, with your friends, etc. And for heaven's sake, please get involved. Fax or email your elected officials. Let them know that we are NOT going to take this INVASION lying down.