by Illegally Philly…
The year was 2075 and the problem with illegals was only getting worse. Illegals taking jobs; illegals committing crimes; illegals sucking up government resources and contributing nothing to society. The year was 2075 and the country had had enough. The crackdown was on.
There was a great wall in the country. It had been built at great expense amidst fear and loathing. It had been promised that the wall would keep the barbarians out. It had not. Like so much rhetoric, it had turned out to be just empty promises.
The country had once been great. Jobs had once been so plentiful that illegals were welcomed with open arms. They kept to themselves, they worked for cheap, and on top of that they brought with them a lively culture.
Then, there was a downturn in the economy. Jobs started getting shipped overseas and the country could no longer provide for both their citizens and the illegals, who now numbered in the tens of millions. There had been talk of mass deportations, but that was both an ethical as well as a logistical impossibility.
The country passed new laws making it a crime for anyone to hire illegals. Yes, these same laws had been on the books for years, but now they were strictly enforced. Any company caught employing illegals could be shut down completely; any person hiring an illegal to do so much as yard work could be jailed for as long as one year. It was a new day, and unfortunately for the country now, it had hardened its heart.
There were political rallies and nationalists took the opportunity to not only demonize illegals, but blame them for everything from the devaluing of the country’s currency to an outbreak of food poisoning at Kentucky Fried Chicken.
But don’t get the wrong idea. While most people did agree with the government (that there had to be law and order in the country), at the same time, as fellow human beings, they were empathetic to illegals and their plight.
One such family was having dinner one night when three men—illegals all—came knocking at the back door. Unable to secure gainful employment anymore, illegals had taken to begging door to door, much like in the Great Depression.
The mother of the family made three plates for the men, and even some tea. It was against the law to feed illegals, but the mother was a kind person, and her heart sank at the sight of these men, once so proud, now broken and begging.
“You are putting us all in jeopardy,” said the father. The father was strict man, as most fathers in the country were.
“You’re being a bit dramatic, don’t you think?” said the mother.
“We could be fined,” said the father.
“Then, fine me,” said the mother. “What’s the world come to when one person can’t even give a little food to another?”
The father did not answer. While someone who believed in the rule of law, it wasn’t as though he didn’t have a heart.
“Mother?” said the son. The son was a ten-year-old boy.
“How come the men smell so bad?”
“It’s not their fault,” said the mother. “They don’t have a home with a shower and a bath like we do.”
“How come?” said the son.
“Because they are a long way from their homes,” said the mother.
“Do they have a shower and a bath back at their homes?” said the son.
“Of course they do,” said the mother.
“Mother?” said the son.
“How did the men get here?”
“Well,” said the mother, “some of them walked, while others of them swam.”
“Is that why they call them wetbacks?” said the son.
“I suppose it is,” said the mother, “but we don’t use that term in this house. It’s not nice.”
“Sorry,” said the son.
Wetbacks, while an accurate description, was at the same time derogatory. Besides, everyone knew they didn’t actually do the backstroke.
The men knocked on the door when they were finished. They thanked the mother, who then wrapped up some biscuits for them to take. They thanked her again. Illegals, despite their circumstances, were still a grateful people, and still polite.
The mother then sat back down to dinner. She had made some very special dishes tonight: sea cucumbers, chow fun, and the father’s favorite, phoenix claws. Luckily for this family, things were still good and the father still had his job at the factory. In fact, he had just gotten a raise. There but for the grace of the Supreme Leader.
It was just another Tuesday night in the year 2075 at the Wang family household in the posh suburb of Hongqiao in Shanghai, China. The father finished his supper and got ready for his favorite TV program, Happy Camp, on-air since 1997. The son stood up from the table to take his plate to the kitchen.
“Where are you gong?” said the mother to her son. “Finish your plate. You know there are starving children in America.”
About the Author
Philip Loyd loves fat chicks and cheap beer, though not necessarily in that order. His first novel, You Lucky Bastard, is represented by New York Literary Agent Jan Kardys. Loyd lives in Dumbass, Texas. Find out more about Loyd at http://PhilipLoyd.com
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