Letter: Join Mount Mercy for immigration series

Joe Sheller

The “we’re sorry” subtext of Todd Dorman’s column (“Getting it wrong on immigration since 1895,” Sept. 11) might be a little late. The slurs against Italians were published in the local newspaper in 1895. But I think Dorman was right that we’ve been “getting it wrong” for a long time, and I was glad to read his thoughts.

Getting a handle on a big issue like this requires more than emotional reaction. Immigration is a big topic that deserves a thoughtful conversation, which is one reason the Mount Mercy University faculty chose that issue as the topic for our Fall Faculty Series this year. A series of free, public events entitled “Building Walls, Building Bridges: The U.S. as an Immigrant Nation” began Sept. 7 and continues until Nov. 17.

I invite Dorman, indeed anybody reading this, to attend any or all of our events. You can find a list of them on Mount Mercy’s website at www.mtmercy.edu/immigration.

In particular, as a professor at MMU and as coordinator of our series, I would love to hear from local immigrants who are willing to share their stories. The series includes a community forum Oct. 15 called “Our Immigration Stories: Coming to Cedar Rapids & Mount Mercy.” I hope to have a diverse group of people come together and share their immigration experiences.

Actually hearing from immigrants in person-that, I hope, is one to avoid getting it wrong.

Joe Sheller

Cedar Rapids

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