Re the commentary concerning the Grovetown Department of Public Safety:
I am a retired Air Force master sergeant. My many tours of duty have allowed my family and I to visit other countries. We have had the opportunity to walk, talk and eat with the local nationals. Most still believe the United States is a land of milk and honey.
The cultures of these various countries are quite different from here in the USA and Grovetown. Cultures are like an iceberg. An iceberg it has a visible section above the waterline and, a much larger, invisible section that lies below the waterline. Culture has some aspects that are observable and others can only be suspected. Like that iceberg, that part of culture that is visible, observable behavior, is only a small part of a much bigger whole.
To understand where behavior comes from, to understand why people behave the way they do, means learning about values and beliefs.
Why do these immigrants come to the United States and, in particular, Grovetown? That answer is quite simple! South of the border, the average worker earns 45 cents an hour. Georgia has a minimum rate of $5.15 an hour. That is 12 times the money that can be earned in Mexico. Immigrants will take most low-paying jobs because no one else will do so. The work has to be done, but quite a few of todays young people have little to no work ethic and feel that hard work is beneath them.
I must applaud Chief Al Robinson and his department for their efforts to educate the immigrants. There are great differences between the cultures of the United States vs. those of these immigrants. By educating them to our culture, rules and regulations of our society they will learn you cannot drive without a valid drivers license and automobile insurance. That in America you cannot walk down the middle of the road and urinate on a fire plug or the side of a building as they could in their home country, nor can you accost a female who just happens by chance to be walking by a bunch of intoxicated gentlemen as they celebrate their first payday in the land of milk and honey. Public drunkenness is not acceptable either. Furthermore they will learn that you cannot beat your significant other during a disagreement. Teaching these immigrants would provide the concept of values, gestures, individual personal space, and notions of modesty that will benefit all the residents of Grovetown and the CSRA.
When we go across the ocean to a foreign country or to the north and south of Americas borders we must learn their language and culture and, in particular, the international road signs. How long have these immigrants been in the United States? Probably only long enough to learn our money system and how to make purchases to live on and mail extra money back to their families in their home country. Our school systems try to teach a foreign language and the school board votes it down. How else can these immigrants learn to read and write English, and our culture? Only through efforts that the Grovetown DPS is attempting.
I would like to leave you with this quote attributed to Theodore Roosevelt: To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society. Why not help Chief Robinson establish a citizen/culture orientation education program rather than criticize him? Give him and his department a break. Pitch in and help them.
David G. Edmiston Sr.
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