Saturday, February 13, 2016

75 Years Ago, Ellis Island Knew How to Go About Showing Humaneness for Undocumented Aliens (Hint: It's the Context, Stupid)

A 75 Years Ago item gives what proves to be a far more humane policy of humaneness for individual undocumented aliens than a blanket amnesty for all comers.
New York Herald Tribune, European Edition, Feb. 5, 1941:
Michael Storrie, nine-year-old Scot, who arrived alone on Monday in New York in search of refuge, stood dry-eyed yesterday before a special board of inquiry at Ellis Island and heard himself ordered excluded from the United States for lack of proper entry papers. His unblinking acceptance of the blow moved the board to arrange an appeal and an immediate parole. Michael, whose father is in Lisbon on a war mission and whose mother is doing war work in Bermuda, was to have been the guest of Mr. and Mrs. George C. McIntosh at Clifton Springs, Va., for the duration of the war, but he did not have a card of identification and American visa.
Apparently, the boy refugee would go on to win his stay.

Another 75 Years Ago item from the previous summer (New York Herald Tribune, July 7, 1940) had
Seventy-one calm and self-contained Britain children [arriving in the Big Apple on July 6, 1940] aboard the Cunard White Star liner Scythia, bringing with them cricket bats, governesses, flannel shorts and a restrained curiosity about that unbelievable place, America. They were the first large group of thousands of English children who will be brought to Canada and the United States for the duration of the war. The children in this group were not refugees in the grimmer sense of the word. Almost all of them were sons and daughters of well-to-do English families and were on their way to the homes of friends or relatives in this country