Immigration policy is currently being heavily influenced by top leaders in the United States government, but several have, and continue to speak out about the substantial role immigration has played in shaping America as it were today. Alexis Ohanian, co-founder of Reddit, an online social news and media platform where more than 11,000 active registered members can share and discuss content relating to several topics is one of these individuals.
Keeping true to the Reddit spirit, Ohanian shared an important post with Reddit community members, describing his background and stance on immigration, in response to US president Trump’s executive order temporarily banning travel from seven Muslim-majority countries.
As many of you know, I am the son of an undocumented immigrant from Germany and the great grandson of refugees who fled the Armenian Genocide.
A little over a century ago, a Turkish soldier decided my great grandfather was too young to kill after cutting down his parents in front of him; instead of turning the sword on the boy, the soldier sent him to an orphanage. Many Armenians, including my great grandmother, found sanctuary in Aleppo, Syria—before the two reconnected and found their way to Ellis Island. Thankfully they weren’t retained, rather they found this message:
“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
In an interview with CNN, the tech executive shared why immigration policy is so important to him. “It was something I felt I had to speak about in a personal capacity, and it became a professional capacity, because the two were so intertwined”.
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