... the tales of two sisters

Dana lives in Seattle, and Tracie lives in Germany. We are businesswomen, writers and humorists. We write about life, dating, and today's modern women.

Be Afraid of the Enormity of My Question Today

Last evening, my 16 year old daughter and I were discussing her essay question which read: Is America the land of opportunity, and to what extent does this opportunity exist for all people?

Immigrants, Walls, DACA…

I reflected on a few years ago when my uncle, Federal Judge Richard Jones was a recipient of the prestigious Ellis Island Award. I shared with my daughter that her uncle’s mother, my grandmother was an immigrant from Honduras. She landed in this country and became a life-long domestic who married my grandfather a carpenter. Together they raised 8 highly successful individuals who are respected in law, entrepreneurship and entertainment.

Last week while traveling in Winter Park, Florida we stayed at the Alfond Hotel. Famous for it’s phenomenal art, the one piece that caught my eye is this:

Notice the water faucets? I was born out of the turbulent 60’s, where race riots, segregation and Jim Crow Laws existed. Imagine, I told my daughter, I couldn’t have sipped from the same fountain as my boyfriend. My daughter born in 2001 has witnessed borders, walls and unwelcome signs. She has paid witness to low wage immigrant workers living in our apartment buildings trying to make ends meet. She has witnessed local gentrification, isolation, and the suffrage of other nations.

So, I ask you- how would you answer the question?… Is America still the land of opportunity, and to what extent does this opportunity exist for all?

Recently my ethnic friend, who will remain anonymous popped in to Red Robin in Bellevue (a predominately white suburb of Washington), her secret pleasure. Waiting for her to go order, she donned a Seattle baseball cap. A white man beckoned her across the bar and said, “You shouldn’t be wearing a Seattle hat, you should be wearing an INS hat! Immigration!!”

As we celebrate Black History Month, today February 7, marks the 22nd anniversary of my father’s front page Seattle Times feature. Yesterday, I drove by the now demolished centrally located Jackson street Promenade 23. This project used to house an Ethiopian clothing store, a Mexican run eatery, an Asian hair supplies goods, an African American salon. It was a true multi-cultural melting pot. I know what my father’s answer would be… The struggle continues…