A look Back
My Immigrant Family
In the early twentieth century, my maternal grandparents and great grandparents came to the United States from Italy, where economic and political unrest made life difficult. At that time Southern European immigrants in the United States endured racial discrimination, much like other immigrant groups do today. They were not entirely welcome, and yet necessary to the economy. My relatives worked hard as lacemakers and miners, truck drivers and factory laborers. Eventually they saved up enough money to open restaurants and grocery stores.
Two generations later, my cousins and I are unquestionably American. We graduated from American universities. We work in advertising and tech. No one thinks of us as immigrants or even the children of immigrants. No one questions if we should be here, or if we are contributing to society. We are living my grandparents’ American dream.