49 people killed while praying at a mosque in New Zealand. Children gunned down at school. Jews attacked for being Jewish. When does it stop? Well, it continues. . .in our backyard. My colleague Attorney Gino Megna represents a couple originally from Colombia and now living in Clearwater. They bought a gift for their 12-year-old daughter recently at Big Lots in Clearwater. Unfortunately, they had to return it because it was defective. English is their second language and it’s limited. They did their best to express themselves in English but were met with derision, insults, and a dismissive attitude.
They left the store humiliated and angry due to the treatment they received. Adiela Muñoz has a heart condition and the stressful situation at Big Lots only aggravated the symptoms. She felt like she was going to die. She felt as if she was treated like a criminal. Big Lots employees even asked her and her husband about their immigration status which obviously has nothing to do with a retail purchase or return of merchandise.
Is this how we want to be known? What about welcoming the stranger? What about “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” That’s what made America great. We have a history of welcoming everyone to our shores. We were and still are a melting pot where anyone can realize the American dream, regardless of skin color, national origin, or religious faith.
We’re better than this. Adiela Munoz, her husband, and her child deserve better. We can do better. Let’s start acting like Americans. @https://www.facebook.com/gino.megna