A few months ago, I was working in the yard when a pickup truck stopped on the street and a young man hopped out and walked over to me extending a business card. He said if I ever needed any help around the yard or property to call him. He spoke heavily accented but quite serviceable English. I imagined he was a newcomer to our shores.

His card lay on my desk until I realized it was time to do our fire abatement. I called the number and he said, “Fern Valley? I’ll be right over.”

He was. He looked over the job and gave me a price that seemed a bit high but was great value compared to how much I didn’t want to do it myself. We agreed that he would do it in a reasonable time period. I was surprised that, rather than drive away, he grabbed a rake and spent the next 90 minutes on the job.

Over the next four days, he was here every afternoon (perhaps after other employment?) When it became clear that we had miscommunicated about the extent of the job, he calmly explained why it would cost more to do the work I needed and we agreed to proceed. He finished the larger job the same day.

I was so impressed I hired him to come every other month to keep our property fire safe and attractive.

This is exactly the kind of citizen we should be happy to welcome.

The president of the U.S. would have us limit immigrants to our country to protect American jobs. I would note that in the many years we have lived here, no stereotypical “American citizen” has ever stopped by offering to work for me.

Let’s give the whole immigrant-bashing thing a rest. After all, even a second generation German immigrant can become president.

Mark Salter