Bruce Jenner reinvented himself as a woman. Rachel Dolezal declared herself black. Andrew Cuomo now calls himself an immigrant.
America truly is the land of opportunity.
“We are a state of immigrants,” New York’s governor told an audience in Puerto Rico. “I am an immigrant. I’m wholly against this anti-immigrant fever that has been stoked during the political campaign.”
The locals remembering the dad of the dauphin surely wondered if they had lost something in translation. New York Governor Mario Cuomo, like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, came to this country…from this country. Adam Shaw noted on these pages on Monday that “people from Puerto Rico are also not immigrants, as the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory.” Cuomo’s confusion encompassed not just himself but the people surrounding.
Cuomo also insisted in June that he migrated to this country from somewhere else.
“You want to deport immigrants?” the New York governor rhetorically asked President Donald Trump. “Start with me because I’m an immigrant.”
But Cuomo, like Trump, came into this world in Queens, which, although the setting for the 1988 immigration comedy Coming to America (“Let your soul glow!”), remains, like Puerto Rico, very much part of the United States. Andrew Cuomo is from Italy like Eddie Murphy is from Zamunda.
Surely parts of Queens, as the philosopher John Rocker once noted, make an American feel like a foreigner. But Andrew Cuomo now resides in Albany, Boringville, U.S.A. Nobody confuses Albany for Albania—or anywhere else outside of the United States. And in the United States, whose Constitution prohibits immigrants from becoming president, it now pays to invent alien origins in order to win the White House. Meet the new birthers, not the same as the old birthers.
Some immigrants come to this country for the American Dream. Other “immigrants” born in this country suffer from the American Delusion.
To paraphrase that immigrant president from the exotic nation of Whittier: we are all immigrants now.