To the editor:
John "Osawatomie" Brown represented courage, conviction and true independence from a tyrannical system of oppression. He was a civil rights activist who outwardly and openly challenged the United States government in its blindness and hypocrisy to the "peculiar institution" of his time: slavery.
Today, we face a new peculiar institution in the hiring of undocumented (illegal) aliens. Too many companies are hiring these people for what we would consider "slave wages" while the federal government turns its back. These companies with their Washington connections have been getting away with this new brand of slavery for many years.
One can hardly blame these people for wanting to cross the border where they know jobs are plentiful and they will be paid a far better (albeit minimal) wage than what they get in their own countries of origin. It seems sad, though, to use one's "yearning to be free" as justification to enslave them. When the president and double-speak politicians of both parties say these are only jobs Americans won't take, they are giving a wink and nod to their corporate money supporters that they plan no large-scale enforcement of our border laws.
John Brown led a raid on the federal government at Harpers Ferry in 1859. Although a more civil approach needs to be implemented, a figurative "raid" on Washington by modern abolitionists might again gain the attention of a hypocritical government. Kansans should reconsider their alignment with the two-party system, another peculiar institution.
Robert M. Tyler,