Welcome to the West! A FAQ For Immigrants

Welcome to the West! A FAQ For Immigrants

Perhaps this little rhyme can help: To live here in the West, God willing, just say no to honor killing.
Brian Sack

Greetings, and welcome to the West! We’re thrilled that you chose us over all the other options out there, although it kind of makes sense because everywhere else is mostly gruesome, so everyone keeps coming here.

It shouldn’t take long before you realize you made the right choice. We have so much to offer! How do we know? Because everyone’s emigrating here and not to Laos or Burkina Faso.

We’re betting the West is quite different from the place whence you came—otherwise you’d have stayed put. We assume you want to stay, so to make your assimilation as seamless as possible, we’ve endeavored to answer some common questions.

Why Is That Woman Walking By Herself?

Not having asked her, we have to assume that she is going somewhere. It could be to a job, a store, a boyfriend, a girlfriend (guys love this), or she may be headed to a comedy class where she paid $375 to be told she’s hilarious. It’s hard to tell unless you ask, but nobody asks because nobody cares, because why the hell would you?

Why Isn’t that Woman All Covered Up?

As you have noticed, Western women are not covered from head to toe in an unsettling black bedsheet. This is mainly because it’s the twenty-first century. We have Oculus Rift, the Apple Watch, autonomous Teslas, and women are allowed to choose whether they ghost about town under a bedsheet. Unsurprisingly, most choose not to. This was the very same choice women in Iran made until the Angry Bearded Yelling Men took over in 1979!

Does an Uncovered Woman Desire My Hand on Her Crotch?

You should always assume the answer is no. Creepily traipsing about the mall in a disconcerting black bedsheet does not make a woman more pious, pure, or moral than an un-sheeted one. It makes her subservient to a misogynistic, patriarchal system derived from a Bronze Age origin story that was copped together from other Bronze Age origin stories.

In the Modern Age, the sexual proclivities of a woman can only be ascertained by conversing with her. This can be done over dinner and drinks—or if you both swipe right on Tinder.

Who Owns This Woman?

Well, that’s the thing: She owns her. The notion that women have zero say in their lives seems limited to countries that people thoroughly enjoy emigrating from. Not sure if there’s a correlation there, but it’s just wise to disabuse yourself of the notion that women are chattel. By and large, they cannot be told what to do, and you will not be able to prevent them from watching “Downton Abbey.”

You will have to accept that you are not the boss of them. Any other mindset is dated and coincidently ensures you will not be dated. In Western society, it is quite common for women to rise to positions of great prestige and power. In fact, Republicans are working hard to ensure that a woman is elected president of the United States!

My Daughter Has Dishonored Me and Needs to Be Killed. Cool?

Nope! Nope! Listen, we really want a hiccup-free assimilation, so we’re glad you asked. Most of us in the West—actually, all of us—are incapable of picturing a scenario where strangling a daughter is an actual option. This bears repeating: Countries that turn a blind eye to filicide seem to be the very same countries people don’t want to live in. Coincidence? Who knows, but no. Perhaps this little rhyme can help: To live here in the West, God willing, just say no to honor killing.

Shall We at Least Murder These Kissing Men?

Dude, what’s with the murder thing? Assimilation doesn’t have to be hard. Once again, we’re not asking you to celebrate, approve, or embrace anything you don’t like, but you will have to tolerate it in order for the assimilation thing to stick.

It is certainly within your rights to wag your finger at such behavior because you vehemently oppose it or secretly like it. You’re even welcome to join the Westboro Baptist Church should you wish to do god’s work and torment grieving people at funerals.

We can’t say this enough, though: Tossing someone off of a building is viable only in countries no one wants to live in. We strongly suggest you find a less violent, equally petulant response to things you don’t like—such as when Orthodox Jews delay a plane’s departure because they don’t want to sit next to icky women.

How Can I Silence These Opinions I Dislike?

That’s going to be a problem, because one of the more popular liberties in the West is the freedom to speak one’s mind, and the inability of the government to prevent it. Various Western countries have different takes on what constitutes free speech, as does Twitter (ask @Nero), but suffice to say there is a very good chance you will hear something with which you disagree. This can be a hard cross to bear (sorry for the Christian reference) for folks coming from countries that routinely make people dead just for drawing pictures or saying words.

How Can I Silence These Opinions that Offend Me?

Dislike or offend—it doesn’t matter. As famously well-assimilated immigrant Salman Rushdie once said: “Nobody has the right to not be offended.” We understand that certain cultures have a terrible time handling criticism or dissent, but it was you who came here—without a gun to your head. If there was a gun to your head, it was being held by someone who couldn’t handle criticism or dissent.

And there you have it.

We’re confident that with a little effort you will not only assimilate into Western society, but you’ll add to it some elements of your country’s rich culture and history. Let’s just leave the weirder, medieval bits behind—you know, the elements that create the oppression, squalor, murder, and mayhem folks tend to flee from. As you know first-hand, emigrating sucks.

So, welcome to the West! This is your chance to start anew, settle down, and embrace all the great opportunities available to you. If you do it right, you’ll raise a generation of children who’ll take it all for granted.

If we fail to live up to your expectations and you find yourself pining for the comfort of the theocracy, kleptocracy, or dictatorship that you fled, let us know as soon as possible! We want you to be 100 percent satisfied, or your country back.

Brian Sack writes things of varying lengths with the best of intentions. He once had a very funny show on a network that ran out of money. www.briansack.com

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