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under the Old Age Assistance program died in the battlefields of World War II. Economic Opportunity Act be allocated would assure the necessities of life and The Korean conflict called forth more for an extensive statewide program that essential medical care, but Texas restricts patriotism and sacrifices from this group. will provide citizenship classes for those this help to citizens. The state does not even help the blind or totally disabled senior non-citizens. Only four states make citizenship mandatory for this program : Texas, Colorado, Indiana, and South Carolina. The other 46 states ask residency requirements if citizenship requirements are not met, or they have no citizenship or residency prerequisites. As you all know, O.A.A. is one of the public assistance programs under the social security act in which needy aged are helped. The federal government helps the states finance their O.A.A. programs; each state administers the program within its own laws and regulations. The federal social security act does not require citizenship as a condition of eligibility for O.A.A. toward which federal funds may be used. Of course, if the senior non-citizen became a naturalized American citizen he would be eligible for O.A.A. But this is much easier said than done. Take, for example, the tremendous educational and psychological problem these foreign-born aged face in studying for their naturalization examination. Over half of them-17,794 out of 30,925have no formal education at all; only two and a half thousand have more than a sixth grade education. They did not become American citizens in their earlier years for several reasons. We must consider that as Mexican immigrants they were treated as social inferiors and as foreigners; undoubtedly this is one of the key reasons why they remained foreigners. Carey McWilliams, in his book North From Mexico, referred to this very problem in these words: “Hedged in by group hostility, the immigrants long ago lost interest in citizenship. Lack of funds, the language difficulty, and illiteracy were important factors, but not nearly as influential as segregation and discrimination. Mexicans have never been encouraged by prevailing community standards to become citizens.” THE NEED of the senior noncitizens for aid in their old age is great. They are no longer able to work; their past poverty and exclusion from benefits leaves them unprepared to survive decently. Unwillingly, they become a serious economic burden to younger relatives who themselves are pressed for sustenance. And thus the legacy of poverty continues. There is no other group of people in the United States more deserving of assistance than the senior non-citizens. In their working years they provided the common labor that changed a once barren Southwest into the economic giant of today. They comprised at times more than 80% of the common labor force in industries such as cotton, sugar beets, railroads, truck and produce farming. And mind you, this was low-paid, hard, monotonous, backbreaking stoop labor no one else wanted to do. In the 1940’s the senior non-citizens’ contributions to this country turned from sweat to blood as thousands of their sons %to The Texas Observer Many of the senior non-citizens have been residents of Texas all of their adult lives and for several decades have contributed to the economy of the state. In a recent study of 87 senior non-citizens, 38 of them had been in the U.S. for more than 50 years. One of them has spent 71 of his 73 years in this country. Senior noncitizens have paid their equal share of taxes the same as any American citizen. Certainly, they should at least be considered and recognized as just as deserving of assistance as foreigners in other countries receiving American foreign aid. The Save Our Senior Non-Citizens Committee hopes to generate statewide support for legislation that will make residency qualifications another means of receiving old age assistance in Texas. In the meantime, we ‘ask that funds under the Feb. 13 is the 20th anniversary of the air raids on Dresden. Margret Hofmann of Austin, mother of five, writes about this first hand. Austin The worst and most indiscriminate one-day massacre in all of recorded history happened not in Hiroshima, but in Dresden. Ten weeks before VE Day this German city was almost totally destroyed in 14 hours as a result of two British night air raids and one American daytime attack. About 135,000 persons were killed, at least tens of thousands more than died in Hiroshima. Dresden was not fortified, and it contained very little industry. It was one of Europe’s most beautiful, medieval baroque cities. Almost half of its population of about one million 20 years ago this week were refugees who, in the preceding days and weeks, had streamed in from the eastern sections of Germany that were already overrun by Russian troops. The city was considered so safe, it contained practically no air raid shelters or other protection against bombs; it was crowded with hospitals and camps for evacuees from all threatened parts of Germany. I lived in a suburb of Dresden during the time of the devastation, and I have asked, as many have, Why did these raids take place? Why were 16,000 acres of downtown Dresden bombed or burned out? To hasten Germany’s surrender? The war was nearly over anyway. To demoralize the people? The raids had an effect in the opposite direction. The actual purpose, according to an objective study by David Irving published a year ago,* was to bolster Western bargaining power at the Yalta Conference by proving Western air power was superior. *The Destruction of Dresden, by David Irving, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, $4.95. who do not have an opportunity to attend classes. We ask that the Naturalization Service provide us a list of examination questions that are considered “must” questions so that we can use them to expedite the preparation of the senior non-citizens for citizenship. N OUR CONTACTS with the impoverished senior non-citizens, we find that they are not resentful or bitter because welfare assistance is beyond their grasp. Instead, these humble aged, who have endured lifetimes of disappointments and heartaches, seemingly adjust to their meager means of existence, and they say, “Dios nos ayuda”God will help us; “Dios dispone”God will provide. Let us help God help them. Yet because of weather, the raids could not be carried through until after the Yalta conference. The attacks were planned, and consequently they were executed, whether they still served their original purpose or not! They were ordered concentrated on the heart-of-town residential area, ignoring explicitly the few targets of military value. suddenly appeared low over the city fired on everything that moved. . . . One section of Mustangs concentrated on the river banks where masses of bombed out people had gathered.” The eye witness accounts and pictures cannot fail to cause one to reflect that death is death, whether in war or peace, whether that of the enemy or one’s fellow citizens; that women and children, no matter what nationality, are the same everywhere, and that those people actually responsible for starting the war, those who have been “asking for it,” are not likely to be the ones who pay the horrible price. And lastly, that the vastness of the disaster is not diminished simply because it occurred far away. When one reads of people sucked into the firestorm to perish in the 1,800 degree heat ; victims who had become one solid mass with the melted asphalt; streets strewn with bodies and parts of bodies, as I saw them with my own eyes; basements filled with many layers of bodies; people burnt, cremated, torn, and crushed to death; wretched refugees from the east clad only in rags, and dead children still in carnival costumes, one thinks he has read all he can possibly bear. But then the photographs of the makeshift pyres as thousands of victims are prepared for burning! To this day I cannot forget the stench. MARGRET HOFMANN r 4111111.1.11111….114100101000MMIIIM.M11.0041010i0 011=1110.11=114141M.11MONO111.4.4111111.111101.01111.4111111/11 To This Day I Cannot Forget 1