Potatoes are a tuber of particular importance to my family. According to the Bones’ family legend, the Bones left Bone County in Ireland during the potato famine. With nothing to grow and even less to eat, the options were slim pickin’ for their future.

So like so many before and after them, the Bones left in search of a new land to sow and harvest new fields of barely nutritious, starchy vegetables. The funny thing with family history is that although the past is the past, it is guarded by a select few who may or may not be willing to share. This is the extent of early Bones’ history as people of the potatoes.

One way or another, the Bones landed on Alabama’s shores of plentiful opportunity. Filling in the gaps with my imagination, I can only imagine a bunch of grimy faced potato farming relatives packed into a raft, as inspired by the recent images of the Syrian refugees, floating up to a sandy, white beach.

No one stopped the Bones from crawling onto the shore and standing up to claim their new lives as farmers and later sharecroppers. The oppression of the working poor is another post, altogether. The Bones were able to create a new life, one in which their basic needs were met so they could go onto to attain greater success as bootleggers and furniture makers.

This brings me to the point, we were all immigrants at one time or another. Of course, that excludes our real forefathers, the Native Americans, whom I haven’t heard speaking out against our current immigration situation. So live and let live, or go a step further to help others to live better. Immigration should not be a political issue, it should be one of the human right to live free of hunger and hate, to have shoes and housing, and to grow potatoes if you darned well please.

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