Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

06 Mar 2003, 9:05 a.m.

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Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2003 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

As I drove my parents from the airport, my mother asked about the US political situation. I tried to convey to her the despair. I kind of hope I didn't.

Last night I dreamt that my sister and I had to register with the government because we're of Asian descent. A full waiting room sat behind us and heard the government official question us about all our documents as he processed our papers. I insisted that this was unfair and unconstitutional, that my sister and I had been born here and that our allegiance was to this country. I ended by saying, "As far as I know, I am a loyal citizen."

The agent responded to my protests for the first time, saying, "Ah, but what about what you don't know?"

I remarked that this was evidently his most compelling argument.

He handed me a paper that I immediately wanted to burn or tear. "That's your receipt," he said.

"Is this in case I want a refund?" I said, getting a laugh from the waiting room.