Everyone is so concerned about the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, but the biggest problem we face today is the invasion of Columbus (Ohio) by the Somalis. Do you realize that the second largest populations of Somalis in the US can be found in Columbus? What’s worse is the fact that they are migrating from the largest concentration, located in Minnesota, to Columbus due to the greater job opportunities that exist here. Because of this, I had to change my drugstore from a place open 24 hours @ day and 7 days a week to one that is only open Monday through Friday from 9:00 to 5:00 and only until Noon on Saturdays.
Why you ask? Well, we were having communication issues with Kroger’s Drugs once they hired Somali clerks, but our Doctor’s office would eventually straighten things out with only a couple of days of interruption in the availability of my medication. This changed once our Doctor’s office also hired Somali clerks. The interruption in my medicinal service started lasting weeks instead of days. Obviously, having no formal Government to speak of in Somalia, the Somalis have trouble communicating among themselves. We tried intervening by scheduling doctor’s appointments to rectify their issues, but I got too ill without my medication to sit for the 4 to 5 hours that our Doctor’s “appointment” required for the clerks to recognize the presence of an American patient.
Still, the delays were not life-threatening because the State of Ohio would intervene (they had a large translator service available to them) and I would eventually get my medication. The problem became intolerable once the State of Ohio started hiring Somalis. Apparently the translating service was deemed no longer required and was abolished. We could not get anyone to help us when re-filling, valid, unexpired prescriptions since we could not convince the Somali State employees that Medicaid was available to ALL Ohio residents, not just Somali immigrants.
Today I am safe because we shifted to a small, American owned drug store that actually provides me with enough medication to last until they get all issues cleared up between the Doctor’s office and the State of Ohio when re-filling my prescriptions. Even they were having problems communicating with the various agencies until they finally procured the services of a Somali translator (which was extremely difficult since there were no longer Somalis looking for jobs in that area). Ohio State University was going to expand their Somali language and cultural classes to help provide American translators for the area, but the Board of Directors decided that the money would be better spent in providing expanded English and American culture classes (that was in September of 2004 and since the enrollment was so negligible, not only were the expanded classes abolished, but the classes in understanding American Culture were discontinued altogether).
Today, I live in constant fear that my pharmacy will sell out to one of the many Somali Entrepreneurs that infest the Columbus area and to survive, I will have to re-locate. If I move to North Carolina, will I have to learn how to speak Southern? My Y’alls and Sure ‘nuffs good buddy do require some brushing up, but I understand that Duke University offers some excellent courses in adopting the Southern Cultural way of life. Y’all come back now right cheer for mo’ about this problem good buddy, Ya hear?