Trump’s re-revised immigration stance extends hate-fueled campaign
Donald Trump recently made it clear that, despite fears from conservatives, he has not eased his grip on immigration.
His speech came on the heels of a meeting with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto after being invited to Mexico. This seems like nothing but a good photo op for someone who bashed Mexicans as “people that have lots of problems” in the beginning of his campaign.
Trump’s last line makes me feel so sad for the state of this country and the people who think Trump is speaking for them.
I’m sure you have heard this before, but not all Mexican immigrants are what Trump has labeled. My father came to this country with a dream and a willingness to work for it no matter what. He also came here by jumping on a train and crossing the border when he was 17.
Although he was breaking the law, this country gave him an opportunity to make the most of himself. That chance brought him to Chicago, where he worked for a large welding company just outside the city, pushing a broom and performing general labor duties.
Before he left the company in 2015, after more than 35 years working there, my father had outlasted almost everyone. He was the foreman in charge of every employee.
Now, he lives in Houston to be closer to his grandkids, is a U.S. citizen and plans to proudly vote for Hillary Clinton this November. My father has paid his taxes every year that he has lived here. He is a necessary member in his community and has had two children who served in the military.
Immigrants like my dad live all over this country. They may have started out not following the law, but they work to fulfill the American dream.
My father is one of the examples we should use in discussions about immigrants who take the risk of entering the U.S. — illegal it may be — and want to contribute to it under looming threats of deportation or imprisonment.
Not the only dreamer
Dr. Alfredo Quinones-Hinojosa literally hopped a fence into California as a young man. He then attended Harvard Medical School and is now a neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Despite his illegal status, this great country gave him a chance to succeed and make a difference.
Julissa Arce bought her fake papers in a living room in Texas with no intention to take advantage of this country by lying to, stealing from or ruining people.
Arce started working for Goldman Sachs in 2004 during her senior year of college. She went from intern to analyst, associate and then vice president. She later became a director at Merrill Lynch. She was able to accomplish all of this despite her illegal start.
My father and these are just three among thousands of people willing and ready to put in the hard work for a slice of the American dream. When Trump says he wants to deport 11 million immigrants without consideration and amnesty, he is talking about people like my dad, Dr. Quinones-Hinojosa and Arce.
Instead of building walls and trying to get rid of people who are just looking for a chance, we should take the time to discuss how we can keep the immigrants who want to better the nation’s economy.
The U.S. was built on the backs of immigrants from the beginning of its history. Let’s just hope the current immigrants legally entering this country are treated with the same dignity and respect given to those who built this nation.
We should also realize that illegal immigrants can help rather than just supplying drugs, wreaking havoc and violating lives.
Opinion editor Frank Campos is a media production senior and can be reached at [email protected]