Migrant Youth: January 2009 Archives

Every day is the same. An endless routine that never ends no matter how bad you want it to. You're stuck in eternal purgatory because of a decision your parents made for you when you were only seven years old. Too young to understand what's going on, but old enough to know that things would never be the same again. 

For the last 16 years of your life, you've adapted and embraced your adopted country, assimilating and succeeding in spite of all of the daily hardships that you have to overcome. You ask your parents why they decided to bring you to the U.S. and it's always the same answer, "Te queriamos dar las oportunidades que nosotros nunca teniamos," but that isn't enough. It's never enough. Good intentions have led to some of the most horrific atrocities in human history, but you can't blame them.  After all, they're your parents. 

Growing up in the shadows, you learn to adapt, to hide your true identity like a costumed super hero. No one can ever know the real you because you don't know how they'll react. All you want to do is be another regular person, but eventually you realize that you're not. You excel in your studies and take advantage of the system, fulfilling the destiny your parents laid out for you.


I'm totally crowding out Janna's post by writing this, but I think it is absolutely essential that I put this at the top of Citizen Orange loud and clear: vote for the DREAM Act at change.org.  Voting closes tomorrow at 5 p.m. and I'm pulling out all the stops today to make sure the DREAM Act stays in the top 10.  If you've voted already, digg, reddit, mixx and stumble this post to make sure others hear about this.

My first post of the 2009 was a poorly written interior monologue about the conflicts between blogging and organizing.  If there's any place that blogging and organizing intersects, it's with undocumented youth, or DREAMies as they like to be called.  For those that aren't familiar with the DREAMie struggle, DREAMies are those who were brought over to the United States as children, usually without any say whatsoever in the matter.  As Senator Dick Durbin, one of the major sponsors of the DREAM Act has said, the only sin they've committed is "the crime of obeying their parents."

Often, the only country DREAMies have ever known is the United States.  Though I'm not a fan of the word, they are culturally "American" in every sense of the word, except for they don't have papers that say they are a U.S. citizens.  Personally, that's not the most significant reason why I advocate for the DREAM Act though and support DREAMies whenever I can.

Propel the DREAM Act

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Thousands of students are hoping for the chance to realize their dreams of higher education and employment as fully contributing members of society through the passage of the DREAM Act. Undocumented students are currently faced with closed doors at every turn, through no fault of their own. They are barred from receiving financial aid and scholarships, and some states have begun to bar undocumented students from attending community colleges. Even after working hard and paying their own way through college, their job prospects are cut off by their lack of working papers. They can't get a driver's license, can't work legally, can't be the fully productive Americans they want to be.

We all lose when the talent and ambition of these bright young people goes to waste.

We can all win by opening the doors of opportunity to those who work so hard and deserve the chance to succeed.

You can take 2 easy steps to support the passage of the DREAM Act!

At Change.gov, add your vote and your voice to President-elect Obama's Citizen's briefing book. The most popular ideas will be presented to him after his swearing in, so every vote is vital to getting the DREAM Act the attention it deserves!

At Change.org, your vote will help make the DREAM Act a priority in making positive change in our country a reality. The deadline for this action is Thursday, January 15, at 5 p.m. EST.

Help ensure a bright future for the United States of America through our immigrant children. It's how this country has always grown and prospered! It's the American Dream!