Threatened Future

“I have to almost be looking behind me in fear that a police officer might stop me,” Ezequiel is a student at a college in San Jose and now fears walking on the street. With all the mixed emotions from different people in the U.S. about the new elected president, Donald Trump. This has created fear all over the country for many immigrants like Ezequiel, who moved to the U.S. in 2005 in hopes to better himself and being successful in his life. He moved to the San Jose area when he was 8 years old and has lived in the area since then, now attending college in San Jose. There were many obstacles he faced when he first moved to the U.S. He had to deal with both laughs and discrimination. Ezequiel worked very hard in school for his first year in the U.S. because he really wanted to learn the language. Eager to communicate with people, still trying to improve himself every day.

“Threatened Future” Picture taken by Alyssa Jimenez

When in school, he dealt with a lot of discrimination from peers and even some teachers at the beginning. Teachers would kick him out of class for not being able to understand and he had to deal with bullying from some of his peers. When sitting at lunch other students would look at him and laugh. He got left out of the credits section for the school’s yearbook because he was the only Mexican person of color in the yearbook club. He has worked his way up and now feels more comfortable in the community. Ezequiel seeks to finish college and eventually attend grad school so he may accomplish his dream of completing higher education.

In other major cities such as Los Angeles, CA there are many immigrants who are facing detention at the various sites in the U.S. According to an article by Bruce J. Einhorn, a journalist for the L.A. Times “There are an estimated 3,700 immigrants in detention across the greater L.A. area, according to mayor’s office.” Cases have flooded the courtrooms in recent days are hard cases in which people might face serious consequences. According to Judge Dana Marks some of these cases are “death penalty cases heard in traffic court settings.” A lot of these immigrants are not able to afford an attorney therefore facing major issues.

Another case in Seattle, ICE, Immigration and Customs Enforcement swept up Daniel Ramirez Medina, 23, and took him into trial which lasted six weeks. After his dad was arrested, ICE arrested Medina and accused him of being involved with street gang related activities. He had been detained, even though he was protected under Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (also known as the DACA program). After going through several trials and interrogations he was set free after six weeks of being detained. He will not get back the 46 days that he was detained and while he is glad to be back to his family and friends, those 46 days could have been avoided.

With the new president, Ezequiel fears that his dreams and aspirations that he has been working for so long to accomplish might fall apart. He fears that these things that are happening to other immigrants might be happen to him and get in the way of his goals. “I am scared I will not be able to achieve the things I wanted to achieve,” he fears. When in high school, he was a student athlete, playing water polo, while achieving a 3.00 GPA and above every year. He has always worked hard and was able to take honors and AP classes. When he started college, he had units from all the hard work and dedication he had put on while in high school. He believes that not all Mexicans are the same way, when it comes to stereotypes. He has been working hard from the moment he got to the U.S. and wants to achieve great things but now fears to even be out in public.