Dear Donald Trump: Thank You
Dear Donald Trump,
You have reminded me of how blessed and lucky I am.
My grandparents on my father’s side came to the United States after they applied to be residents and were accepted. This amazing country reviewed an application and granted them resident status. This country accepted my grandparents even though, according to you, they were most likely involved in drugs, crime, and rape. That didn’t seem to impact the decision to let them reside in this country.
My father studied Civil Engineering in Mexico and immigrated to the United States a few years after and also received resident status which led to him becoming a citizen. In case you didn’t know, my father is one of the people responsible for your every day part of life. The buildings you own and work in, the streets you drive on, and the toilet you s*** in…is all because of Civil Engineers like my father. I am sooooo sorry that Mexico sent him to this country. I guess you don’t care much for America’s infrastructure (which, by the way, was rated a D+ on the 2013 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure). Every family, every community, and every business needs infrastructure to thrive….I guess except you. Strike 1 for future president status.
My mother came to this country at the age of 13 on a 6 month visitor visa. Like many other immigrants at the time, her and her siblings extended their visit and stayed in this country. As an illegal “alien” my mother enrolled in school and continued her studies through college.
The Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), Pub.L. 99–603, 100 Stat. 3445, enacted November 6, 1986, also known as the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, signed into law by Ronald Reagan on November 6, 1986, is an Act of Congress which reformed United States immigration law. This act legalized illegal immigrants who entered the United States before January 1, 1982 and had resided there continuously with the penalty of a fine, back taxes due, and admission of guilt; candidates were required to prove that they were not guilty of crimes, that they were in the country before January 1, 1982, and that they possessed minimal knowledge about U.S. history, government, and the English language.
My mother was granted citizen status under this act. That day was one of the happiest days of her life. She went on to become the President/CEO of Border Federal Credit Union (BFCU), headquartered in Del Rio, TX, serving 13 Texas counties with over $130 million in assets, 24,500 members and 114 employees. Under my mom’s leadership, BFCU obtained the Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) designation; expanded its field of membership from 3 to 13 Texas counties and implemented various programs that serve the underserved, the unbanked and the youth in her community.
Both my parents serve and hold officer positions on various volunteer boards at the local, state and national level. My father has served as County Survey for Val Verde County for the past couple of years. My mother has made presentations at local, state, national and international seminars, workshops, and conferences on various financial topics and credit union issues. This country was built on this idea of the American dream and both of my parents are living that dream. Strike 2 for future president status.
As a Latina and a millennial, I realized how much POWER I have. Like my father, I am a Civil Engineer. I am active on social media. I also serve and hold officer positions on various volunteer boards, like both my parents. I have a blog where I can reach a broader audience on issues I find important. I have POWER to bring change through my work as an engineer and through my writing. When you go and make statements like the one you made about immigrants, it gives me…us…the POWER to use it to bring consciousness to an issue that really needs to be resolved.
Politicians care so much about capturing the so-called “Latino vote” because the U.S. Hispanic population is exploding. The share of the population that considers itself Hispanic grew by nearly 49 percent between 2000 and 2012, according to census data. For the rest of the population, growth has only been 5.8 percent.
There are far more Mexicans that just want a better future for their family than the Mexicans that sell drugs, commit crimes, and hurt our beloved Country AND most practice their civil right to vote…so I guess there goes your chances of capturing our votes. Sorry. Strike 3 and you’re out.
You see, there are many people born in America and many immigrants from all different places that only have bad intentions for the “American Dream”. There are many criminals, drug users/dealers, and rapists in this country that we want to be rid of. But, sadly, your statements aren’t going to fix this problem. As for immigration reform, we need to use this conversation as a platform to really dig deep into the real issues and come up with a plan to benefit immigrants as well as our amazing country. There are many Mexicans today that want to come to America to realize their dreams. They want to come to America to make something better of themselves and to make America a better place. They want to bring change, vote, and be American. America is a country built by immigrants, so what makes these Mexicans so different?
Thank you for allowing all us Mexicans to show you and the world what kind of people we really are. I am proud to be Mexican, but I am also proud to be an American. My parents came to this country with dreams to make it and they did. America gave them that opportunity. My parents didn’t come to America to cause trouble or to just sit around and reap the “benefits”. They came to work hard and make something better of themselves. They came so that my siblings and I could have everything they never did.
So, here’s to you Mr. Trump! Cheers!
Anali Martinez — The Nueva Latina
Originally published at www.thenuevalatina.com on July 6, 2015.