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  • Edición impresa de Mayo 6, 2014

 

It is a joy to witness the graduating season. For the Latino community it is one more step affirming their presence in the country. It is difficult for the general public to accept that the Latino presence in the United States is grounded in two roots, the Spaniard and the indigenous, who were here before other Europeans arrived to the Americas.

Taking a look at the United States map, one can see Spanish names as far up as the northern part of California, also in Florida, New Mexico and other states that once were the Spanish colonies and later Mexican territory.

Latinos also share a common root with Native Americans, a bond that sometimes is ignored but it accounts for the long lasting presence of Latinos everywhere in the new world. Nevertheless, there is this notion that Latinos just ‘arrived’, they are all immigrants, and even more, most of them are undocumented.

Even if there is no acceptance for the historical fact that Latinos have been here even before the ‘Anglos’, the truth of the matter is that every year more and more Latinos are graduating from schools, colleges and universities in this country.

Many of them are bilingual and bi-cultural, they have mastered the tools to navigate in both cultures and be able to understand and communicate well at any level.

Having thousands of Latinos graduating speaks very well about a nation that is capable of investing in the future of the children and spends resources and time on them.

As usual the politicians, living in their own particular world, debate about the fate of millions who are considered “undocumented’. Meanwhile their children and grandchildren are taking giant steps to move ahead. History will judge those who failed to act in accord with the changing times. But the new generation will remember those who blocked their parents’ possibilities and made things harder for them.

There are thousands of people advocating for the immigrants. There are those who know ‘someone’ who is a hard worker and goes to work and church with them, and they fail to see why these people have to keep running and are not given a chance to settle down in this country and contribute even more to the general well being of the entire population.

There are thousand of teachers everywhere who spent countless hours with children who now may have an opportunity to be successful and yet those children always have burdened hearts due to their parent’s or other relatives and friends legal status. I continue to be amazed at the endurance and resilience of those children who made it through their studies, always having to look over their shoulder just in case ‘the authorities’ would deport one or both parents.

What should have been a carefree time to enjoy games, and youth, in many cases was an unstable home situation that continues to this day, even for those who are now documented under the DACA provision offered by this administration.

It is a joyful day indeed! Because entire communities are saying, the law has not passed, but we made it right, with our lives, with our example. When each one of these graduates crosses the stage, extends his/her hand and receives a diploma, it is a time of victory, for them, their families, friends, teachers and communities.

We will continue to rally around those winners. They ran the race and won for all of us!

Let the years pass and the number of graduates increase. History is stronger than all opposition and hate. This is a victory of love over ignorance, arrogance and hate.

 

 


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