The hashtag for today’s Supreme Court hearing is #Justice4AZ. Here’s what people are tweeting:
#Justice4AZ: Tweets about today’s Supreme Court arguments on SB 1070 by Matt Hildreth on 04/25/12 at 9:59 am
Impacted Arizonans, Legal Experts, & Faith Leaders Urge Supreme Court to Strike Down SB 1070 by Mahwish Khan on 04/25/12 at 9:50 am
Today, hundreds of opponents of SB 1070 gathered in front of the U.S. Supreme Court to speak out againstArizona’s “show me your papers” anti-immigration law, lift up firsthand accounts about the devastating impact SB 1070 has had on individuals, families and communities in Arizona, and demand federal action on real, positive immigration reform. At a press conference and rally, a coalition of national civil rights, faith, and religious leaders joined forces alongside impacted Arizona residents to send an important message to the Court and states considering similar legislation: SB 1070 is not only unconstitutional, it’s un-American.
According to Marielena Hincapié, Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center:
The implications of this decision will reverberate far beyond Arizona’s borders, and undermine our fundamental principles of fairness and equality. Regardless of the outcome of the Supreme Court hearing, the National Immigration Law Center will continue to fight SB 1070 and laws like it until they are struck down as unconstitutional.
As Jim Shee’s story makes clear, the Arizona law has already lead to racial profiling and harassment of legal residents and citizens:
As a US citizen, a life-long resident of Arizona, I never expected that I would have to carry my passport with me all the time. But when SB1070 passed, I started getting stopped and interrogated for my papers, just because of the way I look. Unless SB1070 is struck down, I fear I will continue to face racial profiling and discrimination by the State of Arizona simply because of our race and the way we look. This is not what Arizona, or America is supposed to be about.
At the press conference, Shee also noted that his wife, who is of Japanese descent, had been forced to live in internment camps during World War II.
Cecillia Wang, Director, American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants’ Rights Project said:
Arizona persisted in its radical arguments that it should be able to enact its own state laws that transform police officers into immigration agents. Arizona is flying in the face of the founders’ core vision and Congress’s comprehensive federal immigration laws, and undermining basic American rights, national interests, and everyone’s public safety. The state reinforced today that SB 1070 cannot be allowed to stand.
Hilary O. Shelton, the Director of the NAACP Washington Bureau and the Senior Vice President for Advocacy and Policy said:
“We are here today to let the Supreme Court, as well as the court of public opinion, know that we will not allow these laws to take us back to the times of black codes when there were two distinct classes of people, and that these groups are treated differently by the law,” said “We will not return to a time when racial profiling is not only prevalent, it is in fact sanctioned and even called for by the law of the land.”
And, Gustavo Torres, Executive Director of CASA de Maryland, stated:
Our Maryland children learn about the continuing human rights violations under SB 1070 and our country’s ongoing struggle with race,” said. “Like in decades past, it is exactly at moments of extreme intolerance that our nation’s leaders must come together to ensure that all families are treated with dignity and respect.
The Supreme Court decision, expected in June, could send a strong message to states that it’s not their job to enforce federal immigration laws, or it could enable a patchwork of fifty state immigration laws, instead of a practical, national approach. While it’s certainly true that the current system is broken, only the federal government can resolve it.
“There is only one acceptable outcome in this case—the Supreme Court should uphold the Constitution and affirm that immigration enforcement must be handled at the federal level,” said Janet Murguia, President and CEO of the National Council of La Raza. “The answer to fixing our broken immigration system cannot be a patchwork of racial profiling laws. These laws have caused great harm to Latino families and other residents of these states. Unconstitutional bills like SB 1070 are false solutions that distract from the only real solution—comprehensive immigration reform at the federal level.”
Father Clete Kiley, Director of Immigration Policy, UNITE HERE said:
Arizona’s proposed solution to our broken immigration system, like Alabama’s law and the anti-immigrant laws passed by several other states, is no solution at all. America’s immigrants are our neighbors, our co-workers and our future. Criminalization and unfair targeting of our immigrant brothers and sisters is nothing more than scapegoating aimed at dividing us and distracting our attention from the real problems we face.
According to Marshall Fitz Director of Immigration Policy, Center for American Progress:
If the Supreme Court blesses these laws, it will not simply be resolving a doctrinal debate about the limits of state authority over immigration policy. It will effectively give states the green light to treat people differently based on their appearance rather than on their actions. And it will do so at a time when the color and face of our nation are changing dramatically, and ethnic diversity is becoming the norm across the country.
Our own Frank Sharry, Executive Director, America’s Voice Education Fund added:
Arizona’s draconian ‘show me your papers’ law has touched off a civil rights crisis not only in Arizona but across the country—several states like Alabama and Georgia have followed SB 1070’s poor example. Today, we’re not only giving a voice to the immigrant community, we’re giving a voice to the country by standing up for what’s right and putting an end to laws that encourage discriminatory behavior. As the history books are written, that’s the American way.
Activists, officials, lawyers, and lawmakers all over the nation have been speaking out about the dangers of the Arizona law and copycat legislation in other states. Last month, over 300 organizations joined 19 amici briefs supporting the U.S. Government in its legal challenge against SB 1070. Among those joining are 68 Members of Congress; forty-four former state attorneys general; dozens of cities and towns; labor, business, and civil rights leaders; law enforcement experts; foreign governments; the American Bar Association; the American Civil Liberties Union; former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright; former commissioners of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service; prominent religious institutions; and numerous faith, labor, and immigrants’ rights organizations.
And then there are the amici filers from the other side, opposing the Federal government’s challenge to SB 1070 and supporting the Arizona law. This list, compiled here by SCOTUS Blog, is a veritable who’s who of the anti-immigrant world, a collection of the worst-of-the-worst restrictionists, nativists, and extremists. It’s not enviable company: the list includes a recalled former state senator, a notorious sheriff currently being sued by the Justice Department, a group that once included a woman convicted of murder, a Member of Congress who thinks that we should treat undocumented immigrants like livestock, and several outfits with known ties to a white supremacist. They represent the dark side of America—the one that believes all immigrants are criminals and the only solution to our broken immigration system is mass deportation or the “kinder, gentler” version: self-deportation.
Outside the Supreme Court today, Evangelical leaders stood alongside DREAMers to speak out against Arizona’s law and voice their support for more and just immigration reform.
Rev. Gabriel Salguero, President, National Latino Evangelical Coalition said
Evangelicals are committed to laws that allow us to minister to and love the immigrant. SB1070 not only fosters profiling but also stands in the way of our Christian duty. Silence is not an option!
Katherine Tabares, a member of Make the Road New York, current valedictorian of her high school, and a fellow DREAMer, stated:
Today, I join my fellow immigrants and US Citizens to say that any action taken against an immigrant in Arizona, is an action taken against all of us,” said . “We are united to say that the Supreme Court of the United States must realize that the only solution to the immigration problem must come from the Federal government. We are all immigrants and what we want is succeed for our future and the future of the country. We have the right to live without fear!
Some speakers shared firsthand accounts of the shattering impact the law’s having on the ground.
From Dr. Warren Stewart, senior pastor of First Institutional Baptist Church in Phoenix:
As a pastor and civil rights leader in a diverse and tight-knit community in Phoenix, Arizona, I can attest to the culture of fear in Latino and immigrant communities created by SB 1070. This discriminatory law does not reflect our values, it is not who we are as a nation. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote from the Birmingham Jail, ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.’ Whatever the decision of the Supreme Court, Congress must unite and provide just, humane comprehensive immigration reform that represents our great nation at its best.
According to Dulce Matuz, president of the Arizona DREAM Act Coalition and recently selected as one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People:
I will always remember the day Governor Brewer signed SB1070 into law. From that day, my community has had to live in constant fear. All we immigrant youth want is to go to school, go to church, to work hard, and make our parents and teachers proud – by becoming contributing members of our community. As long as SB1070 stands, it feels like the government is trying to drive all of us Latinos and immigrants out of the state. But I grew up in Arizona, and it’s the only home I know. We are staying in Arizona, and standing up, not just for ourselves, but for Arizona, and for America, because this nation is better than the fear and discrimination that SB1070 represents.
Others noted the fact that SB 1070 will play a significant role in the elections this year, both in Arizona and across the nation.
Maria Teresa Kumar, founding Executive Director, Voto Latino said:
Arizona created an atmosphere in which fellow Americans are asking their Latino American neighbors for their papers. We have seen an influx of racial profiling come out of this that will now extend to the polls when Latino Americans go to vote and are asked for their identification.
And, Eliseo Medina, International Secretary-Treasurer of Service Employees International Union provided this important perspective:
When we vote, we can get rid of the nativist politicians who write these laws. When we vote, we can get rid of the politicians who appoint judges that uphold racist or unjust laws. The power is in our hands and we will make the difference.
Round Up: Supreme Court Hearing Tomorrow on the Constitutionality of Arizona’s Anti-Immigrant Law, SB 1070 by Mahwish Khan on 04/24/12 at 6:28 pm
On Wednesday (tomorrow), the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in United States v. Arizona, a debate that is focused on SB 1070’s constitutionality. In case you need a reminder, SB 1070 was an anti-immigrant law that set the precedent for others, such as Alabama’s notorious HB 56 and Georgia’s HB 87.
Jeanne Butterfield, Eliseo Medina from SEIU, and others talk about the implications that the Supreme Court’s decision could have in the United States:
From U.S. News and World Report, Jeanne Butterfield talks about the effects that such a law would have on the country:
Other nations would retaliate and treat U.S. citizens unfairly as they travel, work and study abroad. Citizens and immigrants alike would flee from one state to another, seeking freedom from discriminatory laws. Businesses would leave states where their workers and visiting foreign managers were subject to intrusive police demands for “papers.”
The United States could not survive as two nations—one slave, one free. Neither can the United States accommodate two sets of immigration laws—one that requires the Department of Homeland Security to enforce the laws that Congress enacts, and the other that requires all of us, citizens and immigrants alike, to “show me your papers.”
Though pandering politicians claimed they were merely “enforcing our laws,” these measures deter the work of local prosecutors and law enforcement officers because they destroy community policing and erode the ability to investigate violent crimes. That is the opinion of two of the last three state attorneys general from Arizona — one Democrat and one Republican — along with 42 additional former attorneys general from 27 states and the District of Columbia who filed a brief with the Supreme Court against SB 1070.
As the Supreme Court weighs the legal arguments, we must ask how a foolhardy law that legitimizes racial profiling, discrimination and harassment reached the court. Why do conservatives find it acceptable to interrogate and detain people just because of the way they look or speak?
If the U.S. Supreme Court fails to strike down the Arizona law, it will give state after state carte blanche to pass its own version of this wrongheaded law. The country will wind up with a mishmash of varying policies, mostly based on the fantasy that 12 million people, some with longstanding ties and U.S.-born children, are going to pack up and leave.
Brewer argues that it was failure at the federal level that created the illegal immigration problem. And she’s right.
However, only federal action can fix this problem. And on this point, the U.S. Supreme Court must unequivocally set the states straight.
As the Court hears arguments at the legal level, I’d like to share my thoughts from the perspective of a small business owner. I may not be an expert on constitutional law, but I know a thing or two about small businesses and local economies. And I can say this: laws like Arizona’s SB 1070 are bad for small businesses, bad for our local economies, and bad for the country.
On top of that, a lot of the customers who shop at my flea market are immigrants, too. It’s probably 30 percent of the crowd on any given day. Cut any small business’s customer base by 30 percent and I can tell you where it’s going: out of business.
Where the Public Really Stands on Immigration and Arizona’s SB 1070 by Frank Sharry on 04/24/12 at 5:18 pm
With the Supreme Court set to hear arguments for and against Arizona’s anti-immigration law on Wednesday, April 25th, we turn to another court for its ruling—the court of public opinion. In advance of tomorrow’s proceedings, America’s Voice Education Fund analyzed how immigration and SB 1070-type laws are play out among the American people. The results might be surprising for many observers.
Politicians are often confused about where the public stands on the issue of immigration reform. While polls show support for state-based immigration laws, there is even stronger support for federal, comprehensive reform. How is this possible, and why? And do politicians have to choose between courting Latino voters and the general public when they stake out an immigration position, or is there clear common ground?
A new polling roundup released today by America’s Voice Education Fund analyzed public opinion ahead of this week’s Supreme Court argument on the Arizona anti-immigration law, SB 1070. We found two key points: 1) To Latinos, the fastest growing voting demographic, Arizona’s law is both divisive and motivating; and 2) Overall, voters want action, but prefer comprehensive immigration reform.
First, for Latinos, Arizona’s law is both discriminatory and motivating. When Arizona’s SB 1070 became law in 2010, it received major attention in the national news—both in English and in Spanish. For the Latino community, it became a symbol of the anti-immigrant and anti-Latino sentiment that has infected politics in recent years:
In May of 2010, 81% of Arizona Latinos opposed the law according to an NCLR-Latino Decisions poll, and in November2010, 74% of Latinos across the country were opposed, including 65% strongly opposed, according to Latino Decisions.
In November 2010, after months of news coverage over SB 1070, Republican opposition to the DREAM Act, and anti-immigrant campaigning by many candidates, 60% of Latino voters told Latino Decisions that immigration was “the most important” or “one of the important” issues in their voting decisions for the mid-term elections.
And, SB 1070 will be a motivating factor for Latinos in 2012. Dr. Gary Segura, a professor of political science at Stanford and principal at Latino Decisions, told my colleague Maribel Hastings, that regardless of the outcome of the case, SB 1070 will have political implications in both the short-term and long-term. He said, “If SB 1070 is upheld, Latinos will be inflamed, Republicans will embrace it and Latino turnout and enthusiasm for the election will go up. If SB 1070 is struck down, largely because the president authorized the Justice Department to sue, the president gets the benefit of all of that and you can expect Republicans to denounce the Court and to say predictably awful things about Latinos. So it’s kind of good for Obama either way.”
So, then, what about other voters?
Again, voters want action, but prefer comprehensive immigration reform. When asked about state-level immigration reforms like SB 1070, a majority of Americans are initially supportive. But research shows that this simply speaks to their firm belief that they immigration system is broken and that someone needs to take action to fix it. Larger majorities are in favor of balanced, federal laws like the DREAM Act and comprehensive immigration reform that represent a real solution to immigration challenges instead of get-tough crackdowns.
In a series of national polls taken in the months after SB 1070 was passed, a slim majority of Americans supported the law—but a larger majority supported comprehensive immigration reform, including a path to legal status for the undocumented. This includes polls taken by the New York Times/CBS in May 2010 (64% supported comprehensive immigration reform; 51% said SB 1070 was “about right”); AP/Univision in May 2010 (59% supported comprehensive immigration reform; 42% supported SB 1070); and NBC/MSNBC in May 2010 (65% supported comprehensive immigration reform; 61% supported SB 1070).
Even in Arizona, a July 2010 Arizona Republic poll found that 62% of voters supported comprehensive immigration reform, while only 55% supported SB 1070. In addition, a poll conducted by Lake Research Partners for America’s Voice/America’s Voice Education Fund in summer 2010 found that an overwhelming 84% of voters who support Arizona’s law also support comprehensive immigration reform.
Ultimately, Americans think immigration policy should be made by the federal government, not by the states. That’s the legal issue the Supreme Court will be deciding. As the Lake poll found, a majority of people who support SB 1070 do so because “the federal government has failed to solve the problem.” By the same token, however, 56% percent said that immigration should be dealt with at the federal level while only 22% said it should be dealt with by the states.
When voters learn the economic, societal, and legal costs associated with anti-immigration state laws, support declines. Even a July 2010 Rasmussen poll of Arizona voters found that 46% believed passing SB 1070 had had a negative impact on the state’s image; 40% said it had a positive impact.
The numbers are actually crystal clear: Americans want a Federal fix to our broken immigration system, not a state-by-state patchwork of immigrant harassment laws like SB 1070. As the U.S. Supreme court takes up Arizona’s “show me your papers” law tomorrow, our nation’s leaders should take note: this is more than just a Latino issue, it’s an American issue.
New York Times Op-Ed: Deporting Parents Detrimental to Kids by Van Le on 04/24/12 at 11:12 am
Currently, there are an estimated 5,000 U.S citizen children lingering in foster care due to the detainment or deportation of their parents.
Deportation policy in the US is supposed to focus on “violent offenders and people convicted of crimes; not families, not folks who are just looking to scrape together an income.” A New York Times op-ed from over the weekend, however, illustrates how often this is not the case:
From January to June 2011, Immigration and Customs Enforcement removed 46,486 undocumented parents who claimed to have at least one child who is an American citizen.
In contrast, in the entire decade between 1998 and 2007, about 100,000 such parents were removed. The extraordinary acceleration in the dismantling of these families, part of the government’s efforts to meet an annual quota of about 400,000 deportations, has had devastating results.
Research by the Urban Institute and others reveals the deep and irreversible harm that parental deportation causes in the lives of their children. Having a parent ripped away permanently, without warning, is one of the most devastating and traumatic experiences in human development.
These children experience immediate household crises, starting with the loss of parental income. The harsh new economic reality causes housing and food insecurity. In response to psychological and economic disruptions, children show increased anxiety, frequent crying, changes in eating and sleeping patterns, withdrawal and anger.
In the long run, the children of deportation face increased odds of lasting economic turmoil, psychic scarring, reduced school attainment, greater difficulty in maintaining relationships, social exclusion and lower earnings. The research also exposes major misconceptions about these parents.
First, statistics about those who were deported in 2011 show that 45 percent were not apprehended for any criminal offense. Those who were, were usually arrested for relatively minor offenses, not violent crimes…
Finally, our studies in New York City and elsewhere show that these parents are extremely dedicated to their children’s well-being and development. Undocumented parents typically work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week, at the lowest of wages. Deporting them worsens the already precarious lot of their children.
The op-ed goes on to profile Sara Martinez, one example of the all-too-many immigrants who shouldn’t be detained but are. Martinez is an immigrant from Ecuador who has a US-citizen daughter, has learned English, has never broken a law, and has always paid her taxes. She was arrested in January 2011 when border patrol agents boarded a bus she was traveling on in Rochester (with her daughter) and asked her for identification. She’s applied for prosecutorial discretion three times and been denied without explanation, though she clearly meets the deportation guidelines of a person who does not deserve to be deported. And though her cases is still pending, and Martinez is now back with her daughter at home, the six-year-old girl now suffers from nightmares, has trouble sleeping and eating, and constantly fears the “police” will come take away her mother for good.
As the Times writes, “The United States should not be in the business of causing untold hardship by separating children from the love and care of their hard-working parents.”
PBS Documentary Reveals Border Patrol Officers Tasing Immigrant Man to Death by Mahwish Khan on 04/23/12 at 6:23 pm
A horrifying video of a man being tasered to death by Border Patrol officers is the latest in the series of controversies facing this often out-of-control branch of the Department of Homeland Security. Watch the video:
La Opinion, one of the nation’s largest Spanish language newspapers, editorialized about it over the weekend, and compares it with another horrifying event in civil rights history:
The dark video of a man lying on the floor while a group of police officers surrounds him and Tasers him is horrifyingly similar to one from 20 years ago, which we have remembered a lot lately because of the upcoming anniversary of the Los Angeles riots.
We think it’s appropriate to compare the images of Rodney King’s beating with the new images of a dozen Border Patrol agents surrounding Anastasio Hernández Rojas, a Mexican migrant worker caught trying to enter the country illegally near San Diego on May 28, 2010.
Of course, there are some differences. Rodney King survived the blows, while Hernández Rojas, 42, died as a result of the blows, kicks and electric shocks he endured that night. The San Diego medical examiner ruled the death a homicide.
Hernández Rojas had previously been deported, and had methamphetamines in his blood. Rodney King also had drugs in his system when he got arrested. However, the police protocols that are generally followed in a civilized country with laws set limits on the use of deadly force, especially when there are alternatives.
Last year, Alan Bersin, commissioner of Customs and Border Patrol (CBP), admitted during a public hearing that the rapid growth of his agency’s staff has been to the detriment of their quality.
Between 2004 and 2010, the number of Border Patrol agents more than doubled. The staff is younger and less experienced, and their number has made it harder to conduct the required background reinvestigations every five years. As a result, there have been numerous corruption cases.
Here’s more about how it unraveled:
On May 28, 2010, 24-year-old Ashley Young was on a pedestrian bridge along the San Diego-Mexico border when she heard a man below crying out for help. In a nearby U.S. Customs and Border Protection holding area, Young saw what she says was a man on the ground being beaten and tased by agents. She found the scene so troubling that she took out a camera and hit “record.”
The piece is now a part of a documentary called “First Look: Crossing the Line” which aired on PBS last Friday.
Customs and Border Patrol have been involved in a number of scandals recently. As we’ve previously written, in March last year, the agency was instrumental in deporting a four year old US citizen back to Guatemala. A month later, we reported that a Los Angeles musician was tasered into a coma by an Arizona border patrol agent. And now, here’s another atrocity to add to their list.
Join Our SB 1070 Social Media Rapid Response Team! by Frank Sharry on 04/23/12 at 4:20 pm
This week, all eyes will once again be on SB 1070. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on the Arizona law and will soon decide whether to strike it down forever, or open the door to Arizona laws across the country.
Exactly two years ago today, Governor Jan Brewer signed Arizona’s now-infamous “show me your papers” anti-immigrant legislation — SB 1070 — into law.
SB 1070 is an attempt to purge the state of Latino immigrants. Fortunately, most parts of the law have been blocked by lower courts. Nonetheless, other states, like Alabama, followed suit crafting laws that go even further. Now it’s up to the Supreme Court to decide whether or not to legalize discrimination and harassment.
It’s hard to overstate the magnitude of this moment for the civil and human rights of immigrants in America as well as of millions of Latinos, Asians, and other minorities. And, yet, many of our friends and relatives don’t know this case is happening, let alone how widespread its impact will be.
We need to make sure the Court, the media, and our members of Congress know what’s at stake with this Supreme Court decision. We’re asking people to join our SB 1070 Rapid Response Team:
If the Court sides with Arizona, it will be nothing short of devastating. It would clear a path for Arizona to start enforcing the worst aspects of its law, and for states across the country to pass their own Arizona and Alabama copycat laws. It would legalize racial profiling in order to pursue an ugly strategy of mass expulsion.
We fought back in Arizona. We’re still fighting back in Alabama. But the future of these bills — and all copycat bills in the future — will be decided by the Supreme Court. And the oral argument will be heard Wednesday, April 25th.
On Wednesday, we need to be prepared to spread the truth about the dangers of laws like SB 1070 and HB 56. Help us get the word out on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter.
Click here to join our social media rapid response team:
CAD Walk 2012: Reaching Your Dream Takes Courage by Guest Blogger on 04/23/12 at 12:41 pm
We’ve been publishing a series of posts from the DREAMers of the Campaign for an American DREAM. Last month, they set off from San Francisco to begin a 3,000-mile, 8-month+ walk to Washington, DC to call attention to the DREAM Act and the need for immigration reform.
As we left the house and headed to the airport, silence had taken over, afraid of what was to come. As it began to rain I saw tears slowly roll down my mother’s face because I was leaving the nest for the first time, and heading to a place where she could no longer protect me from harm. A mother is a child’s first true best friend, and as many know I have a bad case of the mamitis, meaning I can sometimes be joined at the hip to my mother.
April 10, 2012 was my last day in the Bay Area. As I sat at the Oakland Airport waiting to board the plane I began to reflect on my lasts. My last night kissing and saying goodnight to my parents, my last night sleeping in my room, my last time making my bed, my last good morning to my dog, my last time walking out the door, the last time I would hug my Mami and Papi.
I know this journey will be emotional, physical, and mentally demanding, but I also know this journey is one that needs to be made in order unite communities of all cultures and diversities across the nation in order to empower them to fight for justice. Courage is a quality which DREAMers across the nation should find within themselves and help others find. In a poem by Caroline Kent, “Reaching Your Dream Takes Courage,” she says:
Courage is admitting that you’re afraid and facing that fear directly. It’s being strong enough to ask for help and humble enough to accept it.
Courage is standing up for what you believe in without worrying about the opinions of others. It’s following your own heart, living your own life, and settling for nothing less than the best for yourself.
Courage is daring to take a first step, a big leap, or a different path. It’s attempting to do something that no one has done before and all others thought impossible.
Courage is keeping heart in the face of disappointment and looking at defeat not as an end but as a new beginning. It’s believing that things will ultimately get better even as they get worse.
Courage is being responsible for your own actions and admitting your own mistakes without placing blame on others. It’s relying not on others for your success, but on your own skills and efforts.
Courage is refusing to quit even when you’re intimidated by impossibility. It’s choosing a goal, sticking with it, and finding solutions to the problems.
Courage is thinking big, aiming high, and shooting far. It’s taking a dream and doing anything, risking everything, and stopping at nothing to it make it a reality.
Coming out as an undocumented student and leaving everything behind, I felt fear and anxiety — but I also found the courage to show others that I exist, have a voice, and will no longer remain in the shadows. I encourage you all to join us in the largest civil right rights movement of our time and unite with us to pass the Dream Act.