On February 14, 2022 This is a different day in the immigrant community in the United States. Protests for immigration reform were expected in at least 24 cities, but there were no major demonstrations as hundreds of thousands took to the streets in the mid-2000s to press Congress and Gaza Bank.
In Washington, D.C., about 1,000 immigrants, mostly young people, gathered in front of the White House and raised their voices to the Chancellor. Joe Biden We need to increase the pressure on Congress to pass immigration reform.
But Congress is focusing on other things, and now, the legalization of millions of undocumented immigrants has been put on hold in the Senate, where Republicans say they will not give a vote and cannot guarantee the Democrats the minimum 50 needed to move forward. A reconciliation package regardless Approval of the Chief Adviser of the Upper HouseAttorney Elizabeth MacDonough.
In three attempts since September last year, MacDonough has rejected three democratic legislative bills, arguing that legalizing 6.5 million undocumented immigrants would increase the budget by about $ 130 billion over the next 10 years.
The call for a non-immigrant day celebration on February 14 has not been dated by traditional organizations such as the Los Angeles Coalition for Immigration Rights (CHIRLA), the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN), and UnidosUS (formerly La Rasa). ), Casa de Maryland or the Coalition for the Full Rights of Immigrants. It was done two or three weeks ago by a 23-year-old dictator.
“I saw that the issue of immigration reform was dying out and I thought we should renew it. Also, on February 14th, the day when gift items and consumption are on high sale, immigrants will be at home so the United States will take care of their absence,” said Carlos Eduardo Espina. TikTok Social Networking.
The campaign began nationwide from the first post. Within hours news was coming in from across the country in support of that call. Espina initially hoped the day would be a success, not only in Washington DC but also in Los Angeles, New York, Houston, Miami and Chicago.
Satisfied at the end of the day, but unanswered questions for now. “I do not know what happened,” Espina said. “I thought there was support, people were willing to shut down businesses, leave their children at home and take to the streets, but when you look at it, there were about 3,000 in DC (by their estimates), but in other parts of the country it was a few hundred or dozens.
At the end of the day on Monday, Espina says, “Many of those who attended the march were disappointed, and they invited us with regret from other parts of the country.” They notice something strange, they do not know what happened, and they wonder why the organizations and national leaders of the immigration movement did not go out with the people for immigration reform. “
Univisión Noticias spoke with activists in Houston, Miami and Los Angeles, all of whom agreed that despite the interest in participating and supporting the call, the number of participants was lower than expected.
“There were about 60 people in Miami,” one activist asked, keeping his name a secret. “We expected a lot, but some came. We went with them because it was our duty. We held a press conference and insisted that Congress re-discuss immigration reform and approve it,” he pointed out.
“The call was heard and we think people liked it, but it’s not something that made the decision a success. When the answers are found, we will support our community. And hope the material does not die. He was resurrected on February 14. That is the important thing,” he said. .
“I think we should give a lot of value to what Espina has done. He knows how to talk to people and his followers on social media feel represented. The community wants its leaders to support them. Maybe it’s not a huge step, but it’s a first step and an awareness call,” he said. He said.
Houston joined forces with ‘Immigrant Day’ to push for immigration reform
According to Francisco Moreno, executive director of the Federation of Mexican Associations in Los Angeles, Espina has become a new voice within the immigrant community joining the struggle for immigration reform.
“We were expecting a lot of people, but 500 people might have come here in Los Angeles,” he said. “But we take it as a preparation for May 1,” the date on which companies celebrated Non-Migrant Day for at least a decade, the day Labor Day is celebrated in other parts of the world, and in the United States. The first Monday in September.
When asked why they supported the call, but did not appear publicly with Espina before the events, Moreno said, “In general, we decide that any effort is good wherever it comes from. He is a young man who puts the issue at the national level (immigration reform), ”he says.
What activists did not mention was that Espina’s call did not use anything other than the Tic Tac Toe social network.
“I do not have the resources for them (national organizations) and logistics. The only desire in Congress is to do something to revive the debate, “said Dictoker.
Moreno says Espina “deserves all the love.” We must recognize that the endless new opportunities for immigration reform are going to be fought in this way.
Espina says her mother was deported from the United States before she was born and was born in Uruguay 23 years ago. “But now we are both American citizens.”
“Many of my friends are undocumented and I grew up around many with the same status. I saw many injustices around me, and my mother’s personal story touched me from an early age, helping in different ways, translating, teaching citizenship classes, and writing letters to immigrants detained in ICE prisons, including a friend, ”he says.
When the epidemic hit in 2020, he says, “I started talking about this (immigration reform) on social media.”
“All of this we have to use within our range, social networks are a tool, as well as personal communication. But networks have a certain power that old methods do not have. Now we have to continue to use them, “he said.
Asked if there would be new calls in the immediate future, Espina said the next step would be to organize a non-immigrant day on May 1, as Moreno noted. “It’s easy because it’s a Sunday,” says the social media activist now.
“This time there was a lot of publicity in the media. We hope that in the immediate future there will be a debate in Congress and a referendum on reform. In the meantime, we must continue to work, “he said.
Activists consulted by Univision Noticias acknowledge that Espina is the “iceberg of new young voices” appearing in the American immigrant community.
A video posted on the Tik Tok social network in broad daylight in front of the White House this Monday, at the end of this post, recorded more than 2 million people.
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