I never touch on politics because, frankly, I’m never confident enough to think I have all my facts straight. Once I hit college, all political talk just sounded like contradictions. Everyone sounded the same or maybe I just couldn’t grasp the lingo faster than the candidates could flip flop what they just said on live news. Years would pass and every candidate would promise their country better lives. While this was going on in the background, I saw my father and my brother become citizens. My eyes still tear up when I see my father’s smile in the picture they took of him and my brother passing their citizenship tests. My father looked so proud and so happy. I am not one to ever discredit anyone, especially my family members but I know the reason he had the opportunity to become a resident in the first place was because of me.
My parents came to the UNITED States illegally many years ago from Ecuador but before they did, they had my brother. Both my mom and dad wanted to come to the U.S. to better, not only their lives, but for my brother as well. Then in 1987, I was born. I was born during a huge blizzard at the end of January. Except for the time I visited Ecuador when I was a year old, I had never left the country. The U.S. was all I knew. I grew up with A.C., I grew up with Barbies, I got roller blades for my birthday, my dad got me a guitar, I went to private school all the way until I graduated High School. I danced to Madonna, I would watched Saturday morning cartoons. Hell, I learned English faster than I did Spanish and yet, today, August 26, 2015, there are people out there who don’t believe I should be a citizen.
Some people say I shouldn’t be a citizen, they refer to me as something else instead. They call me an Anchor Baby. What’s worse is that these people are proud to call me that. To get my point across on how much that word offends me, is simple. Go to an all black community and shout, “YOU’RE A NIGGER.” THAT’S how offensive I find that word. I never even took offense when someone called me a “spic.” Maybe it was my ignorance to think n* wasn’t that bad, maybe I became numb to it but the moment I heard Anchor Baby, it was as if someone punched me in my solar plexus – knocked the air right out of me. I get it now. NOW, I get it. I understand how the black community can feel a slap to the face whenever they hear that word being said to them. It’s not right and it will never be okay.
Being an American is all I’ve ever known. Yes, I do realize the U.S. does has its own issues, it’s not perfect, it doesn’t have any shame for breeding Miley Cyrus, the world knows we are fucked up but I know enough to say I am proud to have been born here, gone to school here, be in total debt for going to college here. I’m lucky. I’m luckier than my brother because I didn’t have to jump through extra hoops to go to school. My parents loved us. Both my parents worked their hands to the bone. They both worked in factories and the both moved up. Some people may think they didn’t because my mom is a housekeeper while my dad does maintenance and security but these people didn’t see how my parents were treated at those shitty places. My mom worked for as long as I could remember and always, made us dinner every night. She had a cold? Didn’t matter, she cooked. She had a migraine? Didn’t matter, she cooked. My father worked hard and still had time and patience to take us to the beach, lakes, Florida, parks, anywhere you can think of because he loved us.
My parents were honest people who, indeed, gave my brother and I everything they didn’t have. We knew our parents worked for us so much so we wouldn’t tell them the expensive toys we wanted as children because we knew they would work extra hours or skip a meal at work so they could save money just so we could have the expensive toys that I, without a doubt, would break within a week. My parents wanted to become citizens for years and the one time they thought they could trust someone to do it for them, the scumbag ended up stealing their money. I became their safest option. Once I became 21, the paperwork began and before I knew it, both became residents. My father studied English for years, took night classes, and studied for the citizenship test. I had no doubt in my mind, he was going to pass. The Monday came for him to take it and he passed. They gave him a little American flag and his document. I don’t think I have ever been prouder of my dad. My mother is due to take her test soon.
My parents worked hard their whole lives, gave my brother and I the best they could with what little they had so how does your parents differ from mine? People are so quick to jump on immigration and shout to us, “Go back to where you came from!” and these are the same people who went to school and read the same history books I did. Excuse me, wasn’t it an immigrant to came here and said, “This is all ours now. Give me your land and your resources and get to stepping!” I don’t hear your ancestors complaining because if it wasn’t for THAT thieving immigrant, NONE OF YOU would be here. The difference between that immigrant and my parents: They didn’t steal, they earned what they had. Before you argue, “Immigrants are stealing jobs.” Please, dunk your hand in your own filthy toilet. Clean your own kitchen. Hire a horny 16 year old kid to take care of your baby. Or better yet, spend hundreds of dollars for “legal” citizens to do these tasks. Immigrants do the jobs that no one wants to. I’m proud of what my parents went through and where they are now because they are honest, hardworking Ecuadorians who taught my brother and I to work hard, be honest, and be good people.
What makes you better than me? What makes me a citizen? What makes your parents hard work different than my parent’s hard work?
Stop bullying my parents. Stop shaming them for being born in another country and wanting them to give their kids better lives. STOP SHAMING ME FOR HELPING THE ONLY TWO CANDIDATES WHO PROMISED TO GIVE ME A BETTER LIFE AND ACTUALLY DELIVERED!!