Immigrants Rights Rally
Updated: Apr 8, 2018
@ the State Capitol of Oregon
One Oregon put together a wonderful rally at the State Capital on January 14th 2017. Just a few days after snowmageddon hit Portland, hundreds braved the frigid temperatures to unite, voice support, and defy the, at the time, soon to be inaugurated Donald Trump.
I was lucky to interview one young student activist who was formerly undocumented and is now a proud DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) recipient giving back to her community.
Post rally Fatima shared her thoughts on the current threats facing immigrants in the United States and elaborated further on her commentary at the podium.
Question: You mentioned in your speech that its time for bold actions from our legislators, what type of bold actions are you talking about?
Fatima: We need a clear statement that [legislators] are going to stand with us, that they’re going to protect us, that they’re going to stand against Trump’s agenda of hate. We need clear actions referring to our policy and legislation. We need to know that they are going to be with us.
Question: You mentioned what legislators can do to stand with us. How can the community stand with you?
Fatima: As the community standing together as one and serving; getting connected with our local nonprofits, and even calling grassroots mobilization, writing letters. Just letting them know that we are here, that we are here to stay and that it’s time.
Question: In your speech you mentioned a looming threat, what do you feel is the biggest threat of Trump’s presidency?
Fatima: I think it’s the hate that he is sending. The [Trump supporters] feel that they can say hurtful and discriminating things to other humans and they loose that sense of love and humanness that brings us together. They think it’s just right and they have the approval to say hateful things. I feel like there is a divide within our community now and our nation in general.
Question: Have you experienced hateful speech?
Fatima: Growing up as an immigrant and as an undocumented student I faced various hardships because of the color of my skin, because of my immigration status.
Question: You said DACA has given you an opportunity to give back to your community, can you share a little bit about how you are giving back?
Fatima: Yes, so I am a student at Portland State University. I volunteer in various student groups such as MEChA and Las Mujeres. I also have an internship with CAUSA so daily I’m working with my community through civic engagement. With my local boys and girls club I serve in my community through volunteer work and through them I was named the 2016 youth of the year which means I’m shaping youth and I’m telling them my story and the importance of giving back.