5 Matching Annotations
  1. Jul 2021
    1. Anne: You go back to Mexico and you got to college. Was it hard making that transition?Juan: Yes, it was. The thing is, since I knew I was going to come back I was determined to go back to college. Before I came back, I made sure that I went to the state’s—I got my high school diploma stamped by the state, by the Provo School District. I got a stamp, I got all my papers before I came back so that made it a lot easier for me. Because I know people who come back and want to go to college, but they can't because they didn't do what they had to do before they came back and then they just give up.Juan: They're like, "It's going to be so hard to get that, so I just don't want to do it." I thought of my future and I was like, "No, I've got to get this done," so I got it done. I came back, I put in my process of getting my high school diploma and all my years over there of studies renewed. Or how do you say it? Validated.Anne: Validated.Juan: Get it validated, and it did take six months but I got the answer back. Everything is good and I was able to go back to college. At the beginning it was hard, because obviously everything was in Spanish, and my Spanish wasn't that good in reading or speaking or even writing. It wasn't perfect, but I did manage to do my best, and at the moment, from the six semesters that I've been in college right now, I've only failed one class. That was in my first semester and it was history.Juan: Because, again, going back to the Spanish, it wasn't so good, that I wasn't able to pass the class. But now my Spanish is a lot better and, right now, I don't think I'm going to fail any classes because I'm set. In the beginning it was hard adapting to the classmates, to the culture and stuff like that, but I'm managing right now. I'm halfway through my career, I'm looking into different projects, like I mentioned, the Airbnb. I'm looking to finishing my career strong and start my quest as an entrepreneur.

      Return to Mexico, Challenges, Bureaucracy, Language; Feelings, Dreams

    1. Anne: Yeah.Ben: Them shelters can't possibly hold all them people, they can't. And so, all these people running around—they're running around the monument right now—laying there around. I see them laying around, the same people laying on the streets. But here in Mexico City, it's not that bad. You go to the border and the border cities where all along the Texas border, those are main dumping grounds for ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement]. All these border detentions that are on the border states, they're daily buses are driving and dumping people off. Detentions from up north, they wait until they fill up a plane, or planes, then they ship them. But here, they catch. It's every day they're dumping people. And there’s gotta be something done about that. I think that there's assistance for just about any and everything else. I do think that it would be in the best interest of the government to assist deportees that are coming back. It would probably save them a lot of money—it'd probably save them more to get them home and give them a little bit of cash, give them a bus ticket home to where they're from, and it would be a lot less expensive than all the chaos that's going on right now.Anne: Seems that the US also has really ignored the whole problem, the families that they're breaking up.Ben: Yeah.Anne: You've thought about that, in terms of US policy, ways that they can eliminate the hardship that your family is going through because you're here?Ben: Yeah.Anne: I mean not just the financial, emotional but everything. And it seems like it’s not even in the equation.Ben: Yes, that's true, that's not even in the equation. [Pause]. That's tough. But yes, I think [Pause] that [Pause] they're not looking at individual cases when looking at this immigration issue. I mean if they really, if the immigration person were really doing their job, then the judge did his job and really take the time to look at each individual case, some of these separations wouldn't happen. But they're not doing that, to me they're just trying to pile up numbers. I know many a case where…Just an example, one gentleman, taking care of his family, has residency, he's a legal resident. One DWI and it's over with, he's gone.Anne: He's a legal resident?Ben: A legal resident. One DWI and that's it, he's gone. And I've known of others that had up to three and they're still there. I know some that have felonies and they're still there. Then one DWI, that's not being fair. The biggest injustice I think is going after all these Dreamers and using the information that they filled out on their DACA paperwork to go track them down. I agree that there has to be some type of people should be picked up, but they're not chasing those people. They're going for the easy numbers because, you know what? Those guys they don't have paperwork where they can go pick them up, they’re not going to school here, going there. It's harder to catch them, so you know what? We can drum up 10-15,000 people right here, beef our numbers up. We got the addresses, let's just go get them.Ben: And that's kind of what they're doing, not really doing their job. Just to say that “We're doing something.” With 9/11, I remember that they, within the first few days, 20 something hundred arrests that they were attributing as terrorist arrests. But you know who they were picking up? They were picking up Mexicans most of them. It was not 20 something hundred Middle Easterners. But regardless, they were numbers. They had to show that they were doing something. But that's that [Chuckles].Ben: The US, there's a lot that they could be doing, because they can deport 100,000, but they know they gotta replace those 100,000 for the workforce. One thing I know is I know the ins and outs of labor in the US. That is one thing that I do know. And I do know that there's unwritten policies that look the other way, look the other way while we get this done. We need this done, look the other way. Hurricane Katrina was one, we had immigration, immigration was about the only police patrolling the area at the time and they weren't bothering anybody—it was hands off until they get this cleaned up. And once all the toxic clean-up was out of the way, then they started to enforce, but still not full force again.Ben: So, there's a lot to the government, part to blame there. Instead of locking them up, they should really create some type of labor program.Anne: People can come and go.Ben: People can come, instead of coming across and, to me, instead of somebody going to work over there and pay $6,000 to a coyote, they could pay $1,500 at a processing center to apply and get placed in a job by the US government legally. But you know what? US government don't wanna do that, because they want to keep them costs down. And so, does private business, they need to keep them costs down. It's like, would you like to pay $30 for a Big Mac? [Laughs].Anne: You’re saying that McDonald's is just using a lot of undocumented and paying them really?Ben: Well the whole concept of migrant labor, the migrant labor force, is to keep the cost of products down and housing as well. If it wasn't for migrant labor and this underground labor networks that are operating, a $250,000 house would've probably cost you a million. And a lot of people wouldn't be able to, a lot of people can't afford a $200,000 house [Chuckles].Anne: No. Well I thank you very much.Ben: Thank you all for coming, coming to help us out and spread the news.Anne: You’ve probably been asked this question, but do you consider yourself an American? A Mexican?Ben: You know, honestly deep inside, American. That's how I've always felt. But right now, after this happened, it's like have you ever, there was a book called The Man with No Country, are you familiar with that?Anne: Yeah.Ben: That's, when I was deported, that's the first thing that, that's what came to my mind, The Man with No Country, not here, not there, not accepted here, not accepted over there. And when I got here it's like, no paperwork, no drivers, no identification, and I had a harder time getting a driver's license, getting my voter registration—which is the main source of ID here—the toughest time here then I did getting ID in the United States. And I was illegal in the United States and I was able to, anything I needed, I could get over there. And here, I'm here, I had a hard time. It took me a few months.Anne: It's really too bad.Ben: Yeah. Kind of rough. I don't know if it had been easier here, in the big city, but over there it was pretty rough, hard getting around.Anne: Well, I wish you the best of luck.Ben: Oh, thank you—Anne: I think that you're, you think you're going to be fine, so I think you're going to be fine. And you must be very proud of your family, they seem really great.Ben: Oh, I am, they're going, they're moving forward, that was the purpose of heading that way.

      Reflections

    2. Ben: And so, we left, and we went to Acuña across from Del Rio (Texas) and then, "No, just wait for me across the bridge. I'll be right there.” So, "No, no no.” So, I got a taxicab straight across the bridge. But I had already had my Texas driver's license and social security card brought to me in case they questioned me, then I could say, "US.” And that's all I did, just told them I was a US citizen, they just…It wasn't like it is right now. Right now, even a US citizen is going to have trouble getting across the bridge [Laughs].

      Time in the US, Arriving in the US

  2. Jun 2021
    1. Luisa: I had to go through hell in order to get my paperwork done for school—through hell, and then I still had to do two years. If that was somebody else with a little bit less drive or a little bit less enthusiasm, they would've given up and they wouldn't have continued with their studies. They would've said, "Fuck it. Why? They're putting me against the wall. How am I supposed to do anything?” Anyone else for sure would've, and I know a lot of cases where they're like, "Dude, it's just too hard. It's too hard to keep going. They're asking me to do everything that I've already done, and what they're asking me to do is subpar compared to the education that I've had." So it's extremely discouraging.

      Reflections, Feelings, Discouragement

  3. Feb 2021