I am the founder of Wheeler High School’s Immigration Advocacy Organization and I created it on November 11, 2019. The purpose of the organization is to educate students about America’s naturalization process and spread awareness about ways politicians can make it more challenging for immigrants to become citizens. Wheeler is a diverse school filled with students from all over the world and my organization is there to give hope to the ones struggling with citizenship and encourage others to find their own voice. My mission for the organization is to collect hygiene items and supplies for ICE Detainees, donate them to an organization that will make sure the supplies reach ICE Detainees. I hope my Immigration Advocacy Organization will inspire students to take action on issues they are passionate about and make a difference in those in need. Students will benefit from being the change inside of school and make a difference outside of it as well.
On December 11, 2019, I delivered this speech to a group of people at an event featuring human rights activist Magdaleno Rose-Avila. My intention for presenting my speech to the people was to spread light on immigration issues and how fear leads to discrimination. The Magdaleno Rose-Avila event was based on social equality, immigration rights, and discrimination in communities. I believe it was my obligation to speak up for what I believe is right and therefore, discussed the actions I took to overcome these obstacles.
United We Stand: We are one and there is strength in numbers
by Ashleigh Ewald
Immigration has been a part of society for centuries. Who is there to stop the flow of immigrants?
We see people to this day cringe at the word “immigrant” yet this is a country built on immigrants. This a nation that others see as a way to start a new life and hopefully flourish into something new.
But no, we have elected officials purposely stumping immigrants from legally becoming citizens because of their financial status.
We must protest and speak up for all regardless of unjust laws that may not impact us.
Some don’t care about others’ suffering.
Why? Because it’s not them.
But once it happens to those people, then they care.
Think about that…
That’s society today. Some don’t care about what happens to others because of the lack of sympathy.
That is how humanity begins to lose compassion for each other.
Slowly we, mankind, will have hearts filled with hate for each other because of fear.
Fear of what is different. People fear what they are not used to and hate what they are afraid of.
Spreading fear is a way politicians have won voters. By implementing it on the people.
But it’s not too late. We can always change and continue to improve.
But there is a way. We can care about each other and push for more policies to protect discrimination towards race, religion, immigration, LGBTQ, and our lifestyles.
We must urge political officials to protect people in general and help those in need.
It’s not giving someone our hard work, it’s just lending a hand.
A helping hand that could help change someone’s life and encourage them to do better.
There are immigrants who come to the U.S. seeking citizenship in a legal way. However, there are politicians that want to stump the process by making more requirements.
Requirements such as, not allowing immigrants into this country unless they can stand on their own. Denying green cards to the immigrants who need assistance from the government. Trying to pass a bill making it so “illegal” kids have to suffer for their parents’ actions by not being able to attend public schools.
If we are working to limit illegal immigration then why are we making it harder for people to become legal permanent residents and citizens?
There are people who come to this country with nothing, in hopes of seeking a better life.
But then over time, they work very hard to make something out of themselves and eventually get to experience the “American Dream.”
I do not support immigrants coming to this country illegally. They must come in the correct way.
However, it’s not right for federal politicians to make it harder for immigrants to obtain citizenship.
I am asking for immigration policies to be protected and to stop those who intentionally want to make it more difficult for immigrants to legally become citizens through a naturalization process.
Ashleigh, 17, attends Wheeler High School and is in the 11th grade. Her dream is to become a U.S. Senator and motivational speaker.