Dear Century College students,

Dear Century College students,

It seems to me that a new atmosphere has come to our campus. Even though, the college had made public that its campus it has a welcoming environment to all students, a percentage of students feel afraid and unwelcome. For this atmosphere to change we must create among students a sense of unity, understanding of others culture, and to see each other as one. It is important to focus in humanize immigrants. For this to be possible, we have to learn from our past. The way US history is taught in some sense is wrong and has to change.

The way how people demonize immigrants lacks knowledge of past and present. Other than Native Americans and Latinos, the rest of us immigrate to this continent. For the same reason as many refugees; and others do which is to have a better life and more opportunities. Let’s made this ambiguous argument more clear. When we heard politician saying that “Mexico is not sending their best” and when they use the term “radical Islamic terrorism” is the start of demonization of a certain population. This kind of language fuels hatred and ignorance because all Latinos became Mexicans in the eyes of nationalist Americans and all Muslim became terrorists. We must see how each culture and ethnicity influences the way of US life. This melting pot (diversity) made America great. Just imagine that in the 1600s, Native Americans referring to English settlers as not being their best from England. The first colonizers from Europe were not the winners in England that why they leave their land and everything they own to survive in another territory. Being the losers of England does not mean an insult to them rather than something beautiful because they stand up and emigrate to a new land and for that reason  they create (although through indigenous genocide) this country. This history is beautiful, but it is also beautiful when people from south of this artificial border do it (people from Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, the Caribbean, and South America).

About the statement “radical Islamic terrorism” it seems that Nationalist forgot about the home-growth terrorist that had bombed abortion clinics in the 1990s. They also forgot about the mass shooting (all of them US-born citizens). The ban on seven middle-eastern countries is unconstitutional and thanks to the courts now is block. Nationalists forget that the main hijackers during the September 11 attack in New York were Saudi Arabian born. Due to a few Muslims an entire religion have been punished, but the actions taking by American-born terrorists do not label all Americans as “radical terrorists.” Once again, the language use in the political arena creates the rise of hatred and ignorance.

Let’s made clear that Native Americans are the rightful owners to this land and yet, they are the most repressed minority in the US. Other than the Native Americans, Latinos are the second owners to this land because they are the creation of a mix-blood between Indigenous and European settlers.

The recent actions taking by the present administration on immigration has shown a big misunderstanding on how America is seen abroad. Demonizing people, in this case Muslims and Undocumented Immigrants is a big remainder that history repeats itself. The hard language use today has been used in the past from the 1930s to 1960s, and even to the 2000s. It is clear that is up to us, the new generation, to come up with a solution in order to change these actions against minorities. A change in the perspective on how to see history can help us to create an inclusive and diverse country.

And the list can go on, but the purpose of this open letter is to create unity among students from different cultures and ethnicity. We can differ in many norms and values, but at the end we nourished the same important concept of all humanity which is “family.”

In order to united people, we must start changing the way we see our past and how we teach history. Moving forward, it is important to interact we others. After Trump’s announcement of his executive order on immigration and on Muslim ban, entire communities started to worry about the future, but fortunately part of the US society brighten and began to protest this actions, that was amazing to see I made us feel that we still have people in favor to a diverse US. They come out and talk about their feelings.

I am a student here at Century, I am a Mexican, I am an American, I am an immigrant, I am a Hispanic and this cannot be change by putting a wall in the border or a ban in seven predominant Muslim countries. Students here at Century will stand up too. We will show our nation and politicians that we are bigger than their agenda. Please, if you are one of our immigrant allies you can help our fellow immigrant scholars by talking to them and by let them know that they are welcome here. Adding that as students we must share are stories and our connections as humans. We, students at Century are always will stand together, regardless of political ideology or color of skin. Unity will be our present and our future. I believe that unity can impact our planet in a better way.

Please, connect and share with an immigrant (undocumented, refugee, or international student).

Sincerely,

Leonel Mejia

“Built bridges not walls”