Security and authority
So what are you going to do now?
I don’t know. If I stay here, well, that would be better, but it would be turning my back on my kids. And I cannot do that, because they’re my life. But if I try to go back and they catch me and they keep me in detention for a year, well, I don’t want that either, because then I won’t be able to be with my kids either. So I don’t know, I don’t know what I’m going to do.
The “piangüa” route started as an alternative source of income. In the beginning people were buying ‘piangüa to export to Ecuador. We started to look for a better solution, to open new paths in this business by ourselves, to make it our source of income. Then some people came here, they wanted to know how we harvest the piangüa, what the job looked like, and that is how we started it as an ecotourism activity.
I feel happy because I know I’ve got something to sell. When I need money, I know by recycling I’ve got something to sell. Any cash you get for your products is useful. It’s sad because the
government is going to make this illegal.
Me siento feliz porque sé que tengo algo para vender. Cuando necesito dinero sé que al reciclar tengo algo qué vender.
About 15 years ago, I came into the country with a tourist visa. I am now able to work because I have a work permit. Somebody was helping me with my legal documentation for residency but it turned out he was a fraud. I am now again doing the paperwork. This is why I cannot leave the country, I would not be able to come back in.
When they announced there was going to be an immigration reform, we were happy. But when we saw what they offered, well… I’m glad that the law will maintain families united, but those of us who have no family, even if we have been here a long time, then we’re left out. If I’m not married, I don’t qualify. My friend has also never married, and doesn’t have kids. And he’s says: “once again, we are left out”.
There is not a single day that goes by where I do not think about getting my permanent residency. This picture shows how I feel about the service of the immigration and citizenship. I feel that is a very unjust service. It’s a service that plays with the life and feelings of human beings… It is just politics playing with the feelings of human beings. They hurt you as if you were an enemy, so I am annoyed to think that there is a service that is supposed to be serving the laws and the people. I feel indignation.
If I go back to Guatemala, who knows how it will go? Here, I am undocumented, and there too. My brothers sent me my documents, and I went to the agency. I lacked a consular ID, birth certificate, a passport. I showed them my ID from the college on Broadway, but they didn’t give me anything. I went crazy because they wouldn’t give me anything. I was very sad, very depressed, abandoned, I lost my backpack, someone stole all of my documents.
Migrants are what the politicians take and use when they find it convenient, and when it’s not convenient they kick us out. So the Republicans are like the wind: they move when it’s convenient for them and it goes back and forth, and same thing with the Democrats. I don’t understand much of that. I would like to understand it better. I don’t need the visa or citizenship. If they gave it to me for next week then I would go but if they offer it and it’s going to take three years or six years then by the time I get it maybe it’ll be to enter legally back into Mexico.