Define American

Transcending politics through a new conversation

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ALL STORIES

  • From Colombia to the United States Congress

    | Cesar Henao

    In 1986, Cesar Henao was only eight years old and living in a small, Colombian town called Pereira, in the Andes Mountains. At the time, Colombia was marked with pockets of extreme violence, culminating in the assassination of four presidential candidates during the 1990 election. Colombia was quickly turning into a hotbed of civil war, dominated by drug cartels. Within the neighborhood of Barrio Kennedy, he was raised by…

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  • Not without my daughter

    | Anonymous

    I came to America in May 1985. I was 12. My father, my grandparents and I came for my Aunts wedding. After spending the summer as a tourist it was time for me to go home. I didn't. It was explained to me that I would be staying and would be living in Chicago with my aunt. As far as I knew my aunt adopted me so I can…

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  • Broken Families

    | Anonymous

    The father of my son was deported a week after our child was born. I love him more than any man I've ever met in my life.

    His crime? Getting a flat tire. Yes, he was here without documents but he was here to try and make a better life. And if people actually knew anything about how challenging the immigration process is, when living in poverty every…

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  • Who is the American?

    | Anonymous

    While I was born in this country, many of my friends and teammates on my soccer team were not. There are thousands of hard-working Americans who put in every effort to support American ideals and follow the laws to the letter. On the other hand, there are also thousands of kids who are naturalized citizens who become involved in drug dealing, degradation of women, and fighting for no good…

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  • White, male, and a retired navy chief petty officer

    | Gregg Martin

    I am 52 years old, white, male, and a retired navy chief petty officer. Although always aware of the need for change in our country’s immigration system, my interest started becoming acute after I heard about the Bracero Program that started at the beginning of World War II and lasted until 1964. The program came about when the United States approached Mexico for help during the critical labor shortage…

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