Define American

Transcending politics through a new conversation

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  • We are Americans

    | Anonymous

    I was born in Cananea, Sonora, Mexico, 45 years ago. I came illegally to this country following my husband and with a daughter in my arms 25 years ago. My daughter was illegal as well, my husband wasn't.

    25 years later I have six kids, my oldest daughter graduated from Mills College in Oakland, CA. My second and third daughters are currently attending NAU. My third daughter is…

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  • My Dreamer and I

    | Anonymous

    I met the love of my life in high school. We both played soccer and excelled at school. After he graduated he had plans to go to college and become an engineer. He even had a full ride to a major university!

    That was all taken away from him when officials discovered he was undocumented. Maybe that was the best thing though, because shortly after we started dating…

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  • Once Undocumented

    | Anonymous

    I had the comfort of coming here on a plane, but the discomfort from age 5 of living with the secret that I knew would wreck my family's life if it got out: that we were undocumented. We were blessed to get papers by the time I reached fourth grade, but we could have just as easily not have gotten them.

    Today I am a graduate from The…

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  • Illegal to be called "illegal"

    | Anonymous

    Hello, My name is Chante Padilla. I'm the wife of a wonderful man, and a mother to our beautiful daughter. A proud citizen of the United States. Meeting my "wonderful man" at the age of 10, now 25. I never would of known that our lives & future would be so complicated. My "wonderful man" was brought to California at the age of 2 from Mexico. Along with his…

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  • American by choice

    | Maria Comninou

    I consider myself a "real" American, although I was not born here. After I became a permanent resident, I made a rational choice to become an American. Unlike most, I do not owe my American citizenship to an accident of birth. I am not an "accidental" American. I chose to become an American citizen for two fundamental reasons: The written Bill of Rights; and The constitutional separation of church…

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