Define American

Using the power of story to transcend politics and shift the conversation around citizenship

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  • I am a DREAMER...well almost...

    | Anonymous

    Meet Gabriela. A DREAMER... well almost... She missed the age-at entry requirement by a couple of months.

    After reading her story, don't you think she more than deserves a shot too?

    "I, Gabriela Monico, hereby declare as follows: My name is Gabriela Monico. I am a resident of California. I was born in San Salvador, El Salvador. I came to the United States in November 2005 on…

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  • Done Dreaming

    | Esmy Jimenez

    My name is Esmy Jimenez. I was raised in a small town in Washington State known for agriculture and friendly people. I graduated from the local high school as the Senior Class President. I was in National Honor Society and enrolled in all the AP classes my school provided. I even ran on the cross country team and (attempted) to play tennis. On weekends I worked for a catering company…
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  • No Papers Necessary.

    | Anonymous

    My name is Pat. My first "American" family member got to these shores in 1621. His name is William Claiborne and there is a plaque dedicated to him in the church at Jamestown. However, the other half of my family is Irish. The Irish side of my family, while I am not certain, very likely arrived here without any papers since they fled here during the famine. So, in…

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  • I am an American, but I live in the shadows...

    | Anonymous

    In 1998, I met my immigrant husband in Chicago while I was in AmeriCorps and going to school. By that time, he had been in the US for almost 10 years--he had earned his GED, learned English, and moved up from his original position as dishwasher to become a kitchen manager. We fell in love. In 2002, we got married in his hometown in Mexico. We were told that petitioning…
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  • I Teach Americans. So What?

    | Anonymous

    While sitting at a scholarship pageant, I remember how an idyllic teenage girl explained that her dream was to become a teacher. I was a cynical teen in those days and so I rolled my eyes as her sweet, but very breathy voice tinkled the words, "I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way." I had to chew on the sides of…
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  • Pro-immigration means pro-growth

    | Anonymous

    I have an economics degree from one of Canada's best universities. I have a Master's degree from one of the USA's largest universities. Yet the money I have expended and the agony I have endured to legally stay in the US is an example of over-regulated, big government run amok. I work in the financial industry, I identify as an economic/fiscal conservative and as such, I believe in free trade…
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  • Firsthand Witness

    | Amarili Galvez

    I am a US citizen, born in America to a Cuban mother and Ecuadorean father, neither of whom had any problems gaining permanent residency when they first arrived here. I have been spared the tragic impotence felt by many when they cannot do the basic, everyday things the rest of us take for granted. By chance, my first boyfriend of 7 years didn't have his papers. It was my first…
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  • Accepting

    | Anonymous

    I grew up in a multicultural neighborhood. Black, white, Hispanic, you name it. My own ancestors came to the US between the early 1700s and late 1800s, but I have no quarrel with anyone who's arrived more recently. I'd like to see a clear and feasible path to citizenship for anyone who has been here 5 years or more. And I'd like to offer a one-way ticket OUT of here…
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  • A Real American

    | Anonymous

    A real American is someone who was born and/or lives in either North, Central, or South America. It should NOT just apply to those who were born and lives in the US.
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  • Love knows no borders

    | Anonymous

    My husband and I have been together for 9 years and have a 6 year old little boy together. I had moved away from home for a couple of years and met my husband who I instantly fell in love with. I believe that God took us both thousands of miles away from home to meet each other. That was the beginning of a beautiful life together. Beautiful but also…
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