MEET GENERATION 1.5
THEIR IDENTITY IS A COMBINATION OF NEW AND OLD CULTURE AND TRADITION.
THEY EARN THE LABEL THE “1.5 GENERATION” BECAUSE THEY BRING WITH THEM CHARACTERISTICS FROM THEIR HOME COUNTRY BUT CONTINUE THEIR ASSIMILATION AND SOCIALIZATION IN THE NEW COUNTRY.
HOW DO YOU DEFINE AMERICAN?
THE TERM GENERATION 1.5 OR 1.5G REFERS TO PEOPLE WHO IMMIGRATE TO A NEW COUNTRY BEFORE OR DURING THEIR EARLY TEENS. MANY OF THEM SUCCESFFULY GO THROUGH OUR SCHOOL SYSTEMS.
Depending on the age of immigration, the community
into which they settle, extent of education in their native country, and other factors, 1.5 generation individuals will identify with their countries of origin to varying degrees. However, their identification will be affected by their experiences growing up in the new country. 1.5G individuals are often bilingual and find it easier to be assimilated into the local culture and society than people who immigrated as adults.
Many undocumented generation 1.5 students are honor students, athletes, student leaders, and aspiring professionals. But because of their immigration status, the majority of these young people are unable to access higher education and even if they do, they are not legally able to obtain employment upon graduation.
AL GENER R U AT LT IO U N IC
ITâ€™S TIME TO HAVE A REAL CONVERSATION ABOUT IMMIGRATION IN OUR COUNTRY. The DREAM Act emerged in response to the plight of thousands of immigrant students who, after growing up here, could not continue a normal life after graduating from high school or college because of the manner in which they entered the country â€” many of them when they were infants.
GE N FOR YEARS, 1.5 G HAS BEEN SILENT,
TERRIFIED OF SPEAKING OUT AND DEMANDING JUSTICE.
BUT NOW THE OUTRAGE OF BEING SILENCED OUTWEIGHS
THE FEAR OF BEING DEPORTED. IT IS TIME FOR 1.5G TO
LIVE WITHOUT FEAR.
ION AT R E
“THE SILENCE IS A BLANKET SO THICK IT LEAVES YOU GASPING FOR AIR.”
get a college degree or to serve the country in uniform — but are stuck in a paperwork trap that can’t be opened?”
“Many American students graduate from college and high school each year, and face a roadblock to their dreams: they can’t drive, can’t work legally, can’t further their education, and can’t pay taxes to contribute to the economy just because they were brought to this country illegally by their parents or lost legal status along the way,” Change.org said. The bill was in Congress in 2007 but it failed. On the occasion, The New York Times editorial board commented, “Who could be threatened, after all, by new high school graduates who were brought here by their parents, grew up in America, and yearn to
But the Senate’s message was like a speech from a prison warden in a bad juveniledelinquent movie:
YOU’RE ILLEGAL. YOU’RE GOING TO STAY THAT WAY. WE DON’T LIKE YOUR KIND. Yet many 1.5G youth don’t know anything other than english. The United States Census Bureau estimates that in 2000, 2.5 million undocumented youth under the age of eighteen were living in the U.S. 65,000 undocumented students graduate from U.S. high schools each year.
FOR MANY OF THESE KIDS, AMERICA IS THE ONLY HOME THEY’VE EVER HAD.
WE’RE TALKING ABOUT PEOPLE WITHOUT PAPERS
THE PROBLEM IS THAT G1.5 DOES NOT HAVE LEGAL STATUS AND CANNOT OPERATE AS PRODUCTIVE CONTRIBUTING MEMBERS OF SOCIETY.
ERNESTO is a second-year student at a University of California institution majoring in both Chicano studies and political science. In 1996, Ernesto, along with his mother and two brothers, immigrated to the United States to reunite with his three sisters. He is a first-generation college student raised by a single mother. Ernesto plans to attend law school and his ultimate dream is to serve his community as a member of the California State Assembly.
PAOLO is completing her associate of arts degree from a Southern California Community College and has been accepted to a University of California institution. She is hoping to attend in the fall so long as she is able to obtain financial support. Paola’s dream is to perform theatre while at the same time engaging closely with community arts programs. She was brought to the USA from Mexico at age four.
CARLA applied for and was accepted to speak at a Japanese American Citizens Lauge (JACL) Collegiate Leadership Conference in Washington D.C. Carla, decided to apply to speak because she saw it as her chance to “challenge the so-called ‘experts’ in areas of immigration and civil rights advocacy.” Most of her questions were met with “generalized statements reiterating the challenge in organizing the
CARLA IS AN UNDOCUMENTED STUDENT AND ACTIVIST WHO WAS BROUGHT TO THE U.S.A. FROM THE PHILIPPINES AT AGE 5. NOW SHE IS 22.
CARLA: YEAH, I TOOK THE BUS. GIRL 1: YOU TOOK THE BUS? ALL THE WAY FROM CHICAGO TO D.C.? WHY? CARLA: UM, BECAUSE I CAN’T FLY. GIRL 2: WAIT, WHAT REALLY? WHY NOT? CARLA: DID YOU READ MY BIO? I’M UNDOCUMENTED. GIRL 1 & 2: OH.
Asian Pacific Islander American community around immigrants’ rights.” The conversation ABOVE is one of the first conversations Carla had at the opening dinner of the conference. Something as easy and commonplace as buying a plane ticket to get across the country becomes an limiting obstacle for Generation 1.5.
TO READ MORE 1.5G STORIES, SUPPORT UNDOCUMENTED YOUTH, OR GET INFO VISIT DREAMACITIVST.ORG
SOURCES www.labor.ucla.edu/publications/reports/ Undocumented-Students.pdf www.dreamactivist.org www.thedreamiscoming.org http://faculty.deanza.fhda.edu/pattonEngResources/stories/storyReader$71 www.nytimes.com
PO P !
w w w. P O P z i n e . c o m
A ZINE ABOUT THE POSSIBILITIES OF PEOPLE
A ZINE ABOUT THE POSSIBILITIES OF PEOPLE
Published on Jan 4, 2012
A zine article about undocumented youth, the obstacles they face today, and how the DREAM Act can help both citizens and non citizens alike.