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December 17, 2016
The Latinx identity assembly was broken into two parts, beginning with the audience watching a documentary on immigration. World language teacher Pedro Mendez introduced the film Harvest of Empire by saying, “This is what happens when the U.S. invades our countries.”
The documentary focused on Hispanic countries in Central America. It began with a scene that set the stage for the theme of the movie: immigrant protesters marching for equal rights. “We are America,” one protester said. The film continued on to tell the stories of immigration in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Guatemala and the the Dominican Republic. For the latter three countries, the documentary explained how American involvement had hurt the people’s way of life, and in the case of the Dominican Republic, had even set a civil war in motion. It posed the point that the immigrants from these countries were searching for a better life than they were able to get in a country that had been affected by foreign governments.
Following the film, a panel of made up of seniors Sophie Strassmann, Valentina Rojas-Posada, Ruby Kennedy and Sarah Dreyfus, junior Ana Merida, Mendez and two guest activists commented on the topic. They affirmed their beliefs that immigrants, documented or undocumented, should be respected and protected in this country.
“They’re human, too,” Merida said, speaking to the dehumanization that she felt occurred around the topic of immigration.
Rojas-Posada finished by bringing up the recent election and calling for unity and love in the future.