In Detention: Feb. 5, 2010
This is the latest blog post from a 27-year-old college graduate who ran a small construction clean-up company in Arizona until he was stopped by police for a traffic infraction in late summer of 2010. After Yogi (not his real name) was arrested and fingerprinted his information was shared with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He was then transferred from jail to ICE custody because he lacked proper immigration papers. Yogi has lived in the United States since 1990
I’m 27 years old, this is my first blog.
It’s odd to think I am writing it from a jail cell.
Although, I should mention that officially I am not a prisoner, I am a detainee. Much like the people held in Guantanamo, I suppose, but my charge isn’t terrorism. My main charge is not being a US Citizen.
My story is much the same as many kids who grow up in the US, Honor Roll K-12, captain of Football and Wrestling teams. Then off to college I went to learn and prepare how to master the “Real World”. Except my story is different, like the fact that I have been adopted twice or that I was born in Mexico.
The latter point drastically changes my current situation. It makes me, shall we say, susceptible to deportation from the country I grew up in. Maybe you didn’t know a detention center like this existed. I know I didn’t. And yet, here I sit within a maximum-security facility, where hundreds of ICE detainees are housed. And my hope is that my writing this blog will bring awareness to something that is very real.
From in here, this whole experience seems surreal, I like many of the men in here, don’t believe imprisonment should be the way about solving this migration issue. Although at the moment I have no solution either. Al I know is that in my cell alone, there are two men who have had their green cards for 24 and 30 years, respectively, after 5 years with permanent residency people are eligible to apply for citizenship, but after 20 you would think it should be automatic.
I guess that just is another question I would like to put out in the universe.
Regardless of what your view is on the subject, I am sure you believe there needs to be some kind of reform or solution. Unmistakably, I believe that there are too many families at stake not to give an opportunity to those hardworking individuals who have spent decades contributing to this country without status. How is it just for people to be ineligible, or have to wait 15 to 20 years, to become permanent residents after all those years of struggling here. Why do people have to be arrested and humiliated to have the opportunity of a work permit? In the respect I agree with many politicians and like other folks like to say, the system is broken.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to accept a system that will gladly throw anyone in jail for not being born in this country (U.S.) even if this country (U.S.) is all they’ve ever known as their home.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to exist as a character within my mind that sees differences in people according to the color of their skin to such a degree that I’ve not cared whether they are able to eat, have clean water to drink and/or a home to live in.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing a system that will throw a person in jail for an undetermined amount of time, walk away without questioning their acts and then claim we live in the land of the free.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing a system where people are so afraid of each other that they will turn each other in to authorities as being an ‘alien’ because in their ‘mind’ they think they’re having to pay someone’s way – instead of realizing that the only thing they’re paying for, is the ways of their own acceptance and allowance of a capitalistic money system that is set up to support only the rich.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing a system that takes pride in humiliating it’s people using our current world/money system.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing a system that supports the belief that incompatible cultures among us are being sewn with the seeds of cancer into the social fabric of society simply because of the difference in our skin color and our language wherein we’ve not seen/realized or understood that is through hate, anger, greed and spite that man has manifested cancer.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed a world/money system that puts immigrants and blue collar criminals in jail/prison for years on end, but does nothing to stop the white collar crime of lobbyist who daily manipulate the system and keep the elite of this world rich.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing a capitalistic system based upon the fact that I was ‘told’ it was the best for all, when clearly capitalism only supports the rich, while the majority are struggling in/as slaves to the current money system.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to Not educate and investigate for myself how an Equal Money system will support our world according to what’s best for all.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to fall for the lie that says ‘this land is your land’, ‘this land is my land’, when the fact is this land is earth and is here for everyone, not just those with money/power/greed.
I commit myself to show that All Life is created Equal and that No one is free until All are Free to exist here and support themselves as Equals.
I commit myself to show that in order to change our current money/world system requires that we Stop our nature as greed and stand together as a group in support of an Equal Money system.
I commit myself to show that through self-forgiveness human nature can change.
I commit myself to teaching children that life is about giving as one wishes to receive.