Three values that seem to transcend all cultures are that of respecting one’s parents, working hard, and achieving an education. Despite doing all of these things, Mariano Cardoso is about to be penalized.
At the age of two, Cardoso was brought into the United States by his parents. As a child, he had no choice in the matter. While living here he has worked in order to pay for his education at Capital Community College, where he had planned to complete his Associate’s Degree in Engineering at the end of this semester. After living in the United States for twenty years, he is now facing deportation.
On Monday, about 25 activists gathered in front of 450 Main Street — the location of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services — to protest the return of Cardoso to “his country,” Mexico, where he lived for only the first two years of his life. Cardoso’s supporters called for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency to grant him amnesty, or at least defer the deportation until he has gained his degree. Such amnesty is not unprecedented. In 2010 a Harvard undergraduate who had been detained for his status as an undocumented immigrant was granted permission to remain in the United States. Like Cardoso, the Harvard student entered the United States with his family when he was a child.
Today’s protest was organized by Stop the Raids, an organization at Trinity College.
Contrary to other reports in the news media, activists included but were not exclusively students.
Reprinted with permission of Kerri Provost, author of the blog RealHartford.
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