Yo soy Joaquín,
perdido en un mundo de confusión:
I am Joaquín, lost in a world of confusion,
caught up in the whirl of a gringo society,
confused by the rules, scorned by attitudes,
suppressed by manipulation, and destroyed by modern society.
-Rodolfo Corky Gonzalez
I studied this poem in college and now it brings back a haunting eulogy in memory of Joaquin Luna. Joaquin Luna was 18 years old; a senior at Juarez Lincoln High in Mission, Texas. He felt that it was better to be dead than undocumented. His brother and mother heard the gunshot and ran into the bathroom, only to find him laying on the floor with a bullet hole in his head and blood dripping down from his suit and tie.
He had a dream and he wanted to be an engineer so that he could provide a better life for his mother. He had already created blueprints to the house he promised to build her. Now he’s gone and his death speaks to the broken immigration system that we live in. Our students are losing hope and our families are being torn apart by S-Comm and anti-immigrant legislation. In the past four years, the Obama administration has deported more than 1 million individuals, and still they have the audacity to try and harness the Latino vote. Nobody deserves our vote because only a few of our politicians deserve our respect.
“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
For our dreamers, keep fighting, and never lose that hope. Don’t feel alone and please don’t resort to suicide because we are here for you. We love you and support you in this endeavor and will help you attain your goals. You are loved and you are appreciated. Know that the words are hate are nothing more than words and insecurities that you need not absorb. Keep fighting because you can make a difference and your life is valuable to me and to all of us.
This is Joaquin’s essay that he wrote and we have received permission to post his essay on our site. We are all Joaquin and we will overcome this together.
Fulfilling a dream in waiting…
Essay By Joaquin Luna
Dedication, effort and hard work has always been with my family, all done for us children in order to survive in this world. At a young age we were taught to never give up in life and to always keep moving forward no matter the obstacles we face.
The toughest job I have ever done was picking asparagus off the fields, in Big Rapids, MI. I still remember the hot sun and the sunburns my family and I would acquire when picking the asparagus the wrong way. That summer I struggled, it seemed like it was never coming to an end.
My motivation grew stronger as the season was coming to an end. I could see the tiredness and anxiety in my family’s face. When it came to school my grades were good, but since I started traveling to different states after my parents’ struggle in finding a job. Credit-wise I wasn’t doing good as I started traveling most of the schools I went to didn’t offer any of the classes they were offered in my previous ones. It was a major complication for me but thank god I was able to overcome and accomplish everything needed in order to have earned every credit necessary. When it comes to communication between my teachers, it progressed incredibly. I started to be more outspoken and learn how to ask questions when necessary. I’ve set up goals to become the first in my family to go to college and have fought hard to get to where I stand now. For example, I plan in making it to at least top 25% of my graduation class would be one of my most outstanding achievements if I fulfill to accomplish. Knowing that my older sisters didn’t attend college gives me the encouragement to try my best and finish off what they couldn’t start.
One of my favorite and by far one of my strongest subjects is math. I’ve adapted to math as a different language we need to understand to make it in this world. Since I have really good impressions in the math field I have considered studying a career that deals with it. That is where Architecture will fall under place for my perfect match. My vital goal is to become a successful architect and help my family in any way possible the way they have always helped and been there for me.
If I had the financial requirements to pursue my goal there would be nothing more standing in the way to achieve it. I have confidence that the C.A.M.P program can help me become that person I’ve always dreamed of becoming. It would make a major impact in my whole family especially to my parents who have struggled practically their whole life. They have unconditionally supported me and will continue to do so for the benefit of my brothers as well. I want to demonstrate to them that all that agricultural work done and all those days of giving their best would have been worth it. The sound of being the first one of my family graduating from college makes me want it more because I want to prove not only to myself but to many other people especially my own sisters that even because we don’t have the financial support doesnt mean we need to quit in fulfilling want we always wanted to. That right there would really complete my dream.