A Day Before A Day Without Immigrants

By: Alana Adams
By: Alana Adams

The lights will be off in most, if not all, stores and businesses on south Wells tomorrow, so employees don't have to make the decision about going to work or even shopping.
But, is the point being heard across the country.

The message from the Latino leaders in Reno is encouraging people to stay at work and in school, but attend the march and candlelight vigil scheduled later in the day.
People are divided here, and across the country, about whether a "walk-out" is a more appropriate way to get everyone's attention.

Gehovanna Diaz immigrated to the US from Costa Rica several years ago.
She says she wanted a better life, and she exactly where she needed to go.
"The government needs to see the difference the US would be if all immigrants didn't do their obligations."

Myrna Ayala is orginally from Guatemala, but has lived in the US for 25 years.
She is a legal US citizen, but says she still understands the plight of others seeking citzenship.
"Most Americans won't do the jobs that we will do. So, it's unfair. So, who's going to do them if they leave?"

Some say recent protests across the country did not receive the publicity intended.
Latino leaders are encouraging a different approach in Reno: bring an
American flag, go to work first and stay in school.

Ayala's son, Gabriel, is 14 years old and was born in Reno.
He says things have changed since the recent protests.
"Before it didn't really matter that I was Hispanic. But, lately, there's been a lot of racism in my school and people will just come up to me and call me names, and I'll have to walk away."

Those planning to participate Monday, in one way or another, say this shouldn't divide, instead remind everyone why they first came to this country.
Ayala says it's simple.
"All of us here are immigrants, or at least most of us are immigrants. We come from different countries. This is nobody's country, it's actually an immigrant country."


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