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22 Mar, 2010 07:22

Protestors on Capitol Hill demand action on immigration reform

Tens of thousands of protesters have descended on Capitol Hill demanding action on immigration policy. They say the country must recognize those who have helped to build it.

“Black people can be here. White people can be here. But Spanish people can’t be here,” the protestors exclaimed.

They filled the streets and marched toward a place so many others have done in the past, hoping to be heard.

“It is totally unfair and un-American for us to take their services, utilize their services, let them mow our lawns, take care of our children, make our beds and make the meals we eat in the restaurants and then tell them we can’t be part of this society. Enough is enough,” Edison Severino, leader of the Laborers' International Union of North America (LIUNA), told RT.

Students from Indianapolis were protesting over the fact that undocumented immigrants are unable to attend college.

Lisette Quinones, protestor, said, “Many of their dreams are as simple as, to become an engineer, to become a graphic designer, or just to be a teacher, but because they lack [the money] they cannot go.”

Tens of thousands of people showed up to demand action on immigration reform. But it is a message that may fall on many deaf ears, since inside the walls of the Capitol lawmakers were working tirelessly on reform of a different kind.

With healthcare the top priority, some were skeptical of the effort.

“I don’t know how much effect it’s going to have. I don’t know if the politicians are going to pay any attention to it,” one man believes.

However, in a video message from the White House, President Obama pledged that he has not forgotten about them, and promised to work toward a bipartisan solution some time this year.

“I hope Obama really listens to us. It has been a little while, but eventually things are going to be the way they are supposed to be,” hopes protestor Gonzalo Medina.

The LIUNA Labor leader thinks that “it is not a Republican or a Democratic issue – it is an American issue.”

Though for some, change cannot come soon enough.