Clodagh Heller Davis is part Spanish, Filipino, English, Irish, Bohemian and Dutch. However, for me she’s an “all American” girl — never been to other countries, but America. After taking her photograph in the studio, we noticed thousands of people are gathering to protest outside. My guess was it’s an anti-Trump rally.
May Day rally march started from Mac Arthur Park towards Grand Park downtown LA. Around 15,000 working people showed up in the rally from more than 100 different groups representing wide range of issues. It was a peaceful and well-coordinated rally of local people. The coordinators were expecting 100,000 supporters, but due to 85 degree weather only 15,000 people came out. Organizers also mentioned, people not showing up could mean fear or ignorance.
Mayor Garcetti released a statement before the rally:
“We stand together today to send a very clear and strong message that Los Angeles will stand up against any attempt to scapegoat immigrants, break up families, and create a climate of fear that unsettles our communities and disrupts our economy.”
“Americans are taking to the streets of L.A. and cities across the country on May Day because we are uniting around a principle that speaks to who we are: working people who have built their lives in this country deserve protection, compassion, and equal justice.” After seeing all the movement happening outside, I decided to investigate the event up-close. I’m proud of my fellow-men, the Pilipino Workers Center organization for representing the Filipino community in Los Angeles. Everyone in the rally is serious and committed to make a statement and create awareness. “Immigrants are not criminals. We are workers, who helped build this city and contributed everything to this society.” Seeing men and women all ages, from different backgrounds and religion groups united in this rally was incredible. Anything is possible. People can work together despite their differences.
While I was walking back towards our building, I noticed a man, who is standing with such pride — proud for what he believes in. Yet, behind a brave man is a fearful person, who’s afraid of his family members taken away from him due to deportation. Breaking families is not the answer to this country’s immigration problem. After all, we have the same goal in life – to live peacefully with our families.
My parents, sisters and I are immigrants. It was such big hardship for my folks to bring us here from the Philippines. Why do people from all around the world want to live in America so badly? Is the country we’re from so terrible or inhabitable that we would take desperate measures to move our lives here? Is it because we can’t fix our own countries, and so we migrate to a successful land instead? Immigrants have their ways of throwing off-balance wherever they go. On the other hand, they are also the reason why America is one great nation. Considering, this country has become so complicated, we never regret building our lives in US soil. My husband and I met and had our lovely children here and we’ll continue to be optimistic and supportive on what’s best for our country.