As a first-generation, undocumented immigrant from Mexico, I fight for equal rights for all. I came out of the shadows as undocumented in order to become a leader in the immigrant rights movement.
I came out of the shadows by saying "I am undocumented and unafraid" at protests, press conferences, and live TV interviews. I traveled across the US to participate in direct actions, protests, immigration conferences, and lobbying campaigns to push for the passage of immigration reform bills. I was invited to the White House and talked with President Obama about immigration reform. I cofounded UndocuMedia.org, which promotes the integration of immigrants into American society, and Polibeats, which helps educate and mobilize immigration rights supporters.
My freshman year in college I realized I could not stand on the sidelines any longer and wait for others to fight for my rights and dignity. I shed my fear of deportation. Traveling across the country without a "legal status" could have resulted in my detention and deportation. But it was a risk that I was willing to take. It is my duty to speak up whenever I see injustices and oppression.