This Is What Democracy Looks Like

by Jingru Huang | August 2, 2013 4:07 pm

The series of actions on August 1st were my very first experiences with civil disobedience.

A lot happened and there were many moments that were unforgettable. The moment that deeply touched me was when activists were getting arrested in front of Speaker Boehner’s office.

They started by saying why they were there and what groups they represented. Then they sat down in a circle with arms linked, blocking passage through the hallway and chanting things like, “Show me what democracy looks like! This is what democracy looks like!” That’s when the arrests began. As they peacefully chanted, police began handcuffing them and taking them away one by one.

Even in the end, when there were just two of them left, they still held hands tightly and continued to chant. We always think that individual voices can hardly be heard, but today I saw that even just one person can be heard if she raises her voice loudly enough.

I’m proud of these brave activists for standing up for the 11 million undocumented immigrants whose voices too often go unheard. As an immigrant, I’m also proud of myself for fighting for progress and equality in this country under the designation “U.S. citizen.” I hope that Congress will pass inclusive, comprehensive legislation with a pathway to citizenship.

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