The thought that someone would stoop so low as to forbid the entrance of unfortunate children, just to gain a bargaining chip, is unacceptable. The worst part about President Donald Trump’s current “temper tantrum,” is that if the U.S. Congress does not come to terms with his proposal, current benefactors of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy are at risk of being deported.
As if only yesterday, I remember seeing Stephanie Martinez for the first time. Martinez and I both had college algebra together and the atmosphere of the class was brightened with her unique persona. She seemed the kind of person you would want to sit next to since she would probably help you without a “price tag.”
You would think it is easy to understand an idea that television tries to convey to an audience. Sometimes the idea could be conveyed clearly, but it doesn’t go into great detail to help anybody. An example is Spanish novelas where couples divorce and marry other people. For some, that’s a reality.
June 14, 2016 was a day of magical history and mourning for Laredo.
Due to the tragic event that occurred in Orlando, Florida, one specific person decided to use their fame as a way to create one of the most memorable day in Laredo. She is known to the people of Laredo as LaGordiloca.
Hundreds of Laredoans gathered outside of Burlington waiting to show their support for the 50 individuals that were killed in Pulse nightclub in Orlando the day prior to this event.
At the end of this month, right before finals week, I will be attending a festival in South Padre Island where members of the LGBTQ community will unite in celebration. This celebration will honor the progress of acceptance that the community has made these past years. There is no doubt that there is still discrimination alive against this community. It is not easy to be accepted, but it is possible.
I have always said that I became gay by accident, but it’s not true. Since I was a little boy I knew how I felt, but some believe that children don’t recognize their decisions when in fact they do. This festival makes you accept yourself more and it also enhances your confidence about your sexual preference. At least that’s how I felt when I attended last year. It was the first time I ever attended a gay event and I don’t regret going at all. I talked to a lot of people and I found out many things.
Five years ago, I wasn’t who I am now. I wasn’t confident about saying that I am gay. It takes guts to admit to your truths. There are plenty of guys out there that are living in fear because they are worried about other people’s judgement. The truth is that people can’t try to control judgement. The fact that we can’t control makes things more complicated in our minds. For example, one thing I learned I couldn’t control is acceptance.
When I mentioned that I became gay by accident, it was because I thought the end solution would be different. I fell in love with my best friend because of the gay tricks he would always play on me. It’s not right to do gay things if you are not gay. In the end, I couldn’t make him accept what he did or who he was. I was thrown away like trash on the side of the road. I was crushed and disappointed about gaining feelings for someone that never reciprocated them tp begin with. So, I see it as an accident, because I wonder who I would be if I never gained those feelings for him.
I used to date girls, but once I grew feelings for a guy, I knew it wasn’t exactly what I wanted. I honestly thought that he would just accept his truth and become my first boyfriend, but we didn’t have a happy ending like in the movies. From there on, I was trying to figure more about my identity. I was trying to learn how to be gay. Now I feel like a pro because I’ve met some of the most amazing people that have told me their experiences. Some people don’t chose to be gay either. I’ve heard stories about guys getting raped by their uncles. All that does is confuse the individual and begin to make them think they are gay because they got raped by a man. This is an example of a man becoming gay by accident, and not like my situation where I knew what I was doing, and the choices that I was making to continue my relationship.
Attending the festival the first time made me feel comfortable about who I really am. It helped me be the person I had been hiding on the inside. I’m so excited that I get to go back and replace my experience with a new one. I think that no one should ever have to wait to be loved by the person they desire. I waited so long, thinking that maybe one day he would return, and we could start over.
After seven years of not speaking to each other, we finally decided to hang out again. I just couldn’t believe how he thought that I would still be in the same position. Now that I know more than I used, I know not to treat this like a game. All I ever wanted was an explanation why he stopped talking to me. Now I don’t even want to know. He still can’t accept what he did, and those are not the kind of men I want to connect with anymore. I want to communicate with the ones that know more and are comfortable about being true to themselves.
That is exactly why I made every effort to return to this festival because Laredo has a lot of guys that can’t be true to themselves. I don’t know what the problem is about being gay, and there’s no way I can try to figure it out on my own. That is why communities like LGBTQ come together to try and figure out more about this reality in our lives. Just remember there’s no rush. People take time to get comfortable and well mine came around pretty soon in my life. Consider coming to this celebration. Maybe you too can feel like a whole different person.
By Rodolfo Salinas
As I walked worry-free I found myself wondering, how are other students spending their refund money? Honestly, I felt like a million dollars just because I had extra cash for the semester. However, I was still worried because I thought “Are students investing or spending their money?”
By Rodolfo Salinas
Sometimes I wish I had all the money in the world to do the changes I envision for Laredo. I always ask myself why University Boulevard is incomplete. Why isn’t there more housing for students like in other cities? I wish that TAMIU could receive the treatment it deserves from the community. I would apply more emphasis on the institution because it is our only university in town. In more simple words, let’s give it more recognition. There literally needs to be more connection between the community and the university. The fact that University Boulevard doesn’t extend to McPherson Road bothers me. It limits the chances of the university being connected with an important road in Laredo.
This article originally appeared in the February 2016 print edition.
By Rodolfo Salinas
For someone that is single, the month of February can be so bittersweet. I can’t stand the idea of feeling lonely on Valentine’s Day. However, I also can’t stand the idea of not graduating college. Finishing my undergraduate degree is way more important than a relationship right now. I say this because I made the mistake of dropping out of school one semester due to the fact that I fell in love. It’s the kind of love that makes you feel rejuvenated and the kind that makes you take decisions impulsively. You can say I would do and did everything for the person that I was in love with but after that huge mistake that affected my academic endeavor, I will never do it again.