Dallas Radio Program Answers Concerns Over DACA, Immigration

Young people aired their stories on KHVN 970 AM and confronted callers who were divided in their positions on immigration

Four undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children by their parents answered questions on the air for the African-American audience at Gospel Radio Station KHVN Heaven 97 on Friday.

As the fate of so-called "Dreamers" is aired in Washington, D.C., four young people aired their stories on the radio and confronted callers who were divided in their positions on immigration.

Delma Gorostieta, a law student at the University of North Texas, said she was brought to the U.S. at age 3.

"I don't know any other country but this country," she said. "My whole life has been here."

Texas A&M Commerce student Diana Quinonez said she hopes to become a bilingual teacher but worries she could be forced to leave the U.S.

"People say, 'Well, it's the law,'" she said. "Slavery used to be legal. So why are we basing ourselves on that? We need to think of this as another human being."

Dallas businessman Ivanne Berumen said the four young people have been fighting for new laws. They visited Washington, D.C., recently with a group of North Texas "Dreamers" with support from activist Domingo Garcia and his wife, Dallas County Commissioner Elba Garcia.

"We don't need more border security," Berumen said. "We want to create an inclusive community for all that want to come."

UNT student Alberto Garcia is working toward a career in real estate, hoping to help improve his community.

"And if you look at it, everyone in America is a 'Dreamer,'" he said.

The Dallas African-American and Hispanic communities have been in conflict at times over jobs and neighborhoods, and callers from KHVN's largely African-American audience reflected that conflict.

"You should be mad at your parents bringing you here and not going through the proper paperwork like everybody else," one man told the guests.

A woman who said she grew up in Oak Cliff when it was predominately African-American now finds her old neighborhood to be mostly Hispanic.

"I have a problem with them, when they do come here. They go into the black neighborhoods and they push them out of their own neighborhood," the woman said. "Look at what the Hispanics are doing to the black community. They're pushing us out."

Diana Quinonez responded.

"We have to come together. We're not going to get anywhere if you keep pointing at somebody else's race and saying, like, that's the problem. We need to come together and get things done together," she said.

Some callers were more welcoming to the young "Dreamers."

"You all keep on," one man said. "We're going to unite as minorities and work together."

Alberto Garcia said unity is the path to success for Hispanics and African-Americans.

"We both feel like minorities can run this country in the future," he said. "And the only way we can do that is if we come together and we can learn from each other."

Host Robert Ashley recalled that African-American and Hispanic civil rights leaders have marched together in the past. He thanked the young guests for visiting Heaven 97.

The Community Forum program airs each weekday from 12 to 2pm on KHVN 970 AM.

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