Immigrants Take a Stand

May 1, 2006 -- 6:20 PM CDT


JONESBORO, AR -- There's an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States, and Monday, immigrants across the nation boycotted work, school and shopping.  


Henry Torres, Director of the Hispanic C enter in J onesboro, said that the boycott could have a huge impact on the economy.  


He said that the immigrants are honest people, and they should be treated fairly.


"Those 11 or so million people who are undocumented didn't arrive yesterday or last week," said Torres.   " They've been here a while."


Juilo Diaz is an American citizen, and he supports the immigrants.


"They shouldn't be here illegally, but if they're hereā€¦ they're here," said Diaz.  "They're only here to work.  They're not here to ask for a handout or welfare, they're here to work," he added.        


Undocumented immigrants may be in the United States to work, but is it fair that they're in the U.S. illegally?


"The businesses continue to offer them positions to work," said Torres.  "I think they pay them fairly well, and they do a good, descent job."


Descent job or not, they are still in the United States illegally, and the government isn't happy.


"I support the illegal immigrants.    My grandfather was an illegal immigrant.    I'm now a United States citizen, born in the U nited States of America...and God bless all the immigrants who are trying to fight for their rights," said Diaz.  


The immigration debate is a politically sensitive issue with few ideas on how to resolve the problem.


"It will probably soften up a little bit," said Torres.   " Today might be one of those days where they (the United States) see the true impact or the partial impact of what could really occur.    I don't think it will ever go away."


No one knows if the issue will go away, but "May Day" was about immigrants taking a stand to the United States of America.