The United States is a country of immigrants. In the 19th and 20th centuries, millions of Europeans arrived before modern-day quotas and visa requirements. How can we reconnect with that early immigration history? How can we listen to the stories of Latinos, Asians, Africans and other undocumented immigrants today who work hard to earn their piece of the American dream? It’s exactly what you just said. It’s about connecting the dots with the immigrants that came before us and the immigrants that are coming now and the ones that will come after us. We [immigration rights advocates] are trying to connect the dots for people. There are so many kinds of people today who say, “Oh, my family came here legally. My family did it the legal way.” They forget that what was legal then is not what’s legal now. People were coming from Ellis Island and literally chopping off the three last letters of their last name to sound less Polish or Jewish, so they could make it through Ellis Island. That, to me, is no different than using fake papers to make it through. I think we forget about those things. We forget about the heritage of our nation. We forget that the reason we are the best country in the world is because we have always had people who have wanted to come here, who have sacrificed everything to come this country, who have risked their lives to come to America. The day people don’t want to come here anymore is the day we should be worried. Do you think people still want to come to America and view our country the same way? I don’t think it’s the same as when my parents came here three decades ago. Even when people ask me, I tell them it’s very difficult to come to the U.S. when you don’t have documents. It’s a life of struggle, pain and suffering. It’s definitely not a life that I would want for my children, to have to live in the shadows, to have to live in fear, to have to be demonized by a country where you have grown up. I do think that people are starting to realize it is superdifficult. I still think that the American dream is possible. I still think that if you really want something, you can make it happen. I still believe there are more opportunities here than there are in other places of the world. Maybe I am still filtering everything through really rose-colored lenses, but that’s the only way I’ve been able to go through life, was to just be really optimistic about things. While there are people that view us differently—yes, we have problems with the economy—but I think there are opportunities here that there aren’t anywhere else. The gap between the rich and the poor is wider than it’s ever been in America. The corporatization of America has changed our country and is a contentious issue in the 2016 presidential race. How do you feel about Wall Street today? That is a really big question. I am still a believer that you reap the fruits of your labor and that you have to work really hard to earn the things that you have. I still think it’s the private sector’s job to create jobs, not the government’s job to create jobs. But there should be politics in place to allow for that to happen. The issue is that everybody does not have access to the same opportunities. Not everyone has access to become CEO of a company. Not everyone has access to even higher education. Or even beyond that, not every child in this country has access to elementary education. Those are all the issues that impact wealth. The starting line is not the same for everyone. Not everyone has access to the same opportunities. But it’s hard for me to say it’s not possible because I had to overcome so many challenges to be able to have the kind of job that I did and to make the kind of money that I did. It wasn’t easy. But I still think that I got lucky. I still have had so many opportunities that other people don’t. There might be people who traveled the exact same journey that I did but are still not in the same position that I am. That’s why I am an advocate for immigration and I am an advocate for education reform, and giving students access to higher education, regardless of where they are born or their immigration status. How do you think we decrease the gap between the rich and the poor? Increase the opportunities. Make the playing field more even. There’s no question that 1 percent of America has the most wealth. And 99 percent of the rest of us don’t. There is no question that there is something wrong with that. There is a system that has made that possible. The way you fix that is you have to make the playing field more even for everyone. And you have to give everyone the same kinds of opportunities. If everyone had access to the same opportunities and we still had rich and poor people, then we could say some people are working harder than other people. That is the whole concept of capitalism. If you work harder, you earn more. But that’s not the truth. That’s not how it actually really works in real life. You have people who are working two jobs, who are working 40 hours a week at two different jobs, two shifts, and still can’t make ends meet. That’s the problem. That’s where the problem lies. You do have people who are working really hard and still can’t make it. That’s the problem. Another big problem is immigration. How do we solve that? For immigration reform, there are a few different things that need to be addressed. The first is the people who are living here, who are undocumented, who have been living here for an average of 10 years, who haven’t committed violent crimes. Those people need to be integrated fully into American society because they want to contribute more than they already do to this country. There needs to be a path to citizenship for those 11 million people. A lot of people say they don’t deserve to be American citizens. They should just be legalized. To me, that’s not enough. I can’t imagine not being an American citizen. In November, it’s going to be the first time I can cast a vote for a president. That means something to me. Unless it’s a path to citizenship, it’s not enough. That needs to be addressed when we talk about comprehensive immigration reform. The other thing that also needs to be looked at is the legal immigration system and how people can come to America. So many of the quotas are based on race. It’s 2016. That’s what our immigration system looks like. The legal way that people can come here needs to be addressed. The fact that someone from Mexico or the Philippines, for example, has to wait in a 20-year line in order to come to the U.S. is not sufficient. A 20-year waiting list is too long. The immigration system is broken. When we are talking about immigration reform, we are not just talking about a path to citizenship for undocumented people. We are talking about overhauling a system that is absolutely broken every which way you look at it. Your support matters…

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