Araceli (Student), 17 years old from Ciudad Juarez

I met Araceli at her college where she is studying mechatronics. She tells me that her city is much less violent now but when she was 10 years old she would not be allowed to go out and play. Her parents would not let her watch TV either as much of the violence that was taking place on the streets, specifically between 2008 and 2014, was transmitted at all times. Having said that, people’s confidence seems to have returned, fortunately, she adds.

Araceli is very proud of the many positive aspects of her city such as the artistic and cultural expressions that exist there; it is also an honour for her to have the inspirational Taraumara people living in her State –so many talented people around.
She enjoys walking with her family around the city centre every other weekend to visit the cathedral, the urban art manifestations on the walls, and the dancers who set up shows for the people, and she likes to see the Taraumara people playing their traditional music.

It’s very enjoyable to observe the huge effort people make to try and help their families make progress every day. 

One other aspect that she loves about her city is the food, such as the internationally famous burritos which are originally from Juarez.

She dislikes going to the United States of America as she feels that people there are controlled, oppressed and not free. Araceli does not see happiness in peoples’ faces when she goes to Texas in contrast with how she perceives the people of Juarez, who always have a smile and are very expressive. Overall she feels much freer in her city than on the other side of the border.

She thinks Trump is an unfair person as he does not put himself in the shoes of the hard-working people and families who have made such huge efforts to build a life over there and provided many things for the United States.

If she had President Trump in front of her she would tell him not to be unfair, and that as the President of that country he is supposed to help the people.She has family members living on the other side who are in fear of losing everything. They are obviously not at all in agreement with what is going on at the moment.
Once she finishes college, if she manages to get enough money together, she hopes to go to university to study forensic anthropology in Mexico City as that is currently the only city where that degree is taught.

The reason she wishes to study forensic anthropology is to discover what happened to all the women in Juarez that have been disappeared or killed. Her main aspiration is to discover the truth as she finds it very unfair that although the government has the resources to bring justice to the families it prefers to keep quiet about it all.

Ciudad Juarez to Araceli means personal development, change, inspiration and happiness.

Finally, if she could change anything about her city she would like to end the injustices that exist. She explains that there are many cases where the people have trusted the government to resolve the problems but the same government has turned a blind eye to the situation.

She concluded by saying that the Maquiladoras are killing people’s dreams …

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