Neighbors Discuss Cinco de Mayo's Meaning and Immigration Reform

By: Estephany Escobar Email
By: Estephany Escobar Email

HARRISONBURG, Va.---Cinco de Mayo is a day to celebrate Mexican culture and heritage. President Barack Obama stressed the importance of this holiday, as he pushes for immigration reform.

Maria Rosa Canela who is from Mexico said this day means a lot to her.

"It's a big deal to me because it was the first battle that we won against the French and it brought us a lot pride," said Canela.

The owner of Dona Rosa restaurant takes a lot of pride in her Mexican heritage. Therefore, she enjoys when customers come into the restaurant to celebrate this day.

"It makes me very happy because the majority of my clients are American. They come here and get very happy, very excited and they also get a margarita," said Canela.

Customer Ryan Huffman said it is not a day he usually celebrates.

"We didn't even think about it. It just goes by like another day," said Huffman.

In a statement, President Barack Obama said this day reminds us of America's diversity and strength.

During his trip to Mexico, he also mentioned the need to pass a commonsense immigration reform. He said this is one of his top legislative priorities this year.

Huffman said the government should focus on other issues first.

"I think it's an important decision to make but if it takes precedence over the budget then I don't know. I think we need to deal with our economy first," said Huffman.

Canela said giving a pathway to citizenship could help the economy. In addition, the country could benefit from increased diversity.

"As a legal immigrant, it has been hard and I was very lucky to become a citizen but there are people that have been here years and years and they have not been able to become citizens," said Canela.

During his trip, Obama also talked about expanding trade between the United States and Mexico. He said this would help the economic and job growth in both countries.

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