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Saturday, November 17 , 2018, 1:02 am | Fog/Mist 49º

 
 
 
 
Teenagers

Louise Palanker: Scared of Donald Trump; Wanting a Girlfriend, Not a Best Friend; Lesbian Questions

Question from Angela

Weezy, my family is Mexican. My grandpa is not documented and we are all really scared right now that Donald Trump won the presidential election. Can they take him away?

Weezy

Yes, President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign platform was stoked around the issue of clamping down on immigration and deporting illegals. This does sound terrifying to many Americans.

It appeals to a base of people who believe that their under-employment has something to do with immigrants taking their jobs. It does not. Plants and mines are closing in America because we are moving beyond an industrialized society into a more technological and green energy-based economy.

A high school education is no longer enough to ensure a person a good-paying factory job that would last a lifetime. For many generations it was.

People feel angry. But anger against immigrants is misplaced and it has been unfairly fueled by Trump. This is my soapbox and I am not quite ready to get down yet.

Did you notice that almost everything Trump said while campaigning was a lie? You can fact-check me fact-checking him and you will find that to be true.

So, no, I do not believe he is going to engage in mass deportations. But does a president have the power to deport your grandfather?

The short answer is yes. Trump has promised to triple the number of ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) agents employed in an effort to round up millions of people. Even if it were not inhumane, that sounds overly ambitious. My questions to Mr. Trump would be:

“How exactly is this going to work?”

“Are we supposed to turn in our neighbors?”

“Will there be a reward for turning in our neighbors?”

“WHO ARE WE??!!”

We all need to ask ourselves that question. As an individual. As a community. As a nation. Who are you? Who are we?

The throngs of protesters across our nation are expressing their answer. They do not agree with Trump’s ideas or proposals. Their answer to this important question is, “We ARE NOT a reflection of Trumps’ values or morals. We are his polar opposite. He is not fit to lead us.”

Trump claims that his first priority will be to round up and deport criminals. (This is current law. An illegal immigrant convicted of a crime is deported.) Trump goes on to say that he will deport migrant workers and people living in sanctuary cities. This is the height of hypocrisy since Trump has employed undocumented workers at his properties. He is also married to a woman who was undocumented when she began working in America.

His plan would cost about $1 billion. I don’t think this is good use of government funds. I don’t believe it will happen and I especially don’t believe that your grandfather is in any danger.

What is at far greater risk is a program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, which is President Barack Obama’s 2012 initiative that gives protection from deportation to people who arrived here as children. They know no other home and consider themselves to be Americans.

Your grandpa will be just fine but if you feel a sense of outrage regarding Trump’s proposals, speak out. Organize. Join. Write. March. Talk. Gather. Plan. Our collective voices will always be more powerful than any one person.

Click here for more on this subject.

                                                                 •        •        •

Question from Phillip

I’m a guy and my best friend is a girl and I have fallen in love with her, but she doesn’t love me the same way I love her, and I’ve known this for a long time but I can’t forget about it or move on from her.

We have known each other for about five or six years now and we are really close. We talk a lot and we help each other with our problems, and we have gone through some of the same things. The thing is, I love her for who she is, and she keeps trying to be someone who other guys will like. I just don’t know what to do anymore.

Weezy

There is a Taylor Swift song for your situation, “You Belong With Me” — which is a song for pretty much every romantic scenario. There are in fact, many songs about exactly this because what you are experiencing is so very universal.

Of course, it makes no sense that she doesn’t love you the way you love her. But this excruciating lesson teaches us that a lot of human emotion and energy is out of our control. We have to just accept what is.

Romantic attraction can not be explained. You could be the greatest guy in the world for this girl, but if she doesn’t see it that way, there is nothing you can do to convince her otherwise.

You may need to give yourself some space from her. Say, “This has just gotten to be too painful. I want more and so I need less. Please understand.” Then force yourself to stop spending time with her so that your heart can heal and become open to other possibilities.

She may one day see you and your wonderful life and success and know that she made a huge mistake trying to change herself for people who were not worthy of her. But that will be her journey. It can never be yours. You need to take care of you. And the only way to get over her is to put time and space between the two of you.

(TaylorSwiftVEVO video)

                                                                 •        •        •

Question from Jennifer

Am I still a lesbian if I was once in love with a guy but no longer desire to be with a guy?

It wasn’t miserable being with a guy but it wasn’t ideal. I didn’t really understand why people were so crazy about it. There were happy times with this guy. After all, he was a really great, sweet and caring guy ... but I still didn’t feel fulfilled or incredibly happy.

Can I still call myself a lesbian?

Weezy

Yes, you can. You may define yourself in any way you wish. If you are mostly attracted to women, then it sounds to me like you are a lesbian. There are straight people who have had one or two homosexual experiences and there are certainly A LOT of gay people who have had a heterosexual experience. Especially since it can seem more socially acceptable to be in a heterosexual relationship.

Being gay does not mean that you stop finding people of the opposite sex attractive. Your family and friends may even continue to encourage you to find people of the opposite sex attractive. This is not their life. It is yours.

If, in your gut, you know that you would rather share your romantic and sexual life with a person of the same sex, then that is what you should do. You may be a bisexual who leans toward a same-sex preference, but these are all just labels. You may, by all means, consider yourself to be a lesbian.

                                                                 •        •        •

Got a question for Weezy? Email her at [email protected] and it may be answered in a subsequent column.

Louise Palanker is a co-founder of Premiere Radio Networks, the author of a semi-autobiographical coming-of-age novel called Journals, a comedian, a filmmaker (click here to view her documentary, Family Band: The Cowsills Story), a teacher and a mentor. She has a teen social network/IOS app and weekly video podcast called Journals Network, built around a philosophy of cyber kindness. She also teaches a free stand-up comedy class for teens at the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are her own.

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