I moved from Germany to the United States, in 1999. I was a Bosnian refugee in Germany, even though my mom and sister were German citizens. I was not even able even get a permanent visa because I moved to Germany when war started in Bosnia, in 1991. At that time, I signed paperwork stating that I would return to Bosnia when the war was over. The short version is, my parents lived in Germany and left me with my grandmother for 5 years and later they brought my sister; so, I basically raised her.
When I got married, my sister moved to Germany and since she was under 18 years, she was able to become a German Citizen. I could not because I was over 21 and had previously signed the refugee papers that I would return to Bosnia. So, for nine years, I had to go every 6 months to the embassy and stand in line waiting for hours to renew my Visa to stay in Germany. Even though I had a great job and my company was truly helping me get a permanent visa through them, I still was not able to get one at that time. Germany had over 1 million refugees in the country at the time. I am truly very thankful to Germany what they did for everyone.
I was tired of living in fear that one day I would have to go back to Bosnia. I did not want to, as I only had bad memories at that time. I forgot to mention, that I was in very abusive marriage. I was so young and had to run away. I had no hate for him, but at same time he impacted everything I did. I am still impacted today because at times I react the same way.
I started practicing Buddhism right before I applied for my USA visa it changed my life. I truly believe in this passage. “The glory we enjoy in a dream vanishes without a trace when we awaken. When an illusion disappears, nothing is left of its joy except a sense of emptiness, like that which one feels when finally sobering from a state of drunkenness. The joy of Buddhahood, however, is profound, indestructible and everlasting…”
So, I found out that the US, Canada, and Australia were accepting refugees and giving citizenship to Bosnian refugees, who were living in Europe. Before I applied for my visa, I decided to travel and visit all 3 continents. I got my tourist visa at the US embassy and everyone was confused when I entered for first time. Everyone wondered how I got the tourist visa as a refugee! I just told them, “I got it at your embassy”.
I visited San Francisco, Vancouver, Canada and Sidney, Australia. I liked visiting those places but left because they didn’t’ feel right to me. I was so sad on my way back to Germany and my connecting flight was out of Washington, DC. I had a seven-hour layover, so I decided to take a cab and visit the area around the White House. I also visited several art galleries. I had a feeling that this felt like home! It was because of the visit to DC, that I decided to apply for my US Visa.
My son Agan and I waited for over 12 months to get approved We had many interviews before we got approved and it was incredibly stressful. I was so happy when we got approved. Finally, we would have country to call our own. The reason I am sharing this, is because I was confused as to how many unregistered residents there were in the US. I just thought everyone should go through a same procedure as my son and I did, for safety of all as we received all necessary shots we were tested for AIDS, Hepatitis tuberculosis etc.to get approved.
But I feel bad now that I thought this way because it is so hard for south Americans to get visas and how hard their lives were before they got here. They were still working for minimum pay etc. Our system on immigration reform needs to be changed. We need to allow certain numbers of immigrants from South America every year, so they are recorded better and not exploited. I would listen to both sides.
I could not get a decent job as someone from south American because they were working for less than minimum wage. I cannot afford to work for lower wages and survive; but they do. Many individuals do the kind of work that American’s never want to do. I’m just sharing what I was hearing, both sides do have a reason to feel hurt.
We do need a system that protects all American workers, taxpayers etc. Building a Wall will not solve this problem, we need a new immigration reform. Reform that works for all American citizens and refugees.
A WALL IS NO SOLUTION!
My first year living in the US, I was working at the Burlington coat factory in Fredericksburg, VA. I was attacked and called a racist so many times. I didn’t know what I did or said, as I was coming from Europe and I had not experienced any injustices done to African American. I was thinking at that time, “I have nothing to do with slavery!” Plus, this was such a long-time age. Just move is how I thought. Now after living in US, I have seen the injustices and it is truly unforgettable what the white rice has done and how they think. “Do we support human trafficking?” No, but that what white race did for over 246 years after purchasing the first slave. Slaves arrived in Jamestown in 1619 a time when we had laws and we still enslaved people and treated them as property. What kind person would do that to another human being? That is unforgivable.
What makes me even more angry is when a white person states, “they had no civilization anyhow and they lived like animals”. Are you kidding me? Who we are to say we are better than anyone and that our civilization was better than theirs? They were happy and enjoyed a simple life. I think the best life is a simple one without cell phones or computers!
I have a respect for nature and look how we took land from the Native Americans! Ahh here I go again. Not only did we bring slaves to this country, but we took land from the Native Americans. They have a great respect for the land, nature and animals. We should all learn from them because if we don’t, we will have nothing to leave for generations to come. Everyone should be able to live together. “Why we are so arrogant as a race?” We have exploited Africa, Asia, Australia and its people etc. Don’t let me start to talk about what the white race did to aboriginals in Australia ahh White Race is worst race)
One day I was cleaning the Floor and I picked up my head and saw lady looking for something, so I asked her “if she needed help”. As soon as I asked her, I heard somebody screaming from behind me, “you are MF racist!” She said that I never asked her for help but only asked the white woman. I was in shock because I never saw her since she was behind me. I truly did not see her, and I was so hurt that I went home incredibly sad. I am was married to black man and my son is black so why would she say this hurtful thing to me? I then thought how pathetic I was and needed to humble myself and just imagine how many times she was called names. Also, how much injustice she or her family had witnessed or experienced. In a strange way, maybe she had a right to think this way. We should all just get shot up for the next 246 years and experience how it feels; I am just saying.
I told this to my awfully close friend Angela who is African American, and she told me that I was wrong for thinking that she had a right to call me names. No one has that right. Again, we all should be kind to each other easier said than done –how would we feel if we were mistreated and freedom was taken from us for generation to generation. I my self-used to say I have nothing to do with slavery it was long time ago just move on ….we all need to learn more about it and fine way to deal with and help each other ---NO DO NOT MOVE ON UNTIL BLACK LIFES MATTER---This is where white people today can make change for generations to come.
I was sad at that time because I was refuge and I struggled all my life. I was not a racist so why would someone treat me bad and call me names? Did they want me to become racist? For long time I was afraid to say anything to my African American friends or coworker as I felt that whatever I would say, I will be labeled racist. I feel horrible now and the reason for them to label me or any white person a racist was because we as a white race just stood by everything that was going on. Things did not affect me—you - but effected so many African American how blind and ignorant we are as white race as we are ok if we are not personally affected. We need to start to making changes; the black communities are screaming for help! It is so much deeper than that. All is by white race design. Planed and programed well as we still need to exploit –in some way they are still slaves to this program design.
We need to go back in history and educate ourselves inform about slavery and black history.
Unconscious bias is on both sides, but one is excused. We as white race must show more compassion, become more involved and educate ourselves. We need to get informed, get to know you black friends and really get to know your black community. Become involved in building up communities that have been put down for so long by a white race design. We need to help improve schools in poor neighborhoods and hope the community and police officers get to know each other to better understand each other. This is not easy to fix the damage that has happened over the years, but we need to start now before it is too late.
I say BY HUMAN DESIGN (white race design)
Let us talk about it!!!!!!
I posted something in February on Instagram that said something about a t-shirt, that said Same Crime. I got an email from organization that I used to work for saying that a competitor refused to enter a show that I used to judge for because I disrespected the police/law enforcement by posting that.
He is in law enforcement and he is black and his opinion I was disrespecting law enforcement. I got to finally talk to him and explain where I am coming from and the fear I had for my young gorgeous black son. I would tell my son please do not put both earphones and listen to the music while you are walking down the street. The police may tell you to stop and if you do not, they may shoot you in back. I just honestly expressed my feelings and I never said all police are bad. My boyfriend Mark is in law enforcement and my clients are police officers. I love them and they know that, but I honestly think we need to find a middle ground and open more learn more.
But we must also find the system that recognizes troubled persons. Those persons that carry hate towards any race, should not be hired in first place. There must be a system or is it too late since some things are embedded in your brain and memory. Just seeing somebody’s race or skin color will cause people to start assuming things. Making assumptions can be dangerous but everyone makes them in their daily lives.
After I talked to nice to that African American police officer, I found out he was a first-generation refugee from Africa; not sure where. He grew up in an awful bad of New York city. He was very scared for his life every day and sometimes he had to step over dead bodies just to get to school. Crime and drugs were everywhere. He had seen it all so from that standpoint. All I heard him talk about were black Americans in those communities filled with criminals, l criminals, drug dealers and killers.
His experience was horrible, and he decided to become Police officer to fight the crime and help young boys from those type of communities to get out and get educated. He does a lot in his community to help young men turn their lives around’s. I was impressed with how much he cares and how much he does to help. He said I got out and made something of myself and he did, but he was first generation refugee. Why is this important?
First generation refugee has more chance to get out of the projects
The come from a two-parent household with at least one hard working parent.
Someone who sets the example
Someone who said I loved you; they felt loved.
Someone taught them right from wrong.
Having just one role model is sometimes enough to fight and find the way out but what about the rest? Those who are born into a family or community with drugs, crime, no one who tells or shows them right from wrong. Someone who shows them that families are important, not gangs. Someone who tells them you do not have to steal to survive to feed their families. Crime is not the only way for you to survive, there is a better way! But there must be someone around to provide this help or set the example.
We need a system where poor neighborhoods are not isolated but blended. Good Schools, affordable to all!
No segregated White -Black schools
Let us change the” By White race design” To the “BY HUMAN RACE DESIGN”. A design that cares.
This change can only come if we all get together especially white race to fight for this change to empower stop poverty crime and racial injustice.
I said before that I did not personally experience or saw racism in my first years in USA. Hummm, I guess I did not pay attention. It was always there but I never saw color, I was so naïve. I just needed to get out of my comfort zone and open my eyes to get informed and educated. KNOWLEDGE IS POWER. By saying I do not see color (in my mind I am not racist , all men kind is same to me as should be but by saying I don’t see the color also implies I don’t see injustice done …I’m happy I’m ok I’m not racist but so much is wrong done in our country and I’m not doing anything about as I’m ok …..But just watching hearing injustice and not standing up , stepping up fight for change is CRIME ----it is condoling racism than all who are doing nothing are racists as well.
We are against Human Trafficking correct?
We started it. We brought slaves from Africa, stole their freedom and took them from their families. How dare we say anything? Should we let them do the same to us, what then?
Who made a profit and got rich on free labor? This is still happening now with low wages and most people having to work 2 jobs to survive. And this is a great economy in 2019??
White race – we exploit Africa Asia stole gold diamonds today opioids, gas etc.
So many European countries got wealthy on exploiting Africa or Asia shame on us.
We claim we brought people to a new and great civilization. I think those people were happy living the simple life.
Look at Native Americans. We took this country from them and gave them some land. Gave them reservations and alcohol. Check out the alcoholism rate among Native Americans!
In Projects so many people are getting high, drunk and killing each other.
Shame on us! Being led by greedy and corrupt criminals who are running the world. We have hope though! This new, young generation is smart and will bring about the needed change.
Here is one story…of many!
My friend Mo, Tyson and I were on way to Baltimore for an OCB show that I was judging. We were supposed to stay at the hotel on the way there, but we got lost in an unbelievably bad part of Baltimore. Yes, we were scared, and I tried to keep myself together. I wished my hair were black as I looked like a light bulb in dark and we had to stop at every light stop. We saw young kids on every corner, and it was late at night. After 30 minutes of driving through very this horrible part of the city, we finally got to the good part of the city. My son who is black said, “thank god - white people!” I turn around and said to my son, “don’t you ever say that again!” Yes, I was afraid scared …. but I do not hate them or blame them .as white race created that part of the town and are doing but nothing to change it. BY WHITE RACE DESIGN, I explained to my son why I said it.
This was 2015 and still did I do anything? Did I try to change anything? NO, I am living in my own small world dealing with my problems. This needs to change ☹----I can only do so much hmmm we can do so much more IF WE WANT TOOOOOOO, my own world is enough WE ARE ALL QUILTY AS CHARGED
My BFF is Trump supporter; I KNOW! But she probably feels the same about me not being one. She and her husband are the nicest people I know with huge hearts. They are not racist by any means, but they still support Trump which is confusing to me. Once again, we need to ask those who support Trump, why they feel the way they do and if they feel the same way he does about former President Obama. Why the hatred towards him…what did he do wrong? If you want the government to do better for the US people, invest more in America, don’t just talk about it.
Here is where we need to listen to each other and not call each other names. Or call “him” names.
The more CNN talks against him, it is helping him because now his supporter feel sorry for him, even though there is nothing to feel sorry about. I always say just follow the money. I talked to people before he was even running for P…first-hand stories. I lost all respect for him because of his corruption, abuse, and finding loopholes in law etc. I am just saying! There is a lot more. JUST FOLLOW THE MONEY!
WE PUT SMALL CRIMINALS IN JAIL BUT HUGE ONES ARE RUNNING THE WORLD.
EVERYTHING IS DECEPTION; WE ONLY KNOW WHAT BOTH SIDES WHANT US TO KNOW.
WE KNOW NOTHING. WE CONTINUE TO HATE EACH OTHER WHEN SOMEBODY ELSE IS HAVING AND MAKING PROFITS ON IT.
Starting with him ----JUST FOLLOW THE MONEY!
Lying about the high corona virus numbers.
But once again, we want somebody who is successful businessman to run the country??? Someone who filed bankruptcy so many times and ruined so many small businesses. And he is still admired? So many hard-working people, great people, decent people I know follow him, but I still respect all of them accept him. He does not care about anyone except himself…a narcissist.
But again, they have excuse for everything he does ---we need to listen as they are mad about something, they feel strongly about. WE NEED TO LISTEN TO EACH OTHER NOT ONLY PROTECT WHAT WE BELIEVE. HEAR ME OUT, I HEAR YOU OUT
He said white supremacist are good people and they still love him. WHY? What is the reason? Do we twist his words? CNN who? He said it.
He has called women names. If President Obama or any other former President had done anything close to what he did, they would be in jail by now. WHY?
He said he could shoot someone standing on the street and get away with it. Why do people support him? WHAT IS THE REASON HE DID NOTHING FOR THEM, expect make the rich richer? Here is explanation I got. For those to have jobs, we need to give the rich money to create jobs. Huh… paying employees minimum wage jobs were people cannot survive. They must work 2 jobs just to go by. It is like having slaves …
Investors making money etc. but what about those who do not have money to invest? What about creating a strong middle class? Where we all can have a decent life without working 2 jobs just to survive. What about insurance for all? Why are you against it why we let insurance company delegate what treatment we need instead of doctors deciding what you need?
So many people against OBAMA CARE! I lived in Germany and we all had the same insurance. Those who wanted private insurance, got it. I did not care about paying higher taxes as I still had enough to live decent life, I worked in sales one year in Germany, something like Macys. I made 65,000 had my apartment and was single mom. I never used a credit card and saved $10,000 in year had health insurance. I never had to pay anything going to the doctor, I got my medicine for free. Even if I got a massage, it was paid for by my insurance.
We got paid for 100 sick days by the company and after 100 days sick leave government would continue paying sick leave until you recover, and your employer must take you back. You do need a doctor’s note even for 1-day sick leave. I had 30 days paid vacation the 1st year I worked, and I would go on two vacations with my son! We would get double paycheck on Christmas to be able to buy presents. We got double paycheck in summer so we could travel. All these benefits for working a 40 hour per week job as a salesperson. And don’t tell me if you don’t like it here go back to Germany. This is now my home; my country and I love the US and its people. I just want it better for us; we need a better place. All Americans deserve to have a decent life not just some.
Later, I worked as manager when I had my college degree and made even more money. Again, I never had to use my credit card or take out a loan. When I moved here, I worked 60 hour a week, was married and still had to use a credit card. I had to pay for dental bills for myself and my son. Braces took up my paycheck. That was so sad. In Germany this would be free.
For medical care, they say here you must wait on surgery etc. –somebody is spreading layers here as insurance and pharmacies have a lot to lose billions, so they are spreading fear and lies. That's not true at all. If anyone had to stay in hospital you were sharing big room with maybe 5 more people but who cares. I got the service I needed, and I did not need to stay in single hospital room after delivering baby. I am was in pain and I did not enjoy anything, was in pain and you pay 3,000 to 5,000. Are you kidding me? I reader stay with 5 ladies in same room and pay $0 than single room and $5000.
I paid nothing in Europe. But here I cannot afford to get sick and you are talking against something you do not even know about.
So, insurance companies can make money. It is sad I am afraid to get sick as I pay my insurance is a lot and still 4000 copays so sad. I cannot afford to get sick.
WE NEED BETTER HEALTH CARE SYSTEM: For people not for insurance companies. Now Joe Biden needs to think about creating jobs and not for those who work for insurance companies. We need to get rid of some positions but create others, so no jobs are lost.
WE NEED STRONG MIDDLE CLASS so everyone can afford decent life not just some ……SO SAD how some live and we just stand by
---I do not want to depend on those who are rich to give me anything. I want to get what I deserve. People are asking for what they deserve and not to depend on the generosity of the rich. I truly have the same ideology as Bernie Sanders. If everyone knew how good the world would be if we just would trust change and not be afraid of it. Change is needed!
Let us talk about guns and gun rights!
HUH, Republicans say Democrats want to take guns from them. That is not why, reform and controls are need to protect our citizens.
Can you please tell me WHO NEEDS AUTOMATIC WEAPONS??? PLEASE EXPLAIN …if you are a hunter you need automatic firearm …if you want to protect your home do you need machine gun???
To protect your home, you need an automatic weapon. But nobody expects the sick or elderly to need one to protect themselves.
We all need to all work together and not listen to those who want to divide us. WE NEED A PRESIDENT WHO TALKS TO ALL, NOT JUST OWN BASE. We need someone who does not act like a kid and talks like one. He should talk with dignity and respect and it breaks my heart that he does not. We need someone to unite us and stop reacting to the media like a kid. He also never says us or we but always “I”. He ways says that everything he does is the best! I never liked or ever will like people who are not humble. But who cares what I like?
“Governments come and go; economies rise and fall, and society constantly changes. Only the good fortune that we accumulate during our lives lasts forever. The true victors are those who cultivate the tree of Buddhahood in the vast earth of their lives, while achieving success both in society and their personal lives through true faith and a true way of living”. We all need to wear masks when in public inside etc. To protect others and ourselves. But only when we all wear mask we can slow down and stop this virus If all follow the guidelines the spread would stop. To say because we test, we have high numbers, yes, we do. But also, so many countries tested more everyone, and they would trace -follow -quarantine -etc. We just test but we do not follow and trace. We need testing to use to follow the virus to trace so we protect vulnerable and high risk …
Ok here is another interesting story
During the first week in January 2017, (new administration) of course I was incredibly sad. On my brake in DC I went to Panera in Chinatown to get coffee and breakfast. While having my coffee on the 2nd floor there were 5 African American dressed genuinely nice in suits having breakfast. I was sitting near 2 white middle-aged women. One started to talk loudly and got up from her seat and went to the window facing the main street. She pointed at people at bus stop and started screaming, “I hate black people and finally somebody has to come in office with the power to clean our streets. Those people are taking my tax dollars, look at them in their baggy clothes, stinky, dirty black people!
The other lady was quiet and just sat there along with everybody else, pretending they did not hear this. I started to get mad because nobody said anything. In my head I was thinking if she says one more thing, I am going to say something. Of course, she did! You had to see me; I am only 5.2 she was like 6-foot lady. I get up and said very loud to her, “you better sit down and shut the F up! Do not say a word I am speaking. It is enough that a Racist won the election, now I must listen to a supporter feeling free to say whatever they want. NO NO NO! She tried to open her mouth, but she sat down! Lol, she looked scared. I said “don’t you open your stupid mouth; don’t talk about stuff you don’t know anything about. Educate yourself first …they are more white people on using taxpayer’s money than African Americans. What you see on street WHITE PEOPLE CREATED, you did MF! So shut the F up and do not move or I through you through this window! I came to eat in peace and not to listen to the racist BS, so shut up so I can have my breakfast! She sat stay quietly and did not say word. Nobody did and it was just noticeably quiet. After 15 min, she left, and her friend came to me and apologized to me. None of the African American said anything. So, on my way out of the store, one of the people just put card in my hand and when I opened it, there was thank you card for speaking up for everyone and $50 gift card 😊
At that time, I was thinking, “why didn’t anybody speak up?” How little I knew they could not …so heartbroken they had to listen to her speech and pretend they don’t hear her as if they spoke up, she would call police and they would end in jail or worse. WE WHITE PEOPLE NEED TO STAND UP SPEAK UP!!!!!! I must share this for me very sad and embarrassing story but I’m just human and judge me as I judged myself. One day in DC, I was in elevator and 2 young African American men in their early 20’s stepped in the elevator. The first thing I did was to grab my bag under my shoulder. It still painful to talk about this and it took me 2 or 3 seconds to realize what I did, and I was so ashamed. I felt tears in my eyes as I thought how I would I feel if my African American son with his big afro would step in elevator and some white women assume, he is criminal. It’s that unconscious bias again. How we assume most of the time. How movies and media can implant certain judgement in our minds about people of a certain race color or gender. Everything around us does influence in one way or another of how we think and act.
I wonder if I would feel the same way if my son were not black? I wish I could say I would.
Would I fight for the all mankind to have equality? I would like to say YES…. would I????
Please do not just follow or believe …. ASK WHY -question everything as we are all controlled all the time
Where do we get our information? Our news doesn’t talk about world news. We know nothing and it’s so sad our news talks more about movies and who did what. It’s so sad we are not informed on so many things currently going on in the world. Remember what I said, “knowledge is power.” The less we know the more control people/government have over us. The more shows that we watch about wealthy people with big homes and big cars, the more we want them. If we learn about how many kids die each day from starvation, maybe it will change the way we think. Getting rich and living that lifestyle is not going to be a way for most. If you want to get a good look at the world, visit the poor sections of your city. Find out how you can help if possible.
I was so ignorant and blind too many things. I came from Europe and did not know much about, but I should have learned more. Even with my ex-husband, I was always upset we never could go have fun in Virginia Beach because he always was worried about somebody will start fight etc. It did not make sense to me at the time. I just thought he did not want to go anywhere with me as I was ugly etc. long story. Now I get it. A lot could go wrong and at the time I did not understand why he was afraid of things that could involve the police.
I remember a long time ago; I used to say all life matters and did not understand movement. I was so ignorant back then but now after I experienced injustice, I got it.
ONLY WHEN ALL BLACK LIFES START TO MATTER WILL ALL LIVES MATTER.
If we have rare white tigers being killed, we will say “save white tigers” not all tigers etc.…lol,
ALL IN ALL, I STAND STRONGLY FOR BLACK LIVES MATTER !!!! If we find for solution for this reform and this movement all USA will become better place for all.
Strong middle class (will help black lives matter solution for all)
Health care for all (we need to give dignity to all …we all have same right same chance of survival not only rich)
Everyone is entitled to great education not only rich (Free Collage)
NO WALLS ---was to be taken down but build strong fair emigration reform to protect all from exploding ad getting rich on all again wealthy is profiting from --
The same opportunities for all
Let us unite and fight for HUMAN RIGHTS- TO HAVE DECINT LIFE!!
I am terribly sad for where we are now!!I’m an American and love this country with all my heart and its people I’m not giving up I’m just standing up for better stronger USA I want my USA to be better for all its citizens WE DESERVE BETTER !!! I know we can achieve greatness WE are USA all of us together …
"A mind now clouded by the illusions of the innate darkness of life is like a tarnished mirror, but when polished, it is sure to become like a clear mirror, reflecting the essential nature of phenomena and the true aspect of reality. Arouse deep faith, and diligently polish your mirror day and night. How should you polish it? Only by chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo."