Meet Jhon Parra, a Colombia-born junior currently attending GSMST. In 2006, he and his family fled from the left-wing terrorist group FARC in Colombia to live a safer life in the United States. Compared to a country where saying the wrong thing could get you in trouble, the U.S. is a land where speech, press, and expression are considerably more open and free. Today, Jhon chooses to exercise these rights to the fullest and encourages others to do the same.
As a liberal, Jhon believes strongly in social and economic equality, immigration rights, and healthcare for all. “No one is better than anyone else,” he tells me, because it’s even written in the Constitution: “All men are created equal.” Immigrants who have committed no crimes deserve to stay in the U.S., he says, because they fought hard to get where they are, just like the rest of us. That’s why Trump’s recent move on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) has made Jhon more determined to stand up for immigrants, especially in Gwinnett County – 15,000 of the 24,000 DACA recipients in Georgia are in Gwinnett alone. Besides progressive immigration policy, Jhon also finds that “democracy without healthcare is ridiculous”, approving of Bernie Sanders’ latest “Medicare for All” bill.
Jhon is active not only in the political community; he also volunteers at Centi Church regularly and pursues his passions in photography and videography enthusiastically as the president of Digital Media Club. He plans to pursue a future in media studies or public policy, hoping to work in Georgia’s legislature and encourage political participation of young people through the organization, the Gwinnett County Young Democrats.
Photo Credit: Sophia Kim (GSMST)
Pictured: Jhon Parra