Anonymous Draft 1: This I No Longer Believe

Here I am in New York.

I grew up in an underdeveloped country where there are many taboos, stereotypes, and prejudices. Also, my family is very conservative and respectful of ethical and moral values. My parents educated me with an altruistic ideal; they always told me that I must respect the rules and laws, obey the authorities, and be an example to others. That kind of education motivated me to study law. So, I became a lawyer.

I continued with the conservative way of my family. I saw wrong that a person had a tattoo, that used any drugs, including marijuana, I was against someone for being different from what I knew as “normal.” I made prejudices to people I didn’t even know, simply because of the way they looked. I can tell a vast list of things that I believed, and now I no longer believe in them, or I have modified them or improved them. But now, I’m going to focus on the use of marijuana.

As I mentioned, I graduated from law school. I was working in the criminal area as a Prosecutor for more than five (5) years. Most of my cases were about drug trafficking in the Dominican Republic. Every day, I had hearings to get convictions against those who sold, distributed, or used drugs. According to the law, a person who consumes marijuana can be punished for six (6) months to two (2) years in prison (Art. 75, Law 50-88 of the Dom Rep). Thousands of people sitting on the bank of the accused looked at me with sad eyes, asking for an opportunity, explaining to me that they were not doing anything wrong. On the other hand, I was not listening to them because I was busy thinking about some supposed values and false morals; therefore, I was never benevolent with them, and they were punished as if they were the worst criminals.

My life changed entirely in the summer of 2016. I emigrated to the United States for family reasons. Here I am in New York. In the big city. In the capital of the world. In a place with a very different culture and a way of seeing different things. I started working in another work environment to meet people of different nationalities, to study, to read the news, to use public transport, to integrate and adapt to a new life. I could say that my way of seeing things was bombarded day by day for everything I began to experience. Yes, using or trying, but there I was sitting at a friend’s house smoking pot. At that time, I became “the worst criminal too.” What happened to me?


5 thoughts on “Anonymous Draft 1: This I No Longer Believe

  1. Rig Cona

    Where they only punished to the worst because of your morals and values of what you believed in at the time? Was there any discretion that you showed towards these defendants? Also was there a particular case that hit home for you that made you stay in the US and not travel back to Dominican Republic to continue to pursue your Law Career.Reference

  2. Destiny A. Daley

    Great visual in the beginning of the paragraph.
    How did the exposure of colorism ultimately lead you to changing your point of view on marriage? Or do you think it was because of colorism, your mother wasn’t able to love her true self, which is why she felt that she needed love from someone else?Reference

  3. Lessley Perez

    I am unsure if you added this as a note to yourself or if this is a new paragraph starter. I think this sentence would go great in the first paragraph, maybe even work as a second hook.Reference


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