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Desert Companion

Certainty Anyone?

Last January, five people — a student with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals status, a Yucca Mountain supporter, an Obamacare opponent, a Planned Parenthood health educator, and a Muslim American woman — told Desert Companion about their hopes and fears regarding the incoming administration of President Trump. A year later, how do they feel about the topics they discussed?

 

LUIS MONTANEZ

Immigration

Then: “Well, as far as we know, we don’t have any (options).”

Now: “I’m focusing on the things I can control. … When I get depressed, my mom tells me that I have one job, and that’s to do well in school.”

(His DACA status was renewed in May; Trump ended the program in September.)

 

ROBERT LIST

Yucca Mountain

Then: “I’ve felt for decades that sooner or later this project was probably going to happen.”

Now: “I think it’s likely that it will, yes” — answering a question about the possible passage of a Senate bill to restart the licensing process.

(Trump’s so-called “skinny budget” allocated $120 million to restarting Yucca Mountain.)

Support comes from

 

WILLIAM SMITH

Healthcare

Then: “I don’t care who comes into power. To ... change what they’ve already done, I think will be nearly impossible.”

Now: “The ACA repeal/replace is a political farce. … The Republicans and Democrats are arguing more over if it should be all repeal versus replace versus fix. … But whatever it is called, changes are needed.”

 

ROSITA CASTILLO

Reproductive rights

Then: “There are so many barriers to getting healthcare: immigration status, fear, poverty. … Reproductive health is a human right.”

Now: “The list (of things that have happened) is long. There’s the executive order limiting women’s access to birth control, for example, where employers can choose not to provide that benefit with their insurance.”

 

Sara YounisSARA YOUNIS

Islam

Then: “I used to see people like, ‘If Trump is president, we’re gonna go to Canada.’ To me, that’s ridiculous, because he really does not have that much control.”

Now: “I have a family friend who came from Saudi Arabia on his own, and his visa is about to expire, and he can’t renew it, and he’s in a very bad situation.”

(A federal court upheld parts of Trump’s travel ban in November.)

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