By Giselle Palomera
Members of the East Los Angeles College Speech team presented award-winning performances using comedy, poetry, rhetoric, drama and wit to engage the audience into their individual topics on Monday and Tuesday.
Among the topics highlighted were Donald Trump’s Wall, the lack of diversity in the Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics program, being cheated on in a relationship, American military intervention in Ukraine, and being a stay-at-home father.
Student Kaitlyn Gonzalez used poetry as a vehicle to convey messages about Trump’s rhetoric and plans to build a wall.
She used imagery and symbolism in her performance which included some of the president’s famous Tweets and examples of other nations that have built walls.
“A nation without borders is not a nation,” Trump said on Twitter in July 2015.
Gonzalez used many of Trump’s quotes and Tweets against him and added a dramatic essence to the selection.
Using speech she painted a picture of a cold 55-foot concrete wall separating two nations using examples of the Berlin Wall and the Great Wall of China. Gonzalez mentioned the separation of East and West.
She gave various examples of why Trump’s plan for a wall would fail and become a bigger problem.
Gonzalez said that although she is not undocumented, she still fears for her friends and family that do not have legal status.
Undocumented people came to this country to be, “undervalued, separated and overworked,” Gonzalez said.
In her selection, mocking Trump, Gonzalez compared Mexicans to dirty, brown water.
Trump, she said, makes them feel like that is all they are: “the dirty brown water that floods the pearly white streets.”
Gonzales motioned at herself and said that her and her people have been seen as savages throughout history.
Giving off the impression that she is the furthest thing from looking like the ‘savage,’ Native Americans that Trump describes during his rallies.
Other members of the speech team presented their award-winning selections using comedy and rhetoric.
They used lines from quotes and articles or videos to convey their message.
Student Arthur Kozloyan presented his selection on the lack of attention and recognition that the Armenian Genocide receives.
Kozloyan believes the Holocaust has always been recognized because of the severity of the event and events leading up to it, but the Armenian Genocide remains under acknowledged.
He said that more people need to admit the genocide happened and that it was a significant event in history.
Student William Kunkle spoke on the topic of American military intervention in the Ukraine.
He used ethos to establish his credibility and state why America should not get involved.
Using past wars as examples, Kunkle aimed to convince the audience that America should not intervene in Ukraine because it will further intensify the tension between the U.S. and Russia.
Student Kimberly Catalina Sanchez performed her award-winning selection about past relationships and the trauma that came with finding out she was her boyfriend’s “side chick.”
Student Eddie Diaz presented an award-winning selection on the topic of being a stay-at-home father and the troubles that parents face with their first child.
The Speech Team used various tactics to persuade the audience and to inform them of various topics.
“This showcase is important because it really shows what we are attempting to do with pieces or speeches…,” David Hale, the director of forensics, said.
“But also what potential there is for students here on campus.”