Arizona State University student Belen Sisa, an undocumented immigrant, posted a picture on Facebook on March 26 of herself with her tax form.
Sisa explained in the post how she is not able to get benefits that other taxpayers receive, and she challenged President Donald Trump to show his taxes:
MYTH BUSTER: I, an undocumented immigrant, just filed my taxes and PAID $300 to the state of Arizona. I cannot receive financial aid from the state or federal government for school, I cannot benefit from unemployment, a reduced healthcare plan, or a retirement fund. I think I'm a pretty good citizen.
Oh and there are MILLIONS just like me who pay into a system they will never receive anything from. Wanna tell me again how I should be deported, contribute nothing and only leech off this country while the 1% wealthiest people in this country steal from you everyday? How about you show me yours Donald J. Trump? #HereToStay
After the posting went viral, Sisa told The Arizona Republic on March 27 why she went public.
"I was hoping to kind of make a statement and educate people," she said. "What you’ve known all this time isn’t the truth. I decided to post it basically to bust the myth that immigrants don’t contribute and they don’t pay taxes to this country.
However, many of her fellow Facebook users were not interested in being educated, and the 23-year-old received dozens of messages threatening to report her to the FBI, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Immigration and Naturalization Service (which no longer exists).
Sisa posted screenshots of some of the messages that she received:
You’re disgusting and I hope that you and your family will be sent back to the lesser country that your ancestors built.
Whose social are you using? Your face/clothes/car seems to be contrary to u needing assistance girl.
If you are a foreign invader you will be investigated and picked up I will see to it myself. Who am I you may ask? I’m your biggest nightmare ... I am a governor hopeful and putting your deportation on my resume is going to look great on my accolades.
"As a matter of policy, the agency does not speculate on any alleged tips made through the ICE tip line," Yasmeen Pitts O'Keefe, an ICE spokeswoman, told The Arizona Republic via email.
Former President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program legally protects Sisa.
Sisa came to the U.S. from Argentina with her parents when she was 6-years-old; her parents overstayed their visas.
President Obama used an executive order to institute DACA to allow undocumented immigrants -- who were brought to the U.S. as children -- to get a two-year reprieve from possible deportation. DACA also allows these immigrants, like Sisa, to get a work permit, driver's license and Social Security number.
Sisa told The Arizona Republic that she was saddened to receive so many hate messages:
It makes me feel a little sad, to be honest, that for showing and educating and basically doing the right thing, I am being hated on so much. Even when you do the right thing, that’s not good enough. It was trying to bully me into shutting up. That’s what they wanted and I’m not gonna let them do that.