A busy Natalie González crowned Dinuba’s Cinco de Mayo queen

Dinuba High School sophomore Natalie Anissa González has been chosen as the 2019 Cinco de Mayo queen.
Dinuba High School sophomore Natalie Anissa González has been chosen as the 2019 Cinco de Mayo queen.

Natalie Anissa González wasn’t certain she’d have time to compete in the 2019 Cinco de Mayo pageant.

After all, she had a volleyball tournament with her travel squad in Reno the same weekend as the pageant, plus she already had track and field practice that would eat away at pageant preparations.

“I wasn’t planning to come back this year,” said the 16-year-old Dinuba High sophomore who was crowned Cinco de Mayo princess in 2017.

In the end, González relented to encouragements by pageant director Debbie Rojas.

That meant when her father, Dinuba public works employee Juan Carlos González would drive her to school at 7 a.m., she would carry three backpacks. Classmates jokingly asked her if she was moving out of her house.

On April 27, González was crowned the new queen.

“I’ve very proud of my daughter,” said her father in Spanish. “She had to work hard for it. She keeps following her goals.”

That is putting it mildly.

González has a 4.83 GPA, and is ranked No. 1 in a class of 563 students. She has been Emperor of the Month each of her first two years at the high school, takes part in the school’s volleyball and track and field (hurdles and jumps) teams.

The biggest accomplishment, however, has been her selection as the school’s Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Award, which goes to one sophomore a year. She is already planning for the state conference.

González, who hopes to become a trauma surgeon, is a MED Pathway student.

The pageant, she said, does not come easily to her.

“I know what I like to do, and not go outside my comfort zone,” said González, who has an older brother who is a firefighter and a younger sister.

A teacher suggested she try out for the pageant two years ago. “It’s not like I can lose anything,” said González.

The pageant has had positive consequences, she said.

“I’ve been able to grow a lot as a person, and I’ve developed a lot more love for my culture,” said González.

For her talent, she did a monologue in English and Spanish about growing up the daughter of immigrants who are frequently stereotyped as negative influences in the country. Her mother is from Venustiano Carranza, Michoacán; and, her father is from Atotonilquillo, Jalisco, near Guadalajara.

González grew up hearing about how her mother was 5 years old when she came to this country and starting school not knowing a single word of English.

“I will be selfless.

“Usaré mi voz.

“I will be an advocate.

“I will prove the statistics wrong.

“Soy la hija de inmigrantes y dejaré mi huella en este mundo.” (I am the daughter of immigrants and I will leave my footprints in this world).

González wants to educate the community about the many contributions that immigrants have made and are making. She also wants to prove to teens and their parents that higher education is attainable.

Her desire to become a trauma surgeon arose from seeing her mother work as an RN on the surgical floor.

González was 5 when her grandfather died. She painted a picture of a house with a person walking toward the house holding a satchel with the Red Cross logo.

When her mother asked her about the painting, González replied, “That’s me. I want to be a doctor. I want to help people like my grandfather.”

For fun, González turns to chemistry.

“It’s very easy to me but sometimes it challenges me. It can make me think in a different way. I like to see how chemicals react to each other.”

González, said her mother, “is a perfectionist. Her anxiety is going to cloud her vision.”

So far, so good.

Miss Cinco de Mayo’s monologue

Imagínate abriendo tus ojos in a world where you have planted your seed, en un mundo de colores y gente maravillosas, of unity made from diversity, of happiness found in equality. But your true color is quite different than the ordinary and your raíces lie far from the place you consider home.

“You are unable to express your authentic colors because you live in fear of deportation, therefore you are neutral. Six million people live with this fear. The rush of guilt I feel within my veins is unmatched. Bu the guilt I feel is far from the “ordinary,” being unable to say that my parents will never be taken away by La Migra brings me both satisfaction but sorrow for those who may never be able to hear those words come from their very own mouths.

“I have found it my purpose to be an outlet for people who have this fear, to advocate for my cultura and what once was a fear that my parents lived with.

“Being the daughter of an immigrant goes deeper than just having “parents from México.” My bloodline goes as far as the indígenas that fought during the Battle of Puebla. It is about not being able to speak English adequately but also not being able to speak Spanish the way I’m suppose to.

Dinuba High School sophomore Natalie Anissa González has been chosen as the 2019 Cinco de Mayo queen. JUAN ESPARZA LOERA

“It’s having to hear that I’m too ‘pocha’ to hang with my cousins from México but too ‘paisa’ to listen to a political debate without becoming offended. Being the daughter of immigrants is listening to people ‘quietly’ whisper hateful things about me; yet, little do they know their voices can be heard from a mile away.

“Hearing people say that 25 percent of the U.S. prison population is made up of Mexicans is infuriating. They overlook the fact that there are still five million people working in the scalding, hot weather of the fields, all so that they can create a better life for their families. These words of hatred, powerful enough to build a wall of our own, a wall that will be almost impossible to break down. Una pared que se ha convirtido en nuestras personalidades.

“Nosotros los latinos deberíamos aprender a ser motivados por las derrotas. To find ganas from being doubted by others. We must look to people like Dolores Huerta, Sonia Sotomayor and César Chávez, who said ‘Sí Se Puede.’ These people, through perseverance. and passion fought for what they believed in and broke through the Latino stereotypes.

“We must put a stop to the mumbles, and use our voice. The voice we were given not only to be used for ourselves but to speak for those who feel they have no voice. We have our goals and just like anyone else, we have the typical Sueño Americano. In order for us to fight for what we believe in, tenemos que educarnos.

“Es tiempo que la sociedad acepte a la jente por quienes son después de aceptarse a sí mismos. We must make the changes in the world that we desire to see. We must learn to help others find their purpose. We must carry out our own purposes. We must tell ourselves everyday ...

“I will be selfless.

“Usaré mi voz.

“I will be an advocate.

“I will prove the statistics wrong.

“Soy la hija de inmigrantes y dejaré mi huella en este mundo.”