Across the nation and in our own backyard, hispanic workers are crying out against new, tougher immigration laws. Latino workers in about 60 cities throughout the United States are demanding illegal immigrants get the chance to live the American dream. Some businesses throughout the country closed their doors so their hispanic employees could attend marches. Although hispanic-owned businesses in St. Joseph remained open today, their concerns are much the same. With a full house to feed, cooks and servers at La Mesa Mexican Restuarant shout orders in their native language. But business about came to a halt when grassroots organization, the National Council of La Raza ("the race"), called for a nation-wide day of action for immigrant justice. "I talked to some people here in St. Joe, but it sounded like no body was going to do anything, so I decided to open," La mesa owner Antonio Oņate, says. Oņate says he was willing to forego a day`s business to protest tough immigartion laws, because he says he was an immigrant from Mexico himself 20 years ago. "Some people work here, live here, but still have families in Mexico and other countries," Oņate says. Uniting families is a top concern for Oņate and his employee Jose Ssalazar. Both men say recent laws passed through congress are making that difficult. "It used to take just months to get all the paperwork and bring them. Now it`s been taking years--three, four,five years in some cases--never can do that," Oņate says. "I have family there. It`s my mom and a couple of brothers," Salazar says of the people he is trying to bring to the United States. Although Oņate and about half of his employees have Mexican roots, Oņate says they have an American future. "I needed work, I needed a good job," Salazar says. "I am Mexican, but I live here, I work here, I`ve got my family here--my children were born here, and I love this country," Oņate says. Oņate believes all immigrants should be granted the right to make their lives in a new country, especially in a country that claims to welcome the tired, the poor. Oņate says he`s disappointed America is seemingly shutting its doors. Oņate says he hires about seven migrant workers with visas every year, and when their permit expires, he is often left to find replacements.