Incarcerations, deportations, harassment, violence, threats, media campaigns, new racist laws, new detention centers, fear and hatred promoted across the nation.Last week the state of Arizona passed the radical anti-immigrant law SB-1070 which racially targets people of color, especially people who look like "undocumented immigrants".
Unfortunately, is not only Arizona and its racist laws.
First, the 287(g) Program created by the Clinton administration but implemented by Bush, and now being used widely by DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. This federal program pays local law enforcement at state and city level, to enforce the [broken] immigration law, which according to the U.S. Constitution is a federal responsibility exclusively.
Most of local police forces are not trained about human rights of immigrants and international treaties on treatment of displaced populations. They only see criminals. Thus, thousands of cases of abuse and racial profiling are happening in a daily basis, but they are not being prosecuted and the media is not talking about this at all. Even U.S. citizens are being deported. Read more at Detention Watch Network.
Also there is the Secure Communities Program, which forces local police to share information of all immigrants they detain with ICE (Immigration) and the FBI. Fingerprints, photos, records, every personal data. This program is titled in a way that makes people believe it's about making communities safer. But it actually directs funding to the military and prison industry while racially profiling people in the communities where is already implemented, while creating distrust on police.
Secure Communities sends the message that ALL immigrants are potential criminals, it affects all immigrants who are deatined even before they are found guilty of any crime, and push them into the prison system as criminals and subject for deportation. President Obama wants this program to be used across the U.S. by next year. Read more at Center for Constitutional Rights.
I have posted a video where I ask people to get involved in the immigration crisis, learning and why these racist laws are only punishing the victims of a corrupted and broken system which starts in BOTH sides of the border. People must demand Congress and president Obama to take action. So I'm getting a lot of hate messages, some of them are warning me that the Minutemen will take charge of the borders in Arizona eventually.
Well, there is a new law in Arizona, the HB-2162 which would give state funds to civil militias to secure the borders. Read more here. This is really serious. The people behind the anti-immigrant war are radical, fanatics, extremist White supremacists, they are well armed, funded and organized. Watch this:
Congressmember Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) wrote this for The Huffington Post:
"In Phoenix, Tucson, and across the state, people in Latino neighborhoods are afraid to leave their houses, afraid to be apart from their children for even a minute, and afraid to walk the streets because they feel their arrest on suspicion of being an undocumented immigrant could happen at any moment. It is a horrifying glimpse at what our future holds across the country if we continue down the path the Obama administration is leading us on immigration."
We Must Stand Against this War on Immigrants
Several campaigns are being organized across the U.S. to defend immigrants, for instance Alto Arizona and Presente allow you to contact Congress and the White House. My friends in several cities are calling me saying that churches across the nation are organizing to help immigrants. It seems that there will be more raids and incarcerations across the country, but civil society will stand up and it will promote civil disobedience if necessary.
Tobias Barrington Wolff who is a Professor of Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and a LGBT activist, wrote this morning via email:
Friends and colleagues,Last month, I met this immigration attorney in Queens, NYC who said that her office is flooded with cases of entire families who have been in this country for decades, and now are being deported. This happens in big cities, imagine small towns across the US!
I have just finished reading through the text of the law that has been enacted in Arizona targeting undocumented immigrants. I have been studying the laws of the United States and working on civil rights issues for fifteen years, but I have never seen a more appalling and dehumanizing statute in present-day America than this measure.
It is not merely that this statute declares an entire class of human beings to be inherently criminal -- trespassers on all public and private land in Arizona because of their status. It is not merely that the law requires police and other law enforcement agents in Arizona to treat an entire population as presumptively criminal on the basis of their race and appearance. It is not merely that the statute effectively requires lawful immigrants to carry papers wherever they go in order to avoid arrest and detention, as if we were living in apartheid-era South Africa or half-slave / half-free pre-Civil War America.
What is yet more appalling is this: If, tomorrow, every undocumented immigrant in Arizona simply left or disappeared, the economy of that state would collapse. The purpose of this law is not to get rid of all undocumented immigrants. The purpose of this law is to disempower all brown-skinned immigrants in Arizona, turning them into a third-class group who must live in constant fear of government and are subject to arbitrary abuse and exploitation.
LGBT people know what it means to be declared by statute to be inherent criminals -- to be told that we are illegal people. Transgender people know what it means to be told that their very being, dress or appearance makes them inherently suspicious and subject to arrest and detention.
We must stand up against this law, and we must do so loudly and strongly.
PLEASE TAKE ACTION
These are websites where you can send messages to Congress and the White House to take in immediate action:We immigrants are not all delinquents and criminals and we are not the cause of the problems of this nation, as we are presented today. People, please we need to show that the United States laws is not about police brutality and military industry profits, but true justice, solidarity and compassion.
Seven other ways to help
There will be rallies this Saturday May 1 in many cities.
In Washington, DC, we will meet at the National Mall at Constitution Ave NW & 15th Street NW. We will join four undocumented students have walked from Miami to DC to demand immigration reform. Many groups are joining.
We need to tell Arizona and Homeland Security Department to stop racism and war against immigrants now. We all have the power to change this madness!