A Day of Action

There’s lots happening in Arizona today.

Today is the first day of implementation for SB 1070 there are some pretty big rallies and marches being planned by L.A. union leaders and the United Farm Workers.

From the press release:

“If SB 1070 and other similar laws proposed around the country are allowed to go into effect, it would have a negative impact on the nation’s agricultural industry. Arizona produces much of the nation’s winter vegetables. Today somewhere between one-half and three-quarters of the U.S. farm labor workforce is undocumented. Agricultural employment is often the entry point for new migrants to this country. We need to end the fear and help improve the lives of the immigrant farm workers whose sweat and sacrifice bring the rich bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables to our tables. They do the hardest, most difficult jobs other American workers won’t do,” [UFW President Arturo] Rodriguez said.

Chartered buses are on their way to Phoenix as I write this.

Organizers of other rallies are planning to be in attendance without papers and there will most likely be arrests.

Speaking of protest and direct action. One of the best pieces of political theater I’ve seen so far was staged by DREAM Act activists (DREAMers) at Netroots Nation. I think it really drove home the point of what we’re dealing with here. The DREAMers posed as ICE officers and stopped those who looked “European” and asked for their papers before allowing them to enter the Netroots lunch on “Civil Rights in the Modern Era.” They cited an uptick in the number of undocumented European immigrants. People of color, like myself, were waved on through. Check out the video after the jump.


(video courtesy of SumofChange.com)

Most folks rolled with it, yet they definitely acknowledged the uncomfortable feeling of being stopped for no reason. Others were not quite so tolerant and one white gay male blogger, John Aravosis of Americablog, even made a complaint to the Netroots organizers and demanded apologies from the DREAMers. Though I couldn’t tell you what for. Nezua of the TheUnapologeticMexican.org has a great video up on the action and an interview with the young woman Aravosis tried to belittle. The action starts at about 5:30. For the most part, though,  the progressives at Netroots rolled with it. This was a bold action that, unfortunately, may be realized if SB1070 is not rescinded altogether.

Today is an important day for immigration reform. I’m standing with them in solidarity.

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  1. July 30, 2010 at 3:53 am

    I can’t believe I worked today. There is so much shit happening everywhere and I only get to read about it. I’ve never felt this impotent. However, I am glad that there are so many angry, intelligent people out there staging these events, getting the coverage, sharing the news, making a difference and, above all else, educating the plebes about this issue. Cool post. I’m glad to see that you wrote about Aravosis, too. I haven’t seen anybody mention that yet, though in the grand scheme of things, it was more of a personal fault than an indicator of a lapse in LGBT/immigration solidarity.

  2. dciii
    July 30, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    I’m glad you feel empowered now, Tom! Thanks for commenting, too.

    You should check out Nezua’s video. He actually shows a picture of him! I think you’re right about it being a personal fault and not necessarily a lapse, but it should still be noted when someone makes a fool of themselves and insults and offends others while doing so.

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