portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article commentary oregon & cascadia

immigration | labor

Immigration Raids: Standing Up for Neighbors

Two days ago, ICE attacked our neighbors and comrades. They did so in the name of Homeland Security and the federal government. Families were broken apart, parents were ripped away from their children, wives and husbands were torn from their spouses. This is not right. Cascadians, this is an assault on our community, on our comrades. We will not stand for it.
On the night of the attack, hundreds of supporters flooded into St Andrew's Catholic Church to express their outrage, offer support to the detainees, and demand an end to the raids. Even the mayor of this city denounced the assault. Community members are beginning to organize a new Sanctuary movement. Let it grow.

We will stand up to ICE because we recognize that economic imperialism has led to overwhelming pressures on the people of this, and other countries, and that many people are forced by this imperialism to come to the US to perform the "dirty work" for others, so that they can feed their own families. As multi-national interests strip Mexico, Central, and South America of resources and lay bare their economies, as rich Americans flout their wealth and privilege here and abroad, and as mercenary business practices are exported from US boardrooms to villages, factories, and fields across the globe, it becomes more difficult every day for working class people to survive in this new world "order." And so they come, fellow workers, and they become our neighbors, comrades, allies. Together, we become radicalized in our understanding that a very few, very rich people are living off our backs. All of our backs. These few live in luxury while we struggle. Our load is made heavy by their excess. And we are beginning to see this, and to realize that it is up to us to shake them off like a dog might shake off muddy water. We, here at street level, do not care what nation our comrades were born in, or what color their skin is, no matter how much the elite would like us to. It would serve the interests of parasites for us to be fighting with each other, scrounging for crumbs under their table, while they feast off our flesh on white linen. What a rude awakening it will be for them, when they finally realize we're not buying it. THEY are our enemies: The elite. Not our comrades from Mexico and Central America. It is those who would sell us for diamonds, who would bleed us, who would profit from our sweat, it is THEY who are "illegals." Not the people who came to this country to work and raise families. Not our neighbors and comrades and friends. But the elite parasites sucking our energies and resources down their voracious, gluttonous maw.

What a beautiful thing it was to see so many people from all across this community rising up to challenge the authority of ICE to come in here and attack the people of our community like this. We are ready, willing, and able to provide solidarity and mutual aid to those being persecuted by Homeland Security agents. The corporate media can shout through its megaphone about how "aliens" are "coming to steal our jobs!" Let them. Our ears are growing deaf to this kind of hateful propaganda. We ignore this nonsense, and we come together across all the lines that have been artificially applied to us in order to keep us isolated and powerless. There is a revolution brewing here, I think. This is how these things begin.

What a scary moment it must be for our would-be masters, should they look up from their silk napkins in time to see it coming.

No support for the ICE raids from local officials 15.Jun.2007 07:15

Worker

This is actually a pretty cool city, where all our county commissioners are marching in the PRIDE parade on Sunday and our mayor told the feds to fuck off over these raids. The following letter was sent out to all Multnomah County employees yesterday (below). Although it oculd have been more forthright in condemning the raids, it makes it as clear as politicking allows where Multnomah County officials' sentiments are. I wonder if the elite is any more versed in the lessons of history than the American public? Indeed, a revolution is brewing.



Dear Multnomah County Employees,



As you are aware, 170 residents of Multnomah County were detained
yesterday by federal law enforcement agencies. While this incident
raises legitimate questions about immigration policy and law enforcement
actions, my primary concern is the impact on our clients, and the health
and safety of children and other vulnerable people involved.



I believe it is our responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being
of those affected. We have been assured by ICE (Immigration and Customs
Enforcement) that those workers detained who have children will be
released on humanitarian grounds. We will continue to monitor this
through the community organizations responding to this crisis, and fully
expect that children affected will not be put at further risk.



County employees may be contacted by affected families in need of
services. I want you to be aware that Catholic Charities has agreed to
serve as the central point for legal and social service referrals for
those families affected. The contact person is:



Gloria Wiggins

Catholic Charities

El Programa Hispano

(503) 669-8350



The County is committed to provide care and services to all residents of
Multnomah County who come to us for services. I know that in the normal
course of your work you advocate for your clients and their families,
and that many of you have already provided resource information and
support to those most recently in need. I encourage you to continue your
good work on their behalf.

more solidarity 15.Jun.2007 10:51

theresa mitchell

Now we will have to watch the backs of Multnomah County officials, and look out for retaliation, in whatever form, from the Feds. Otherwise the County folks will fall to Neocon intimidation, as so many have. But if we all stay vigilant and strong, the NorthWest at least, can begin to break free. Watch Indymedia, and listen to KBOO News for updates.

Immigration Raids 19.Jun.2007 17:31

Teresa Cardenas

We need to unite as a community, Anglo, Hispanic, and other nationalities alike, to stand up for the rights of immigrants and undocumented workers in our nation. In the raid last week, in which about 160 people were detained, one of those 160 was a dear friend of mine. He was family not only to me but to a dozen people he came in contact during his time in Tigard. My community is distraught due to loosing him. Yet the community of Cornelius lost 10 people! In another community 70 families were separated! I am convinced that the moral, economic, personal, emotional, and social reasons for immigration are much stronger than what the law dictates. We need to urge our senators to support a just and comprehensive immigration reform that protects workers and families.
We don't mean any harm by coming to this country; we are just trying to survive and to keep our families alive.
Remember this is not only an immigration issue, it is a human rights issue.

Photo's from Tacoma Detition Center 19.Jun.2007 19:22

Teresa Teater

A picture is worth a Thousand reasons to stop wasting money and hire documentation workers !!!

NBC Brian Williams announced tonight, that the federal government is now overwhelmed with processing Passports that they required us all to have to get back into America .
They have to scale back the program as they don't have enough money to process us all.

So there is the answer I have said all week long,We dont have enough process workers to handle immigration processing, so why arrest people and waste money housing them or tethering them to ankle bracelets, when we have 15 -20 year old immigration cases pending????.

Get all the federal workers required to process immigants in one building, and do like we did in Portland,Oregon with a program called

"PROJECT CLEAN SLATE !!!!" it worked great !!!! It's better than what BUSH and Congress has to offer.

Would somebody(Mayor POTTER) please back me up on this idea that has already proven it works !!!

Thank-YOU