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Viridiana was able to call in live on to the Democracy Now! program to speak about Broward Transitional Center where she is currently detained.
Listen in here for a longer, more in-depth interview.
And be sure to sign here to demand a full and complete review of each detainee at the Broward Detention center and that all low-priority detainees immediately be released and their cases administratively closed.
Yesterday, 13 undocumented leaders took a stand and in Alabama, risking deportation, against fear caused by the state’s harsh, anti-immigrant laws. They fought back against the oppressive shadows of fear and silence by raising their voices so that others will take heart and take action.
Local news channel WSFA 12 pulled NCDT’s own Viridiana aside to talk about what happened and why these brave leaders undertook yesterday’s action. Check out this powerful footage of what she had to say.
Also, you can support the AL13 by pitching in to their bail fund- every bit helps.
Recently on The State of Things with Frank Stasio, Viridiana pointed out to ALIPAC’s William Gheen that “there are no illegal alien lines at the grocery store”, countering his claim that undocumented immigrants do not pay taxes. That point was reinforced today by this article in the New York Daily News, which points out that undocumented immigrants paid $11.2 Billion last year alone, while General Electric, which earned $14 billion last year, paid exactly $0 in taxes. Aside from sales, excise and property taxes, the IRS issues undocumented immigrants 9-digit ITINs which allow the government to collect income tax from them.
According to Citizens for Tax Justice, “…the new IPC report serves as an important reminder that undocumented taxpayers make important financial contributions to the fiscal health of state and local governments.”
Listen to yesterday’s broadcast here. It’s a lively discussion.
The underpinning of Gheen’s argument is that immigrants are to blame for corporate interference with American politics.
As far as “attrition” being humane, here’s something to remember:
[...] constant wearing down to weaken or destroy (often in the phrase war of attrition)
Feel free to leave your reflections in the comment section.
By José Torres-Don
Last Thursday’s vigil was an opportunity for all of us to reflect on our current situation in North Carolina as an immigrant community. The vigil was held at the same place where just a year before three young women declared a hunger strike challenging all of us to believe and push for our dreams. At the time, they demanded for Senator Hagan to hear their frustration. Needless to say, the Senator did not measure up to the trust and confidence placed in her. However, this time around we came together in support of the seven undocumented youth, two from the NC DREAM Team, who last Tuesday intentionally risked deportation in Atlanta, Georgia through a civil disobedience action. The seven youth demanded that Georgia State University President refuse the ban on undocumented students attending the university. This was the first direct action by undocumented youth since the DREAM Act failed to pass in the Senate. It was an important one–since then our immigrant communities have been under attack at the local level, where we feel it the most, and the only support we hear from a supposedly immigrant-friendly administration is an irresponsible and faint commitment to not deport us.
More than anything, the vigil was a celebration of the undocumented youth empowerment felt throughout the state. We all felt the risk of the action taken, but as we stood there united, we understood clearly the greater risk in maintaining the status quo. We were all reminded that in North Carolina, our urgency is such that our own friends are willing to risk it all in order to give us all our voice back and to not be afraid to stand up and speak our own truth. We reflected on their strength to look fear in the eye and push and lead us to understand our own power. We felt it. We understood our cause at its very core. We welcomed our responsibility to keep pushing ahead for undocumented youth and our parents so that we heal through self-empowerment. This was especially felt when Jose Rico’s family spoke up about their support for him and how proud they were about his leadership and courage.
That night, we renewed our commitment to this fight that at times seems endless but worth it because our dignity and humanity are priorities. To say the least, the courage of the seven undocumented youth is inspiring and the empowerment liberating. Through them we were are all able to scream and now shoulder to shoulder we free ourselves from whatever fear we may have because nothing is more contagious than courage.
Take a minute to get to know the other folks who were arrested in Georgia. They come from different parts of the country, but all stood up against the same injustice together.
[NOTE: The Georgia 7 have been released and we are no longer collecting bail money. Thank you for those who have shown your support.]
Please join us in Raleigh on Thursday, April 7, for a Community Vigil for Immigrant Rights at 6:30 p.m.
We’ll be convening at the corner of Wilmington and Lane Streets downtown, where three brave undocumented young women from our team participated in a 13-day hunger strike last June. One of them, Viridiana Martinez, was arrested along with the Georgia 7 yesterday. Why?
“Rallying and protesting are no longer enough. Remaining in the shadows is no longer acceptable.”
Let’s not allow any more politicians like Senator Kay Hagan, who killed the DREAM Act in December, to continue dictating the reality facing the undocumented community. Everyday we see another family torn apart by deportation for nothing more than going to work or school. Everyday we see another dream deferred because of unjust educational opportunities. Everyday we see another worker denied a fair wage because of their legal status. We can no longer keep quiet. We’ve drawn a line. Whose side will you fall on? Those that are filled with hate and prejudice? Or those that are willing to stand up for justice and fight for the rights of our undocumented communities?
Please join us tomorrow, and tell a friend. El pueblo unido jamás será vencido.