Much love and respect to Dreamers Adrift, especially homies Jesús Iñiguez and Julio Salgado.
2014 is upon us, and the journey continues.
Read more at DreamersAdrift.com
2014 is upon us, and the journey continues.
Read more at DreamersAdrift.com
Here is the segment.
Received from the National Immigrant Youth Alliance (NIYA) today:
NIYA Urges Hispanic Caucus to Stand against Fast-Track Deportations
NATIONAL—The Department of Homeland Security is applying an unusually high standard in the credible f ear interviews of the #Dream30 participants at the apparent urging of DHS headquarters in Washington, D.C. Asylum officers typically conduct a screening interview to determine whether an individual has a “credible fear” of persecution if deported. After officers made initial determinations on their interviews last week, 12 of the #Dream30 were re-interviewed yesterday, and the status of their cases remains uncertain.
“Re-interviewing them was unusual and unnecessary,” said David Bennion, one of the attorneys representing the Dreamers. “Some of the agents were hostile toward the Dreamers and appeared to be searching for reasons to deny the cases.”
Three of the remaining #Dream30 have been granted credible fear and should be released in the coming days. We believe that the Obama Administration is trying to discourage us from continuing to use this tactic to counteract its deportations, which will likely break two million before the end of the year, and almost guaranteed before any immigration reform law passes the House of Representatives.
We are urging the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to challenge the administration’s fast-tracking of their deportation. These young people need to come home now, and face incredible danger simply for being Dreamers.
We will not be dissuaded from helping American families come home. Hundreds of young people and their family members have contacted us, some deported by President Obama, and others who felt forced to leave. We will keep on fighting for a way to bring them home.
Tomorrow 30 DREAMers will hold a second border protest to bring more attention to the growing inaction on immigration reform and a deportation policy by the Obama administration that has reached record highs.
While many will question why now, we take a moment a remind everyone that this is all about real lives and real people. While others tell people to stay patient about immigration reform and don’t rock the boat, what about these faces below? What do you tell them?
For a complete list of the people behind these images, go here. Or just click on their stories below.
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Pablo Vivas, Fulfilling a Dying Mothers Wish
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Alberto Peniche, Future Physiologist from Revere, MA
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Marcela, Forced to Leave Chicago to Care for Dying Grandmother
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Alfredo Cornejo Fights to Return to Marion, North Carolina
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Marco Pacheco, Fights to Return to Dallas, Texas
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Sandra: “Peru is Not Safe For Gay People”!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Cesar Ortiz, Future Architect from Columbus, Ohio!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Vidal:”Leaving Was a Mistake; Phoenix is My Home!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Javier, 16, Fleeing Violence in Michoacan!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Israel Rodriguez, Columbia Graduate, Fights to Come Home!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Juan Manuel Roa “Two of my uncles were already kidnapped…”
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Ana Rojas, “They Attacked My Brother with a Machete!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Georgia Misses Dreamer Jonathan!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Lorena Vargas, Banned Until 2022!?!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Edna Diaz, Visa Revoked, Deported and Banned for 5 Years”
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Brandol “Talamontes Murdered My Uncle!”
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Karen is Ready to Come Home & Face Arpaio!
DreamActivist: #BringThemHome: Edgar Torres – “Even the Police Extort us here!”
We hope you take the time to actual READ some of these stories we linked. This ain’t no publicity stunt, people. This is the real deal.
Here’s to the voices that need to be heard.
Story of the deportation of a young girl’s mother, and the pain that comes along with it. The terrorizing of immigrant communities needs to stop. No more broken families!
We get it. In the age of a losing immigration battle, the haters are getting desperate. Such is the case of Bretbart’s Lee Stranahan, whose September 5 piece, “‘DREAMER’ WEBSITE TEACHES ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS ‘HOW TO LIE SUCCESSFULLY’” [yes, ALL CAPS are necessary], makes the shocking conclusion that undocumented people sometimes lie about their status. Hence, these liars are bad for America. We won’t get into too much details about the piece, but you have to love phrases such as “the radical website Dream Activist” and the fact the DREAMers are actually “part of the aggressive pro-illegal immigration ‘Dreamer movement’ that is leading the fight for ‘comprehensive’ immigration reform, with a boost from President Barack Obama and many in Congress.”
Now, if only Stranahan actually KNEW about the DREAMErs, some of President Obama’s most vocal critics. They even call Obama The Deporter-in-Chief. Nonetheless, we thought part of out response should involve some actual intelligence, so we asked prominent immigration lawyer David Leopold to share his thoughts about the Breitbart piece. Here is what Leopold had to say:
In 2011 Jose Antonio Vargas, the Pulitzer Prize winning undocumented immigrant, outed his lack of immigration status in a very moving essay published in the New York Times Magazine. Vargas didn’t hold back about how he survived life in America without legal status. In painstaking detail he recounted the lies and half-truths he was forced to concoct in order to survive, grow, and contribute to his country, the United States of America.
Unfortunately, as was evident from Vargas’ piece, the broken immigration system forces otherwise honest, law-abiding people to be less than truthful and yes, sometimes lie about their personal circumstances. While I have had my differences with Dream Activist over matters of policy and tactics, I think, to be fair, the Breitbart piece should have made it clear that the Dream Activist website post clearly warned DREAMERS not to lie to any government official, stating “Undocumented youth should never lie about their immigration status to anybody or anything ‘official’, such as anything in writing and anything government-related”. That’s a critical caveat, because it’s a clear directive not to engage fraud, material misrepresentations, or other dishonesty when dealing with immigration or other government agencies.
One thing is clear to me, the Dream Activist web post underscores the need to for Speaker Boehner and the House GOP leadership to get serious about fixing the immigration system so that good people can come out of the shadows and continue to give back to the country they have struggled against all odds to enrich.
What a surprise. Breitbart overlooks facts to create a false narrative for the neo-nativists.
For all the numbers and debates about immigration, in the end, it is all about real stories.
Here is one of those real stories.
In 2009, I wrote all my secrets out in a letter and fell asleep in a sketchy motel near the airport in Mexico City. I did it as an exercise to come to terms with my past and prepare for my future at a pivotal moment in my life. My secrets weren’t super gnarly but I thought: If I die tonight, all my secrets will be out in the street and I will have nothing weighing down on me as I travel to the other side. In the morning, I awoke, tore up my past and went ahead with a new era in my life.
In 2013, I took it upon myself to test myself again in solidarity with Dreamers nationwide. I chose to go through a petitioner’s pardon for a green card identical to what the process would be for an upstanding Dreamer. Once an individual gets into the situation where a pardon has to be issued by the federal government for a Dreamer petitioning for a green card, the petitioner needs to put together a package with letters of support from their community connections.
In my mind, this is a matter of great seriousness. It means that I am asking certain folks in my community for a favor that ties me to them for the rest of my life in the most critical moment of my life. As of May 1, my social media connections totaled to the following numbers: Facebook: 223, Twitter: 200, LinkedIn: 166. A total of 589 individuals. Of those, I chose 20 and three of them are not using social media. So, I chose 17/589 of my connections on social media: 2%.
I didn’t choose any of my childhood friends from high school or college because I didn’t want to taint those experiments. I wasn’t politically sensitive during those years and our relationships are not built on that type of sensibility. The “talk” that would ensue about explaining to friends that I wasn’t exactly who they thought I was because I was sans-green-card would create a dynamic that made me uncomfortable. I wondered if I could ask celebrities that I have featured over the last four years in magazine profiles. Pau Gasol came to mind as I was paid to write a cover feature on his philanthropic efforts and believe that his letter of support would have weight. I opted against asking Pau for a favor since we’ve never shared a meal. I wondered if I could ask the hundreds of publicists that I have done favors for but opted against them as well.
At the end of the exercise, I received 20 letters of support from the 20 individuals that read my secret confession. None of my colleagues knew that I was a Dreamer*. They asked me how I was able to graduate from college without the status and I explained to them about AB540. I cried with joy and relief as I received the letters. I thanked them all for their support. I am now in the pocket of 20 individuals who I already had in my virtual pocket. The next day, I contemplated the worth of 98% of my social media connections. I questioned their real worth. I am curious how others feel about the depth of their connections in this age of social media.
PS If you would like your response featured on my radio program, please email [email protected]
* I am not a Dreamer. I am a dual citizen of Mexico and the USA. If it were possible, I would surrender my citizenship down to residency to bring one Dreamer up to residency.
Sergio C. Muñoz at Intelatin is a Mexican artist and impact investor. His artwork is subsidized by his work in social finance to maintain independence. His writings are published locally, nationally and internationally and he hosts a community radio program called The Academic & the Artist that goes out weekly as a cloudcast. The archive of his work is available at Intelatin.com. Any comments or criticisms on this essay can be voiced publicly on Twitter at @Intelatin.
Here is an amazing piece by @CelsonM3.
It is called “Thoughts at 30,000 Feet.” Enjoy.