Advocates organize to thwart US immigration agents – Chicago Tribune

What’s troubling is that this is necessary in the United States.

Advocates organize to thwart US immigration agents – Chicago Tribune
Phone trees among tools used to thwart federal agents

By Michael Martinez | Tribune staff reporter
2:25 PM CST, March 1, 2008

RESEDA, Calif. – When federal immigration officers visited over three days last October looking for an illegal Salvadoran immigrant, a neighborhood watch kicked into action each time.

Dozens of immigrants, legal and illegal, phoned one another, warning of a raid.

“I called my sister in the building next door and another sister in this building,” said Maria, who said she is an illegal immigrant from Mexico and has two children who are U.S.-born citizens. She asked that her full name not be used. “They came and knocked on doors, but no one answered.”

What have we come to when our people are living in fear? When troops are knocking on doors and performing raids to remove vibrant and productive citizens from our towns and cities? Families siting down to dinner and conversation are living in fear that the knock will come at any minute and they’ll be forced to hide. This is not my country. This is not “my country tis of thee” nor my “sweet land of liberty” – we cannot sing when good people are being punished in a merciless world. It is truly only we the people that can provide the safety net for these migrants that are being hunted by clandestine troops walking among us.

To see this support for our friends and neighbors speaks toward the compassion of many in this country, but is also speaks to the lack of compassion of many others. We have to continue making our voices heard and teaching people that we are on the right side because we listen to our hearts. This is not to say were are not logical as well, but logic cannot give you hope, it cannot give you support, nor can it give you love.

For those that will claim this is ‘against the law’ I say so was harboring fugitive slaves. If the anti-migrant crowd wants to embrace a terrible past I can only feel sorrow and hope that we can, one heart at a time, make them change their minds.

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