Marching Next Week for Compassionate Immigration Reform
I work for immigrant rights because there need to be people who are willing to use the political, financial, and social power that they have in this country to support those who face discrimination. This is not charity work, it is solidarity work. We must be there to say that the demands for just and humane treatment, for compassionate inclusion and loving acceptance, must be heard and honored. I stand with immigrants so that they remain empowered to assert their right to be granted equality and opportunity.
That is why I will be marching for compassionate immigration reform next week in Philadelphia. This rally is one of the ‘echo events’ being held all around the country in concert with the huge rally for immigration reform in Washington, DC on April 10th. Our partners in the immigrant community have asked for the “Love People” to join them—we must heed their call!
If there isn’t an event in your area, you can still make your voice heard! Click here to ask your members of Congress to support compassionate immigration reform.
As a seminarian, my faith calls me to be with those who are denied the recognition of their full humanity. My evolving call to ministry is one of affirmation, one that moves me to recognize the value of every being and to advocate for the rights that all people deserve regardless of class, creed, gender, ethnicity, or citizenship. For me, to stand on the side of love is to stand on the side of just immigration reform. To stand on the side of love is to celebrate the fact that we are one human family, that we are all miracles created out of and built for love. To stand on the side of love is to stand on the side of change when any members of our human family are mistreated or abused. It is to stand with those who have been otherized and oppressed, to move outside of our comfort zone and into the beautiful messiness of justice-making. When I stand alongside individuals whose lives depend on immigration reform, I stand for the justice and love that I know we as a society are capable of enacting.
I urge people to listen to stories. As you hear the stories of the DREAMers, of the families being split apart, as you meet more immigrants fighting for their human rights, you get to know them not as immigrants but as people. You realize that we are all working towards similar goals. We all want to lead happy and fulfilling lives, we all want to feel at home, to make sure our loved ones are safe and healthy. We all want to thrive.
Love keeps families together. Love respects the inherent worth and dignity of all people. Love knows no borders.
Ranwa is a seminarian at Union Theological Seminary, Vice President of the First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia Board, and serves on the Immigration Task Force of the Unitarian Universalist Pennsylvania Legislative Advocacy Network.
PS: Don’t forget to send us your photos from the event!
The message above went out on Tuesday, April 2, 2013 to Standing on the Side of Love supporters. You can sign-up for these emails here.