via @NewsHour: David Uth, senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Orlando, Fla., told reporters at a press conference for the s“Evangelical Day of Prayer and Action for Immigration Reform.”
- Douglas Holtz-Eakin, former Director of the Congressional Budget Office under President George W. Bush
Hours after Senate Gang of Eight’s immigration bill dropped early Wednesday, evangelical leaders from across the country gathered at the Capitol to raise their voices for comprehensive immigration reform.
In the last two years, evangelicals have been a growing voice in the debate over immigration reform, hoping their votes — traditionally a bastion of conservative politics but recently broadening their engagement to gun violence prevention, poverty, and climate change — hold clout on the Hill when it comes to immigration reform.
The Evangelical Immigration Table, a coalition of evangelical leaders from across the political spectrum, gathered hundreds of people from 25 states for a day of action on the Hill. At the morning press conference, the Table representatives did not explicitly endorse or critique the Senate’s new bill. Instead, leaders pledged to “come alongside” any bill that supported their unified set of principals, namely immigration reform that: protects the unity of the immediate family; respects the rule of law; guarantees national security borders; and establishes a path toward legal status and/or citizenship for those who qualify.
Launched in January 2011, the EIT has been instrumental in building a biblically based movement toward a just and merciful immigration system. In addition to issuing what several leaders called their “moral template” for reform last July, the Table also launched the “I Was a Stranger” challenge, a 40-day commitment praying through 40 verses from the Bible on immigration. They also issued a letter urging the president and Senate and House leaders to address comprehensive immigration within the first 92 days of 2013 — a challenge, named for the 92 times the word “immigrant” is used in the Old Testament — on which the Senate has delivered.
Helping to kick off the day of action, Reverend Gabriel Salguero, President of the National Latino Evangelical Coalition, assured those listening on the Hill that the evangelicals gathered in Washington represent the “broadest group of evangelicals.” This coalition is notable as demographics and changing social sentiments continue to diversify the evangelical community. Dr. Richard Land, President of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, agreed, noting there are five thousand southern baptists and nine million Latino evangelicals — suggesting a significant demographic shift in the “lived experience” of immigration in evangelical churches.
The action included a worship service, Hill visits, and regular “prayer walks” to House and Senate buildings, Departments and Bureaus.
USA Today announced on Wednesday the newspaper “will no longer use the term illegal immigrant outside of direct quotes.” The decision by the newspaper with the largest print circulation in the U.S. comes a week after the Associated Press dropped the i-word from their Stylebook.
Video via @ndlon: Will you join us to say #Not1More Deportation?
Today we invite you to be part of the on-going struggle to stop the deportations through arts, organizing, and advocacy.
In recent weeks, we’ve been flooded with cases of people on the brink of being torn from their families and their homes because of unjust deportations. Our communities can no longer tolerate this colossal injustice. We are too strong to allow it to continue.
Together we will pushback against deportations, criminalization, and intolerance. Through a combination of artistic expression and organizing, we’ll accompany people facing deportation who refuse to be victimized and we will build a campaign to achieve equality.
Watch the video, check out the new site, and join us in saying, “Not one more.”
As Fernando, Hector, and Alejandro write, there is no stronger force than “the expression of a people in motion and the artists who accompany us… we need to combine our creativity with our cause.”
The new site is a central hub to:
- support people fighting their own deportations
- collect art that shows the pain of removal and the strength of our community
- share resources for you to exercise the right to remain and stop deportations yourself.
Please visit http://notonemoredeportation.com to get involved.
Opinion Poll via @SmlBizMajority: Small Business Support for Comprehensive Immigration Reform
Across all industries and from one end of the political spectrum to the other, small business owners recognize that without comprehensive immigration reform, U.S. small firms and the economy cannot maximize job creation or revenue generation. New scientific polling shows that the vast majority of them believe our current immigration system isn’t working, and they’re eager to fix the broken system. Our primary job creators agree something must be done because immigration is good for America and good for small business. Moreover, these entrepreneurs show widespread support for the bipartisan immigration reform proposal in the Senate. Read more here.
via @LatinoRebels: Junot Díaz Talks Immigration & “The Superman Question” on “The Colbert Report”
Last night Junot Díaz appeared on “The Colbert Report” talking literature, immigration, and Freedom University, a college for undocumented student. Like he tells Colbert, “Every single immigrant we have, undocumented or documented, is a future American. That’s just the truth of it.”
And then what about the “Superman Question?” You do know that Superman is undocumented, right?
A 4th grader in Berkeley is getting some much needed help from his fellow students who are learning a valuable civics lesson in the process. The students are lobbying the Berkeley City Council, Congress, and even the president, to help bring 10-year-old Rodrigo Guzman back home. Read more here.