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TIME FOR MASSIVE WELL ORGANIZED CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE & OTHER BILINGUAL ARTICLES IN 2017 BY ELVIRA ARELLANO

Elvira Arellano, a friend of mine since taking sanctuary in Rev. Walter Coleman's church in Chicago not long after her terrifying arrest in late September 2001, has been called "the Rosa Parks of Latino communities."

¿Ha llegado el momento para la desobediencia civil? Elvira Arellano (English Version Follows Below) Published on March 14, 2017 https://www.linkedin.com/in/rev-walter-l-slim-coleman-10350615
Muchas de las tácticas de desobediencia civil que se empleaban en el contexto del movimiento pro derechos civiles y en el movimiento para acabar con el “apartheid” en Sudáfrica no se han empleado mucho en la lucha para los derechos de los indocumentados. El motivo es que, por supuesto, los indocumentados no han querido exponerse a las acciones represivas de los que los pretenden deportar. El “santuario” debe considerarse como una excepción, y no se olviden que las acciones de santuario se tomaron conjuntamente entre personas sin y con papeles.
Este lunes pasado el congresista Luis Gutiérrez y mi pastora Emma Lozano, juntaron ocho lideres para reunirse con el director de ICE (la Migra) en Chicago. Como no pudieron conseguir respuestas satisfactorias a sus preguntas sobre el futuro del programa DACA y los resultados de varios casos de personas amenazadas con la deportación, el Congresista y los otros integrantes de la delegación optaron por permanecer y llevaron a cabo un plantón en la mera oficina de la Secretaría de Seguridad Interna. Yo esperaba afuera del edificio con Francisca Lino, madre de cinco niños ciudadanos de los Estados Unidos, que espera su deportación en junio de este año, y con Miguel Pérez, padre, cuyo hijo tiene mica de residencia legal y es un veterano de la guerra en Afganistán, y también ha recibido una orden de deportación. Esperaban afuera hasta el momento en que se enteró que ICE ni siquiera desea hablar de sus casos. Cuando el congresista negó abandonar la oficina, oficiales de Seguridad Interna le amenazaron a él y a la reverenda Lozano con el arresto. Inclusive esposaron al congresista y hacían preparativos para meterlo en la cárcel. Pero luego llegaron ordenes de “los de arriba” y le quitaron las esposas.
El congresista explicó: “la lección que debemos aprender de los acontecimientos de hoy es que cuando los ciudadanos de los Estados Unidos se levanten para oponerse a las deportaciones y separación de familias, que son actos inmorales e injustificables, Seguridad Interna retira”.
En los Estados Unidos existen 5 millones de niños que son ciudadanos pero que tienen padre o madre o los dos sin papeles. Millones de personas pertenecen a familias de estatus mixto y que incluyen personas sin papeles. ¡Prácticamente todo un ejército! El movimiento de santuario es un movimiento importante de solidaridad y desobediencia civil. Creo que hay que tomar el próximo paso, él de desobediencia civil, masiva y organizada. La desobediencia civil es una táctica que lleva muchos años de haberse practicado y constituye una respuesta moral a las leyes y políticas injustas. Por medio de la desobediencia civil el pueblo dice que no aceptamos ser gobernados por leyes injustas. No damos permiso que se impongan leyes que violan las normas de la humanidad. La desobediencia civil expresa que un gobierno que atropella a los derechos humanos ha abandonado su derecho de gobernarnos.
La desobediencia civil significa interrumpir las operaciones de la política de deportación masiva que la administración de Trump ya está llevando a cabo. A aquellas personas que dicen que debemos simplemente esperar hasta las próximas elecciones, nosotros respondemos que los millones de indocumentados que trabajan y pagan impuestos en este país no pueden ejercer al sufragio, y los que están en el proceso de ser deportados y ven sus familias separadas no tienen la opción para esperar hasta las próximas elecciones.
Cuando, a las cinco de la tarde, el congresista Gutiérrez y los otros integrantes de la delegación salieron de las oficinas de ICE, las cameras de la prensa los esperaban. Hicieron sus declaraciones y luego después, camiones llenos de jóvenes latinos alumnos de las escuelas secundarias los rodeaban y choreaban “alto a las deportaciones” y “si se puede”. Vinieron a evitar la destrucción de sus familias y comunidades por parte del gobierno. En mi opinión estos jóvenes también representaban el mensaje que llevaba el congresista: Los ciudadanos que tienen parientes indocumentados tienen el poder de hacer imposible que este gobierno funcione por medio de movilizaciones masivas de desobediencia civil. Los gobiernos existen por medio del consentimiento de los gobernados. La resistencia requiere de que el racismo y la injusticia no nos pueden gobernar. Ahora mismo tenemos que ir más allá de los gritos de “alto a las deportaciones”. Conviene parar las deportaciones por medio de la desobediencia civil organizada.

ENGLISH VERSION: Time for Civil Disobedience? By Elvira Arellano Many of the tactics of civil disobedience which were used in the civil rights movements and in the movement to end apartheid in South Africa have not been used in the struggle of the undocumented. The reason is that the undocumented have not wanted to put themselves in the hands of those who would deport them. Sanctuary was an exception – and sanctuary was an action taken jointly by those with and those without papers.
Civil disobedience has been effective through the ages because it brings forward the best in humanity. This Monday, Congressman Luis Gutierrez and my pastor, pastora Emma Lozano, assembled eight leaders to meet with the Director of ICE in Chicago. Unable to get answers to their questions about the future of DACA and the outcome of several deportation cases, the Congressman and the delegation determined to stay, staging a sit in in the midst of Homeland Security offices. Outside I waited among the media with Francisca Lino, a mother of five U.S. citizen children scheduled for deportation in July and Miguel Perez Sr., whose son is a green card veteran of Afghanistan now under an order of deportation. They waited hopefully until the word came out that ICE would not even discuss their cases. When the congressman refused to leave, Homeland Security officials threatened to arrest him and Rev Lozano. In fact they put handcuffs on the Congressman and prepared to take him to jail. Then orders came down and they took the handcuffs off.
The Congressman later explained that “The lesson we should learn today is that when U.S. citizens stand up to the immoral and indefensible deportations and separation of families, Homeland Security must back down.”
There are over five million U.S. citizen children with at least one undocumented parent. There are millions of people who are part of extended families which include undocumented individuals. That is an army! The sanctuary movement is an important movement of solidarity and civil disobedience. I believe that we need to go the next step: mass organized, civil disobedience.
Civil disobedience is an age old tactic based in a moral response to immoral and unjust laws. Civil Disobedience says that we will not be governed by unjust laws. We will not consent to live according to laws that violate humanity. It says that a government that violates human rights gives up the right to govern us.
Civil Disobedience means interrupting the operations of the mass deportation policy now being carried out by the Trump administration. For those who suggest that we should all just wait to the next election we simply say that the millions of the undocumented who work and pay taxes in this country do not have the right to vote – and those who are being deported and separated from their families cannot wait until the next election. As Congressman Gutierrez and the delegation emerged from the ICE building at five o’clock they were met with the waiting cameras. They made their statements and then busloads of young Latinos, high school students, surrounded them with chants of “stop the deportations”, “si se puede!” They came to stop this government from tearing apart their families and their community! I believe these young people represented the message that the Congressman was trying to deliver: The U.S. citizen family members of the undocumented have the power to bring our movement to the next step: mass organized civil disobedience! Governments exist because of the consent of the governed. Resistance means we must become ungovernable by injustice and racism. We need to do more, now, than shout “Stop the Deportations”. We need to stop them through well organized actions of civil disobedience!

STOP ICE ABUSES NOW https://www.facebook.com/Arellano.Elvira/ familias-unidas-us@googlegroups.com sanctuarymovement@googlegroups.com

The recent “shock arrest” of an Arizona mother of U.S. citizen children at a routine supervision “check-in” reveals the cruel and unusual punishment that hard working parents of U.S. citizen children are being subjected to. Under supervision for non-violent immigration offenses, individuals in our community are required to check in with ICE on a regular basis. Some have not obtained attorneys to file legal motions in their cases. When they arrive to stay in compliance with the supervision, they are arrested, disrupting and traumatizing their families.
La Fuerza Juventud, the youth arm of Familia Latina Unida, raised this issue at their regular “moral Monday” protest in front of ICE this week in Chicago. “The confused and confusing deportation “shock policy” seems to be aimed at putting our whole community in fear and destabilizing our families,” they said Monday.
The Trump administration has recently eliminated the Obama enforcement priorities, making any person in this country without authorization vulnerable to deportation. While the President persists in saying that the administration is only going after violent criminals and “bad hombres”, he has unleashed ICE agents to arrest and deport anyone, including hardworking parents of U.S. citizen children. The “shock arrests” at check-ins are a convenient way for ICE agents to boost their deportation numbers.
Each time the President or his spokespersons are asked if they are initiating a mass deportation campaign they deny it. They deny it because the great majority of U.S. citizens are opposed to deportations that separate families, especially the parents of U.S. citizen children or DACA recipients. Unleashing ICE agents to enforce immigration laws without any priorities in fact is mass deportation. Announced plans to add another 10,000 agents and to establish new detention centers are in fact preparation for the mass deportation of eleven million people, almost all of whom are law abiding, hardworking people.
The traumatic shock to families and children that comes with a surprise arrest at a routine check-in is a violation of basic human rights. We all know the effects of children on these shock arrests. An orderly deportation process that respects the due process rights of individuals allows for parents to prepare their children for the greatest trauma in their young lives – losing a mother or a parent.
We have lived with a system of undocumented labor for decades. Employers, banks, landlords, the social security administration have all participated in this system to their benefit. Note the signs advertising auto insurance with “no drivers license needed.” With all the institutions of the nation participating in this system why does the government choose to focus only on the most vulnerable and the least culpable people caught in this system of undocumented labor?
The youth say that if ICE does not agree to a humane policy around supervision check-ins they will organize task forces to accompany those who are subjected to check-ins.
The youth also raised another issue that affects many of their friends and school mates. In Chicago and other cities, police make random stops, ask for identification and then make out “gang identification” cards on individuals with no other evidence of gang affiliation than that they are in a neighborhood in which gangs are present. The youth cited cases of individuals who were denied DACA because of these gang identification cards even though they had no arrests or convictions.
In these cases, the criminalization of our youth is accompanied by deportation. Trump has again authorized the use of local police as immigration agents through the secure communities program. The importance of sanctuary cities which refuse this use of local police becomes especially clear.
While we fight the policies of mass deportation we must attack specific practices that both facilitate mass deportation and expose the President’s policy for what it is. We cannot allow the introduction of mass deportation, which is not generally supported, under the cover of “going after the criminals.” That means we must oppose the specific practices publically and militantly – by legal and direct action.
The undocumented cannot wait until the next election. We must act now to mobilize our popular majority to defend our community!

Elvira Arellano, "Disciplina Entre las Elecciones" (English Version Follows Below “Disciples for the 'In-Betweens'”) January 24, 2017 https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/sanctuarymovement/119fdc2.7e35c90.45b9...
El pueblo se movilizó durante la inauguración de Trump el viernes, y viernes el siguiente día en Washington D.C., en Chicago y en el país entero tanto en pequeñas poblaciones como en las grandes urbes; hubo movilizaciones en Europa y América Latina también. La mayoría de los comentaristas liberales y personajes del Partido Demócrata exigieron que los que marchaban participen en las elecciones también. Claro, que esto es un consejo bueno para los latinos y sobretodo para los que cumplen 18 años, con un total de un millón por año. No podemos parar al presidente Trump si simplemente esperamos hasta las próximas elecciones.

El su gabinete de multimillonarios, además del Congreso con su mayoría republicana no van a perder tiempo en lanzar sus ataques en contra de la gente humilde, en su afán de reorganizar este país a beneficio de sus amigos en las grandes empresas y para satisfacer los impulsos racistas de un sector muy confuso de su base político. El lunes empezó el ataque al cuidado de salud. La afirmación falsa de Trump de que Hillary Clinton ganó la mayoría del voto popular porque los “ilegales” votaron masivamente por ella, forma el pretexto para toda una nueva serie de leyes cuyo propósito es se suprimir el voto. Para encabezar la Secretaría de Justicia muy probablemente no seguirá investigando casos de racismo en las corporaciones municipales de policía. Entre elecciones, van a suceder cosas muy malas, antes de que los que pueden votar ejercen su sufragio de nuevo.
Mientras que se esperen las próximas elecciones, los ataques de Trump en contra los inmigrantes van a ser los más duros. Su ayudante a cargo de relaciones con la prensa ha anunciado que “por mientras tanto” el enfoque de la nueva administración será la deportación de personas consideradas un peligro para esta nación. Así respondió a una pregunta acerca de los y750,000 “soñadores”. Tal vez Trump piensa esperar un ratito antes de tratar de anular la DACA, pero no será mucho tiempo hasta que Trump elimine la orden de Obama de proteger a los soñadores.
No debemos olvidar lo dicho por Trump, que planea deshacer esta nación de unos 3 millones de “delincuentes” y “hombres malos”. Pero el número que tienen antecedentes criminales, incluyendo delitos relativamente menores como conducir un auto en condición de ebriedad son solo unos 600,000. Esto significa que Trump piensa deportar casi dos y medio millones en la primera ola de deportaciones.
Una de las iniciativas más importantes contenidas en las órdenes ejecutivas de Obama fue formular un mecanismo para usar la discreción del gobierno en casos migratorios de “baja prioridad” para deportación. Personas vinculadas con el equipo de transición de Trump han dicho que muy pronto se va eliminar este aspecto. En otras palabras personas que carecen de antecedentes delictivos, que tienen hijos nacidos en los Estados Unidos, un trabajo seguro, pueden ser detenidos y deportados.
El sector indocumentado carece del lujo de esperar hasta las próximas elecciones. El lunes por la tarde cas mil personas acudieron a mi iglesia para escuchar al último informe del congresista Luis Gutiérrez. El congresista nos explicó que crece respaldo en ambos partidos por un proyecto de ley “puente” para proteger a los que benefician de DACA. Pero tal ley tomará tiempo de aprobarse y además, no protegerá las familias de los soñadores.
El congresista terminó diciendo que otros deben unir con el para posiblemente abandonar su propia libertad como protesta. Quiso decir que la gente debe llenar las cárceles como forma de protesta.
Luego como nuestra reunión continuaba reclutábamos “defensores” y “movilizadores”. Los defensores son los que ayudarán a personas detenidas a que presenten su caso en la corte. Los “movilizadores” serán capacitados a movilizar la gente en la forma más rápida posible para apoyar a personas detenidas o que tienen que ir a la corte. Para poder sobrevivir durante los próximos tres años tenemos que erguir una resistencia fuerte.
Claro que esta resistencia va a necesitar más marchas masivas como las de las mujeres el sábado pasado. La solidaridad de millones para reivindicaciones que incluyeron justicia para las familias indocumentadas y los soñadores, posiblemente ha demorado las planeadas acciones de Trump en contra de los soñadores. Es cierto que aquellas marchas tengan su impacto con los republicanos en el Congreso. ¡Hay que seguir marchando!
Pero marchas y preparativas para las próximas elecciones no bastan para proteger a los indocumentados. Esto requiere también la preparación y la acción directa, defensas bien preparadas en las cortes de inmigración, y movilizaciones de emergencia con desobediencia civil. Montar una defensa de este índole requiere personas comprometidas.
Defensas legales creativas podrían abarrotar a las cortes durante meses y hasta años, hasta el punto que las próximas elecciones puedan frenar a la agenda de Trump. También después de los ataques terroristas del once de septiembre de 2001 tuvimos que bregar con medidas de “mano dura” también, y muchos que fuimos arrestados durante aquel episodio hemos logrado evitar la deportación.
Tomando en cuenta el problema de los años entre las elecciones pasadas y las que vienen, me inspira con esperanza la acción de mi hijo y los otros jóvenes que abandonaron las aulas secundarias el viernes para tomar el centro de Chicago. Algunos de los manifestantes son soñadores pero la mayoría son ciudadanos de los Estados Unidos. Los ciudadanos no necesitan temer ser detenidos en una protesta. Ellos se han comprometido a movilizar acciones directas e inmediatas cuandoquiera que alguien cae preso. Están dispuestos a ir a la cárcel, y hasta quedar ahí.
Los equipos de acción director, o sea los defensores y los movilizadores, son los “discípulos” que necesitamos. Lo primero que hizo Jesucristo en organizar su campaña para salvar a su pueblo fue reclutar a los 12 apósteles, y luego reclutar a 72 más. Ruego que nuestros jóvenes acepten el reto como san Pedro, para salvar a nuestro pueblo.

ENGLISH VERSION: Disciples for the “In-Betweens” The people mobilized on Friday during Trump’s Inauguration – and then on Saturday in Washington DC, in Chicago and across the country in big cities and small towns, in Europe and throughout Latin America. Most of the liberal commentators and democratic politicians urged those who marched to “get involved” in elections. Certainly this is good advice for Latinos, especially the one million new eighteen year olds who become eligible to vote each year! Waiting until the next election, however, will not stop President Trump, his cabinet of billionaires and the Republican congress, from attacking the basic survival of ordinary people. They have already begun reorganizing this country to the benefit of their friends in big business while still keeping the support of Trump’s misguided base of support through appealing to racism and bigotry . The attack on health care began Monday. Trump’s claim yesterday that Clinton’s popular vote majority came from voter fraud from “illegals” is laying the foundation for new waves of voter suppression laws. Trump’s choice of a racist bigot to head the justice department is unlikely to sustain the justice department’s investigation of racism in local police departments. Bad things will happen in between elections – before those who can vote get a chance to get back to the polls.
During the “in-betweens”, waiting for the next election, none of these things however will hit as hard and as quickly as Trump’s immigration attacks. His press secretary announced that “for the time being” the administration would focus on deporting criminals and those who are dangerous to the nation. This was in answer to a question about the 750,000 dreamers. So maybe Trump will wait a little while before going after DACA – but not too long before he erases Obama’s executive order protecting them.
We should recall that Trump has said his effort to deport “criminals” and “bad hombres” should get rid of about three million people. Those with criminal convictions, including minor offenses like DUI’s, only number about 600,000. That leaves almost two and a half million deportations that Trump is planning in the first wave.
One of the most important of Obama’s executive orders created a process to apply for discretion of those in “low priority for deportation.” Those close to Trump’s immigration team say the executive order creating discretion will be gone shortly. That means that even if you are of a low priority – no criminal convictions, U.S. born children, a steady job – you could be picked up and slated for deportation.
The undocumented cannot wait until the next election. Nearly a thousand people crowded into my church Monday night to get the latest information from Congressman Gutierrez. The congressman explained that bi-partisan support for a “bridge act”, a bill to protect DACA recipients, was gaining support. That bill will be slow coming to actually be passed and it will not protect the families.
The congressman finished his speech saying that others should join him in being willing to “give up their liberty.” That is shorthand for filling up the jails in protest.
As our meeting continued we recruited “defenders” and “mobilizers”. Defenders will be trained to prepare people to present their case in court if they are arrested. Mobilizers will be trained and deployed to mobilize quickly if someone is arrested – or if they have a court date. If we are to survive these next years we must build a resistance.
For sure, this resistance will require more massive marches like the one called by the women Saturday. The solidarity of millions which included support for the undocumented families and for the dreamers may have in fact backed off Trump from acting immediately against the dreamers. Those marches will certainly affect the Republicans in Congress. We will need to keep organizing those marches.
But marches and preparation for the next election will not protect the undocumented. That will take preparation and direct action, informed defenses in immigration court and emergency mobilizations of civil disobedience. That kind of defense takes dedicated people.
Creative legal defenses can jam up the immigration courts for months and even years – until elections can stop Trump’s agenda. We faced equally harsh laws and regulation after 9/11 and many of us who were arrested during that period have fought off deportation until today.
Given our problem with the “in betweens”, in between elections, I got a lot of hope from my son and the hundreds of high school students who walked out on Friday and stormed downtown Chicago. Some were dreamers but most were U.S. citizens. They can afford to be arrested. They are committed to take creative and direct actions whenever someone is arrested. They are willing to go to jail – and to stay in jail.
The defenders and the mobilizers – the direct action crews – these are the disciples we need. Remember that the first thing Jesus did when organizing his campaign to save his people was to recruit the twelve disciples – and then to recruit 72 more. I pray that our young people will step forward as Peter stepped forward when Jesus called - to save our people.

"As the World Turns…" by Elvira Arellano

We have been here before – only there is something different now. After 9/11 in 2001 almost the entire nation was living in fear and anger. They were looking for Bin Ladin but they couldn’t find him so they directed their anger at the Mexican immigrant. Only a few days before 9/11 immigration activists were preparing to go the Washington DC to celebrate the passage of a reform law. After 9/11 that legislation died in the Congress. Democrats and Republicans were joined at the hip, intent on driving immigrants from the nation.

We didn’t give up then – and we shouldn‘t give up now. We brought our families before
the nation. We testified in local city councils, county board, state legislatures and before the U.S. Congress. We talked with the unions and the churches. We organized ourselves – and we marched with millions of Latinos – both with and without papers. In Chicago we began the sanctuary movement again. We mobilized and elected President Obama on the promise of immigration reform in the first 100 days.

When President Obama broke his promise we marched and rallied again – until right
before his second election the President gave us DACA for the Dreamers. We fought on in the second term. We won prosecutorial discretion – an enforcement policy that meant ICE would simply close the cases of those with U.S. citizen children and a record of employment – and let them stay. Finally we won a second executive order from the President to extend DACA to the families.

Now we have Trump. He promised to build a wall and deport eleven million people,
even stripping citizenship from those born here to undocumented parents. He campaigned on repealing the executive order that protected the dreamers and he said they would be deported. Now Trump is taking about a fence not a wall. He is saying he will first move to deport those with criminal records and secure the border – then he will decide what to do with the “rest of us.”

What changed? After 9/11 it seemed the whole nation was against us. In this last
election, Clinton and the democrats won the popular vote by over two million votes. To win the Electoral College vote the republicans had to suppress the African American and Latino vote with racist state laws. Trump actually got fewer votes than the previous Republican candidate for President.

Do you remember who campaigned with Trump in Arizona? Yes, it was the infamous
Sherriff Arpao – immigrant killer of Arizona. Latinos put that villain out of office in this election!

Yes the Republicans control both houses of congress and the white house – but they do
not have the support of the majority of the people in this country. We have the numbers – and our numbers increase every day. We will have to fight the deportations every day. We will have to mobilize every time someone is arrested. We have done that before and we can do it again.

The alarm has been sounded and we are wide awake. The world has turned again. This
time – we are starting with the majority on our side.