Thursday, April 24, 2008

May 1 Oakland March and Rally

Stop ICE Raids and Deportations!

May 1, 2008 - International Workers Day and March for Immigrant Rights in Oakland!


     **** We are looking for more volunteers to be security during the march!  If you can volunteer your time on May 1 to help the mobilization go smoothly, come to the: ***

MONDAY 4/28 @ 5:30PM
1470 FRUITVALE (Spanish Speaking Citizens Foundation)

     -- 3pm: MEET AT FRUITVALE BART PLAZA for rally & performers
     -- 4pm: MARCH DOWN INTERNATIONAL BOULEVARD (with educational, theatric sights to see en route)
     -- 6pm: ARRIVE AT CITY HALL for a community celebration with speakers, performers, and resources!



We want an immediate end to the ICE raids in our neighborhoods and workplaces.
We also want an end to OPD's escalation of harassment, racial profiling and arrests of immigrants and all people of color under the false premises of 'confronting the rise in crime' and 'protecting our national security'. We call for a redirection of resources away from increasing police presence and towards addressing the root causes of violence and crime in our neighborhoods, such as chronic poverty and systemic racism.


We oppose the Governors budget cuts that will hurt immigrant and all communities on multiple levels. We demand an end to US military aggression abroad and the misuse of social funds at home.  At the state and federal levels, money must be redirected away from war and militarization that displaces millions throughout the third world and instead be put towards social services for grassroots communities.


Immigrant communities have been uprooted and displaced throughout the world, particularly from Third World nations ravaged by war and exploited through the U.S. policies of globalization and military occupation abroad.  For many, this has resulted in resettlement in the U.S.  The current gentrification of longtime ethnic neighborhoods further displaces communities where many immigrants seek decent and affordable housing and shelter, which should be available to all.  We want community control of land and housing.


We want an end to the use of Social Security "No-Match Letters" to fire employees and to repress immigrant workers' efforts to improve workplace conditions.  Each year, the Social Security Administration sends otu letters informing employers when their workers' names and Social Security numbers don't match the administration's records.  These letters don't mean that the workers are undocumented, but employers are increasingly using them to fire or intimidate workers who demand better conditions.  Now the Department of Homeland Security is trying to pressure employers to fire workers who get a No-Match letter.


All of our local elected and prospective politicians in City Hall (and also at the County, State and Federal levels) must be proactive in improving the quality of life in immigrant communities.  Third World immigrant communities are entitled to the same protection rights, and access to basic services as all other residents and will exercise our political power to ensure that our public-elected representatives introduce and support legislation to defend the human rights of all of its constituents.  We demand translation services! We want a true commitment to sanctuary!


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Prediction: This will be an utter failure, with only diehard supporters of illegal aliens marching in the street. With the economy the way it is, it's not likely that very many illegal aliens will be marching with you, as most will be more concerned with earning a buck and the risk of losing their jobs. After all, they are unskilled and competition is tight and most are easily replaced by the next man in line.

If their handlers lose control of the crowd and a riot ensues, it can only hurt your friends more. The march will call illegal immigration to the attention of the public, in a negative way, further damaging your cause. You people totally misunderstand the mood of the vast majority of citizens in this country. Such marches only play into the hands of the aggressive opponents of illegal immigration.

The range of your demands is disasterous in scope. Rather than just ask for the right to stay and work in this country, you demand control over our immigration policies and total destruction of our enforcement efforts. Rather than just put your finger in the eye of those you call restrictionists, you hit the wallets of the middle class with your demands for money, in a time of a need for fiscal austerity. Distractingly, you move far afield from your focus by attacking foreign policy. Take my advice, always start small and work your way up, as your major issue, jobs and legal presence will be lost as sappling in a forest of full grown redwoods. Your strategies have played right into our hands. Thanks professor, et al.

Posted by: Horace | Apr 24, 2008 3:54:11 PM

Let's send all the illegals back to where they came from....They broke our laws in sneaking in to this country, so they should be deported. If an American breaks the law they are prosecuted for the crime they have committed. That is the only way to have equal justice for all!

As far as the companies that hire them they should be fined at least $100,000.00 per illegal they have working for them!

Put Americans to work at a liveable wage!

The American workforce will do any type of work as long as they are paid a fair income for such work!

All these illegals are doing is keeping the working Americans wages low, while the big wheels in the companies get a big bonus for working them!

You may disagree with my view, but only if you are in this country legally, otherwise the rights of Americans should not be bestowed upon you.

Posted by: Layne Hall | Apr 25, 2008 3:36:57 AM

Joe Guzzardi's take on the upcoming marches. From :

May Day Madness From Immigration Anarchists!
By Joe Guzzardi

What’s that definition of insanity attributed to Albert Einstein?

Oh yes, now I remember! “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Apply Einstein’s take on the uselessness of repetitive behavior when the desired outcome never materializes to our Open Borders adversaries and one can only conclude that they are—well, insane.

Perhaps “insane” is too strong.

Or then again, maybe it’s not.

Whether it’s crazy or it isn’t, I wonder, given the abject failure of previous marches and public demonstrations demanding “amnesty now,” what immigration enthusiasts—both in the U.S. and Mexico—could possibly be thinking as they organize yet another May 1st circus.

In my home state of California, no fewer than 23 cities will host pro-amnesty marches, including three in Los Angeles and two in San Diego.

To see if your city is one of the unlucky ones, check the complete list of locations here.

The master plan includes the typical protesting and Mexican flag-waving that we’ve grown to know and love.

An organization called “Latino Families United Without Borders” and whose motto is “Together We Are The New Majority” announced their demands.

Stop me if you’ve heard them before:

Legalization for all now!

Stop the separation of families!

Health care for every family!

Vote for those who cannot vote!

According to the Los Angeles-based Spanish language daily La Opinion’s (wildly optimistic) projections, “mobilizations” will occur in 200 cities with the backing of 1 million people. [Líderes migrantes piden a Calderón apoyar marchas, By Gardenia Mendoza Aguilar, La Opinion, April 10, 2008, Spanish only]

No “mobilization” is complete without a call from anarchists for illegal immigrants to stay home from work, to boycott American products and stores, to keep their children out of school (a possible violation of state compulsory attendance requirements) and sundry other nonsense that is at best impractical at best and at worst impossible.

South of the border, none other than Elvira Arellano, the bad penny of the “justice for immigrants” crowd and a member of the very same “Latino Families United Without Borders,” has resurfaced just in time for May Day.

Here’s what Arellano’s up to.

Speaking from the Cancun Airport, where she landed after returning from a visit to Cuba, Arellano announced that her dual citizen anchor baby son Saúlito would return to Chicago, the scene of their crimes to lead that city’s May 1st march.

Then, according to his mother, Saulito will proceed the next day to Washington D.C. “to participate in a lobbying effort before the House of Representatives, where he will deliver the demands of reform to the U.S. immigration laws that the undocumented Latin-Americans want, 12 million of whom are Mexicans.” [Cambiar ley migratoria del pais, demanda Elvira Arellano, By Mauricio Conde Olivares, La Jornada, April 6, 2008, Spanish only]

If demanding, lobbying and crazy anti-American rhetoric seems familiar to you—and I’m sure it does—it’s because we’ve been subjected to it steadily for at least five years.

At first, we patriots feared that tens of thousands of illegal immigrants participating in organized protests across the country might intimidate Congress into passing amnesty.

But not only did that not happen, the exact opposite turned out to be the case.

Many Americans, once passive fence-sitters, first became seriously engaged in the patriotic immigration reform battle in the summer 2003 when the ludicrously and insultingly named “Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride” launched from nine major cities to transport busloads of aliens who bravely “came out of the shadows” bent on protesting and demanding en route across the country.

I personally witnessed the “freedom riders” take off from downtown Los Angeles, spurred on by virtually every political, religious and workers’ organization that you can name.

The riders, many of whom I am certain had their way paid for by the subversives who endorsed the event, arrived in New York via Washington D.C. to enormous mainstream media fanfare.

In Corona Park, Queens labor leader May Chen said to the crowd: “In a few intense months we have challenged and changed America's attitudes about immigrants.” [Freedom boards the buses; immigrant workers' freedom ride revives debate, New Internationalist, by Mark Engler, Nov, 2003]

A Lehman University professor of black studies and a true1960s freedom rider, Edward Culvert, [Email him] speculated that that advanced technology would bring the immigration version of the Civil Rights march to a much wider and supportive audience.

But despite predictions by Chen, Culvert and others that the “freedom ride” would “change American’s attitudes” or reach a more “supportive audience,” it never happened. After the groups broke up, little more was heard from them.

Three years later, pro-amnesty advocates laid two more massive eggs.

The 2006 May 1st “Great American Boycott,” as it was billed was a big, fat zero.

The announced goal was not only to paralyze the U.S. economy but also to shut down ports, airports and major highways.

Not even close…business as usual on all fronts.

But just one failure in 2006 didn’t dampen their immigration enthusiasm. Amazingly, the Open Borders gang, despite hitting its head against a brick wall, tried the same old, same old on Labor Day …with the by-now predictable dismal failure.

Again, and incredibly, in 2007, organizers made another futile effort to create pressure for their cause, although by this time virtually no one paid attention.

What these imagined show of force demonstrations generate is a far cry from what their promoters hope for.

As I wrote in my 2003 column: “I’m so enthusiastic about what the ‘ride’ means for us because, historically, the more up front and in the headlines the gripers are, the less success they have.”

Although it’s hard to envision how much less effective this year’s amnesty marches could be than the four very public failures in five years, that’s exactly what I foresee.

Here’s why:

With a presidential election on the horizon, no immigration legislation will be moved forward this year. Nor will it in 2009, given the issue’s toxicity. Congress will completely ignore the agitators.

Marches are old news even for the gullible, pro-immigration media. The story has been told; no one bought it. You’ll read fewer nauseating immigration “sob-stories .”

If the “trend is our friend” as Wall Street traders like to say, then the other side is doomed. In 2006, about a million of protesters showed up nationwide. But by 2007, only a tiny fraction of that total participated. Look for 2008 to have the smallest turnout of them all.

Given their disastrous history, why would the so-called immigrants rights activists go back to the same dry well?

Are they stupid? Are they stubborn? Are they stupid and stubborn?

Who really knows? And who really cares?

The important thing: they’re failures.

We opened with an Einstein observation that provides important insights into the other side’s mentality.

Let’s close with some valuable advice we should heed from Napoleon Bonaparte:: “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake”

Posted by: Publius | Apr 26, 2008 6:17:54 AM

Doomed to ignominious failure. The Chicago Tribune take on the marches:

Interest in immigration rallies wanes as groups focus on other methods of activism: But many leaders remain committed to marching
Sunday, April 27, 2008; Posted: 08:51 AM 7 Stocks You Need To Know For Tomorrow -- Free Newsletter
Apr 27, 2008 (Chicago Tribune - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- -- It's been slow going for Armando Pena as he hits up Waukegan's Latino-owned businesses to drum up donations for next week's Immigration march in Chicago. He leaves a Mexican restaurant with $20. He gets another $10 from a beauty parlor. The Azteca bakery ponies up $620, but rejections are more common.

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"I'm getting a lot of no, no, no's," he said.

The massive Immigration marches of 2006, including the May 1 rally that brought 400,000 people to Grant Park, helped drive Immigration reform to the top of the national agenda and gave new focus to the immigrant community in the Chicago area.

Two years later, Spanish-language morning talk shows are buzzing about a new march. But some community leaders in the suburbs, a vital source of support in past demonstrations, are expressing doubts about whether massive rallies are the right tactic this year.

With five days, supporters point out that there is still time to organize a strong showing. Earlier marches picked up much of their momentum in the final days and hours.

But some veterans of past marches appear to be sitting this one out. In Melrose Park, Rev. Claudio Holzer has made his churches, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel and St. Charles Borromeo, a hub for the growing Latino community with citizenship workshops, a soccer league and a club for young Latinos.

Two years ago, hundreds of his congregants loaded onto 42 buses that left from the churches. This year, like last, only two buses will go.

"I think we have used a lot of energy to promote these marches," Holzer said. "For a lot of people the march season is over. Now, we have to talk about lobbying."

In Chicago last week, activists sought to build momentum by rallying on the first anniversary of a fake ID bust in Little Village. That raid--which sparked community outrage when federal agents, guns drawn, questioned scores of frightened shoppers--re-energized march preparations last spring.

This year, activists again are urging immigrants to channel frustration over workplace raids and deportations around the country and take to the streets.

But fear of that crackdown has dampened some illegal immigrants' activism, say suburban organizers.

Others are divided over whether the marches do more harm than good.

"I think people feel these kinds of public displays of unity are significant and important, but it can also have the opposite effect," said Rev. Gary Graf, the pastor of three predominantly Latino Catholic churches in Waukegan and North Chicago.

"What offends people . . . is that you see [marchers] holding these placards and flags and saying, 'Give us our rights,' " Graf said. "I think in the minds of most citizens the undocumented person doesn't have rights until, in fact, the law changes and gives them access to those rights, and that's why the marches are necessary. . . . It's like a catch-22."

Graf plans to attend the march and is inviting his congregation to join, but he is not promoting it as strongly as in years past.

"I'm trying to play the middle road and say, 'Let's converse, let's educate, let's not provoke those who are in positions to enforce the law,' " Graf said.

Last year, Pena and other march organizers in Waukegan raised more than $7,000 to pay for 11 buses and two vans to the rally.

This year, Pena has again pounded the pavement for donations. But so far his clipboard shows a meager tally: about $1,200, less than what he needs to charter just three buses.

Some businesses have declined to give, explaining money is tight in today's receding economy. Others "think the marches are a waste of time," he said.

"People are afraid that if we keep protesting, the deportations and raids will be worse," said Pena, a house painter from the Mexican state of Guanajuato.

"The businesses are not responding. Maybe it's out of fear," he added. "People are not enthusiastic. They don't feel they want to leave their homes, they don't feel they want to protest or stand up for their rights because no one listens."

The Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, one of the lead organizations behind the first march, has put some of its energy into different kinds of civic engagement.

In the last three years, the coalition has partnered with 35 community organizations to help more than 32,000 immigrants fill out citizenship applications. Since 2004, the coalition and its partners have registered 55,000 new immigrant voters.

"The coalition believes the marches and voter registration are not mutually exclusive. In fact, they reinforce each other," said Juan Jose Gonzalez, field coordinator of the coalition's New Americans Democracy Project. "It's a matter of taking that energy . . . and converting it to civic participation."

Lourdes Espinoza, a march organizer in Aurora, said she has heard divided opinions over the effectiveness of the marches, but she thinks there is plenty of interest.

Some "argue that these mass [rallies] anger the community and we should rather go vote or write letters or make phone calls," she said. "We have already sent letters and made phone calls. I am convinced that the only way we will achieve change is to fight for it."

In Chicago, organizers have sought to increase enthusiasm with a series of news conferences and mini-rallies urging immigrants to come out and march yet again.

"What's at stake is too important," said Young Sun Song, an organizer with the Korean American Resource & Cultural Center in Chicago, speaking to the sole TV news camera present during a recent news conference. "We will keep mobilizing until we pass humane and just comprehensive Immigration reform."

Later, Song said her group would show up at the march with just one bus of Asian immigrants.

Asked whether there was any enthusiasm coming from the suburbs where Korean, Chinese and South Asian immigrants are moving, Song shrugged, saying "not in particular."

Tribune reporter Antonio Olivo contributed to this report.

[email protected]

Posted by: Publius | Apr 27, 2008 5:23:02 PM

Stop sending U.S dollars to Mexico!

Posted by: Dave Hoffman | May 1, 2008 6:25:53 AM


Posted by: Dave Hoffman | May 1, 2008 6:30:29 AM

You have got to be kidding me. Who in Mexico is paying you off? Rights for criminals. I don't know why Homeland Security didn't use the opportunity to arrest those who are here illegally. Every other country in the world would enforce their immigration policy, including Mexico.

Three cheers for the ICE Raids! If you really want to help these people, how about a protest against the corrupt Mexican government and the billionaires who control the Mexican economy?

I guess that would be biting the hand that feeds you.


Posted by: Jen | May 4, 2008 9:56:41 PM

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