Sunday, March 30, 2008

Author Events in New York City, Apr. 3 & 6

1. Apr. 3: Diálogo en Alto Manhattan; Dialogue in Upper Manhattan
2. Apr. 6: Book Signing at Reverend Billy Revival

1. Apr. 3: Diálogo en Alto Manhattan; Dialogue in Upper Manhattan

El 3 de abril, Jane Guskin, co-autora de un libro sobre inmigración, estará en la librería Calíope en el Alto Manhattan para facilitar un diálogo en español con respecto a este tema controvertido. El evento será gratis y abierto al público.

Guskin escribió, con David L. Wilson, The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers (La Politica de Inmigración: Preguntas y Respuestas, publicado en julio 2007 por Monthly Review Press), una guía práctica que responde a preguntas comunes sobre la inmigración con datos y argumentos claros. Sirve de herramienta para la gente que quieran entender mejor el tema y también para los activistas que buscan ser más eficaces en sus respuestas a las actitudes anti-inmigrantes.

Los autores, radicados en la ciudad de Nueva York, han desarrollado un modelo de diálogo basado en el formato del libro que busca animar a las y los participantes a exponer sus preguntas e inquietudes sobre la inmigración, compartir sus experiencias e ideas, y juntos buscar respuestas.

Guskin redacta Immigration News Briefs, un resumen semanal de noticias sobre inmigración. En 1997 Guskin y Wilson ayudaron a fundar la Coalición para los Derechos Humanos de los Inmigrantes, que se movilizó en contra de las redadas de inmigración en los sitios de trabajo. Desde abril 2002 hasta abril 2004, los ahora autores trabajaron para liberar a su colega y amigo, Farouk Abdel-Muhti, de la carcel de inmigración.

En este momento el libro está disponsible solo en inglés, pero la editorial se encuentra explorando sus opciones para que se saque muy pronto una edicion en español. Para mas información sobre el libro y una lista de otros materiales pro-derechos de los inmigrantes, vea el sitio web de los autores al
EVENTO: Diálogo Participativo Sobre Inmigracion
FECHA: Jueves, 3 de abril, 2008HORA: A las 8 pm
LUGAR: Librería Calíope, 170 Dyckman St (cerca de Sherman Ave)
Washington Hts, New York, NY
CONTACTO: 212-567-3511

On April 3, 2008, Jane Guskin, co-author of a book on immigration, will be at the Calíope bookstore in Upper Manhattan to facilitate a dialogue in Spanish on this controversial subject. The event will be free and open to the public.

Guskin wrote, with David L. Wilson, The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers (published in July 2007 by Monthly Review Press), a practical guide that responds to common questions about immigration with clear facts and arguments. It serves as a tool both for people who seek a better understanding of the issue and for activists who want to be more effective in their responses to anti-immigrant attitudes.

The authors, based in New York City, have developed a dialogue model based on the format of the book which seeks to encourage participants to put forward their questions and concerns about immigration, share their experiences and ideas, and work together to form responses.

Guskin edits Immigration News Briefs, a weekly bulletin covering immigration-related news. In 1997 Guskin and Wilson helped found the Coalition for the Human Rights of Immigrants, which mobilized against workplace raids. From April 2002 to April 2004, the authors worked to free their colleague and friend, Farouk Abdel-Muhti, from immigration detention.

At the moment the book is only available in English, but the publisher is currently exploring options toward release of a Spanish edition soon. For more information about the book and a list of other immigrant rights materials, see the authors' website at

EVENT: Participatory Dialogue on Immigration
DATE: Thursday, April 3, 2008TIME: 8 pm
PLACE: Calíope Bookstore, 170 Dyckman St (near Sherman Ave) Washington Hts, New York, NY
CALL: 212-567-3511


2. Apr. 6: Book Signing at Reverend Billy Revival

The authors of The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers will be signing copies of their book at Reverend Billy's homecoming revival in the East Village.

The Village That Fights Together STAYS Together!

Join Reverend Billy and the Stop Eviction Gospel Choir, April 6 Sunday at 6:00 PM, St. Mark's Church in New York City. Tickets $10, no one turned away.

Join our gathering of indy shopkeepers and friends from the East Village -- our faith establishes an impenetrable force field down the center of 2nd Ave against hordes of chain stores. Keep 'em on the NYU side! Resist DEMON MONOCULTURE!

Our special sainted guest will be Angelo Fontana, the cobbler on the intersection of 10th Street and 2nd Avenue for 45 years, now evicted from his shoe repair shop. We will dedicate a new 100% Fair Trade cafe.
Urban design adventurists, allies of the East Village Community Coalition, will explain anti-chain store legislation in the works. Amen!

The Stop Eviction Gospel Choir, the Not Buying It Band and the Reverend have recently taken their message to Seattle and Oregon and Belgium and upstate country...time to come back to the neighborhood.

Reverend Billy, the Stop Eviction Gospel Choir and the Not Buying It Band
Sunday, April 6th, 6:00pm at St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery. All Ages!
131 E 10th St, New York NY 10003
At 2nd Ave and 10th Street
Take the 6 to Astor Place or the L Train to 1st Ave.
Tickets $10, no-one turned away More info at

NAFTA, Immigrants and the Discussion That Is Not Happening

By Bill Fletcher, Jr. Executive Editor
March 6, 2008 - BlackCommentator, Issue 267

[Bill Fletcher, Jr. wishes to thank David Bacon for the recent discussion that inspired this commentary.]

[...] This side of the NAFTA equation is critical to discuss because it helps us understand why hundreds of thousands of Mexicans chose to leave their homes and head north. Contrary to the xenophobic, anti-immigrant rhetoric many of us have heard, it was not because "everyone wants to be in America" but rather as a direct result of policies initiated by the USA and their allies in Ottawa and Mexico City.

I thought a great deal about this recently when I was moderating a debate on immigration within a labor union. [...]

Read the full article:

INB 3/29/08: H-2 Workers Sue, March; Detainee Deaths Protested

Immigration News Briefs
Vol. 11, No. 5 - March 29, 2008

1. H-2 Workers File Suit, March to DC
2. Construction Workers Arrested in Virginia, Tennessee
3. Restaurant Raided in Charlotte, NC
4. PA: 64 Arrested in Warehouse Raid
5. NJ Detainees Protest Medical Neglect
6. Judge Blasts ICE over Detainee Death
7. Sister Files Suit Over Detainee Death
8. Al-Arian Still Jailed, on Hunger Strike

Immigration News Briefs is a weekly supplement to Weekly News Update on the Americas, published by Nicaragua Solidarity Network, 339 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012; tel 212-674-9499; INB is also distributed free via email; contact to subscribe or unsubscribe. You may reprint or distribute items from INB, but please credit us and tell people how to subscribe. Immigration News Briefs is posted at

On Mar. 7, a group of Indian welders, pipefitters, and marine fabrication workers employed under the federal H-2B visa program filed a federal lawsuit against Signal International, alleging that they were lured to work at the company's shipyards in Pascagoula, Mississippi and Orange, Texas, with false promises of permanent US residency. Once in the US, the workers say they were forced into involuntary servitude and overcrowded labor camps. The class action lawsuit, David v. Signal Int'l LLC, was filed in US District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, in New Orleans, by several organizations including the Southern Poverty Law Center. [...]

Read the full item:

Monday, March 24, 2008

Two Articles on Crime and Immigration

Immigration Reduces Crime Rates

Yahoo! News
March 18, 2008

Contrary to popular stereotypes, areas undergoing immigration are associated with lower violence, not spiraling crime, according to a new study. Harvard University sociologist Robert Sampson examined crime and immigration in Chicago and around the United States to find the truth behind the popular perception that increasing immigration leads to crime.[...]

Read the full article:

Truth about Illegal Immigration and Crime

by Tom Barry, Americas Policy Program Commentary
January 18, 2008

Anti-immigration forces have been hammering into our heads thedangerous link between illegal immigration and increases in violentcrime. Their only problem: the facts don't support their alarmistcontentions. [...]

Read the full article:

Two Articles at MRZine

Immigration: The Facts Lead Us in a Different Direction

The Center for Immigration Studies gets extensive media coverage as the intellectual, objective arm of the anti-immigrant movement. But how well do its conclusions stand up to scrutiny?

by Jane Guskin, MRZine
March 11, 2008

In November 2007, the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank that favors reducing immigration, released a report entitled "Immigrants in the United States, 2007: A Profile of America's Foreign-Born Population." The report was covered widely in the media, and the author, Center staff researcher Steven Camarota, was given many opportunities to repeat his main theme: that immigration in the United States is now at unprecedented levels, and the new immigrants "create enormous strains on social services" because many of them are uneducated. [...]

Read the full article:

Talking Immigration with Mr. Block

The irony of all this is that the wage issue is just where pro-immigrant forces have the strongest argument, if only they are willing to use it.

By David L. Wilson, MRZine
March 6, 2008

The comic strip adventures of Mr. Block first appeared in 1912 in publications of the Industrial Workers of the World. With his thick, cubic head, Mr. Block, the creation of IWW cartoonist Ernest Riebe, typified a classic type of US worker: scoffing at the idea of working-class solidarity, Mr. Block always sided with his employers against labor organizers, convinced that subservience would make him rich, happy, and possibly president of the United States. Ignoring warnings from Mrs. Block and other workers, in the last frame of each strip he ended up crushed by the bosses he had so loyally supported.

Mr. Block is alive and well a century later in the debate over immigration. [...]

Read the full article:

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Working-Class Struggle

Three housekeepers and a day laborer take action against deadbeat employers who abuse immigrants

By Matt Smith
SF Weekly
Published: March 19, 2008

"The project has invented a new type of legal practice to combat one of the most widespread and overlooked areas of crime in the United States, in which employers violate wage and injury compensation laws in the belief that their workers' illegal-immigrant status will make them afraid to approach authorities.... The Workers' Advocacy Project opened 125 such cases last year."

Saturday, March 15, 2008

TODAY Saturday March 15 at Left Forum

NOTE: The Politics of Immigration authors Jane Guskin and David Wilson will be available to sign copies of their book at the Monthly Review table at the Left Forum today from 1pm-2pm.

NYC, March 15: Panel Analyzes Immigrant Rights Movement

Hundreds of thousands of immigrants took to the streets on May 1, 2006, in one of the largest nationwide protests in US history. This show of force by the immigrant rights movement came as a complete surprise to many political analysts--who seemed no less surprised when the protesters then appeared to go back into the shadows.

The dynamics and future of this important but little-understood movement will be the topic of a panel discussion at the Left Forum 2008 conference in New York City on March 15. The panelists are experienced grassroots organizers active in New York-area groups that work with immigrants and their families in community and labor struggles. One panelist, a longtime local organizer who fled his native Chile to escape the Pinochet regime, is now fighting the US government's efforts to deport him.

The panel is sponsored by the independent radical magazine Monthly Review ( and was organized by Jane Guskin and David Wilson, the authors of The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers, published by Monthly Review Press last year. Guskin and Wilson have facilitated a number of dialogues around the country since the book came out, addressing people's concerns and questions about the current wave of immigration.

"We want to focus on what activists can do to support immigrant community organizing, and what we can all do to start to chip away at anti-immigrant attitudes," says Guskin, who will be on the panel.

Left Forum ( hosts the largest annual conference of the international and US Left in North America, with nearly 2,000 participants in 2007. Speakers at this year's conference, entitled "Cracks in the Edifice," will include Naomi Klein, Grace Lee Boggs, Tariq Ali, Staughton Lynd and many others.

WHAT: Panel Discussion, "The Battle for Immigrant Rights: From Dialogue to Action"
WHEN: Saturday, March 15, 2008, 3-5 pm
WHERE: Cooper Union, 7 East Seventh Street (at Third Avenue, room to be announced)
- Aarti Shahani, co-founder, Families for Freedom (a multiethnic organization of families fighting deportation,
- Ana Maria Archila, co-executive director, Make the Road NY, a grassroots group organizing immigrant communities in Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island (
- Victor Toro, a founder of Chile's MIR, now an activist for the human rights of immigrants who has lived in New York for 25 years; founder of Vamos a la Peña del Bronx (, currently fighting his own deportation order; his case is rescheduled for August 15, 2008.
- Jane Guskin, co-author of The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers (published July 2007 by Monthly Review Press,

Moderator: Adriana Rocha, program officer, New York Foundation (

David Bacon: Black and Brown Together

By David Bacon
The American Prospect, March 2008

In Mississippi, African American leaders are the foremost champions of the state's growing Latino immigrant population. Some day soon, they hope, the new alliance will transform the state's politics.

"Immigrants... are entering an economic system that reproduces discrimination and tiers of inequality originally established to control and profit from black labor. They inherit a second-class status that developed before they arrived."

Monday, March 10, 2008

Community Resistance to Immigrant Scapegoating in Prince William County

by Nancy Lyall

Prince William County, Virginia has become 'ground zero' in the war against immigrants. Prince William has implemented a draconian policy targeting the immigrant community. Mexicanos Sin Fronteras, a community-based, all volunteer organization, has been working tirelessly since last July to organize mass resistance. [...]

The community has been fighting back... The community decided unanimously on the following resistance actions: a week-long economic boycott over Labor Day weekend; a massive march and rally on Sunday, September 2; and a one-day work stoppage on October 9. All three actions were successful and attracted local, national and international attention. The mass rally attracted approximately 7,000 participants, the largest protest rally held in Virginia in over 100 years. [...]

Read the full article:

See also:
Fear, Hate and Hand Grenades: Extremists' Unrelenting Assault on Immigrants
By Tara McKelvey, The American Prospect
November 01, 2007

Northern Virginia residents are hell-bent on driving undocumented immigrants away. Withdemonstrations and lawsuits, the immigrants are fighting back.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Three Reports on Immigration Dialogues

The co-authors of The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers have been facilitating dialogues on immigration at various places around the country since the book's publication by Monthly Review Press in July 2007. Below are links to reports on some of these dialogues. For information on setting up a dialogue, write to:

North San Diego County Ready for Dialogue on Immigration
by Jane Guskin, MRZine
March 3, 2008

"While I didn't meet any Minutemen, I did meet many local residents who are eager to question the status quo."

Immigration Forum at Pace Law School Addresses How to Respond to Nationwide Anti-Immigrant Sentiment
By Leah Rae, The Journal News (Lower Hudson Valley)
November 29, 2007

Authors Mediate Immigration Q & A Forum
By Melissa Traynor, The Recorder (Central Connecticut State University)
February 20, 2008