Friday, March 11, 2016

Black and Brown Power Unite to Stop Deportation Raids

By Kelly Hayes, Truthout
March 4, 2016

With issues of mass incarceration and deportation hanging heavy over the current presidential race, both Black Lives Matter activists and immigration rights activists have had a great deal to say about the policies and commentaries of each potential commander in chief. But while hashtags like #SuperTuesday go viral and problematic award shows drag up questions about Black and Brown solidarity, some young people are forging ahead on the front lines, arm-in-arm with those whose issues many would divide from their own.


On February 15, a bold act of protest brought traffic to a standstill outside the Regional Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Field Office in downtown Chicago. During rush-hour morning traffic, protesters raised a pair of ladders in the crosswalk of Congress Avenue, blocking inbound traffic to a major expressway, as a row of participants locked themselves together in the streets. Within moments, a local activist was secured to the top of each ladder, creating a spectacle of rage and resistance to the deportation raids that have terrorized immigrant communities.

While opposition to recent raids targeting Central American families in the United States have been widely discussed, they have not always been linked with the broader spectrum of structural violence that threatens Brown and Black people in the United States. The recent Chicago protest represented a convergence of radical perspectives on issues of policing and deportation - intersections that are frequently erased in national policy discussions.[...]

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