Monday, May 01, 2006

Defend the Rights of Immigrant Workers

Today is International Workers Day. Here in Portland, as in many cities across the country, people are taking to the streets to defend the rights of immigrant workers. Dressed in white and waving American flags, workers, families, supporters and, occasionally, employers swarm the downtown streets to make their statement about the current administration’s efforts to deport or criminalize thousands of people.

Most touching are the young children who are legal citizens pleading for their parents’ and grandparents’ right to remain in this country. This takes me back to the 70s in San Francisco and Central California where we boycotted grapes and marched to support Cesar Chavez and the Farmworkers. Thirty years later, same problems with callous treatment of the underclass that supports our economy with their daily labor in fields, factories, and the homes of the well-off.

If I were still in Osceola, I would dress all in white and stand (probably alone!) on the courthouse lawn as I did to protest the War On Iraq. Here, I am only a tiny dot in a sea of humanity making a statement for freedom. Ironically, it comes at the same time as Amnesty International gathers here for its conference on human rights.


Post a Comment

<< Home