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Vote 4 immigration reform! Call your senator!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

We escalate for peace, for freedom, with wisdom, immigration reform (RIFA) moves forward

“Civil disobedience is the active refusal to obey certain laws, demands and commands of a government using no form of violence.”  says Wikipedia

It is a form of speech.  It is saying, “We respectfully disagree with the

chained to the doors

Arizona protesters chained to capital door
photo from channel 12 news

current direction our government is taking”.  It is an effective means of changing unjust public policy.  It was used in the civil rights movement of the 1960's.  

Our actions are designed to draw attention to a cause the main-stream press has forgotten.

Maybe the press won’t forget about us now.  Not if Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signs HB 1070 turning every police department into a mini immigration enforcement squad.  Maybe it is time to “escalate” and bring more attention to the cause.

How do we civilly disobey? 

The answer is a deeply personal one.  There are consequences to civil disobedience.  It all sounds romantic, but refusal to obey commands by a just or unjust police authority may mean serious jail time.  You can’t do much for civil rights sitting behind bars in an orange jump suit!

Or can you?  If there were thousands of us?

Maybe if we band together, all races, all cultures and from every national origin and we say:

“We are not working this week” – no jail time, or “We are not leaving the capital steps or governor’s office until the law changes or you remove us.” - probably jail time.

Then we sacrifice for others.  Jails are not nice places to be.  But then, it is ugly to sit in an immigration “detention” facility with your daughter crying because daddy is not coming home and your wife wondering how she is going to pay the bills!

One thing for sure.  However we choose to engage in civil disobedience, it must be done with peace.  We could lose the immigration battle if things turn ugly. 

A nation watching people demonstrate for a just cause is one thing.  A nation watching a frightened people fight with violence when they hear bad news from an ugly legislature in Arizona, is quite another.  Right now, the Arizona legislature is a rotten apple.  Violence turns us into a barrel of rotten apples.  There is no wisdom in that!

The whole point of civil disobedience is to draw attention to our cause, to garner public support and if we cannot have public support, at the least to show a reticent people what things will look like without immigrant labor. 

Before we resort to civil disobedience, Senator Gutierrez has a suggestion:

Call Arizona Governor Jan Brewer’s office!

Swamp their switchboard! It is easy compared to spending 30 days in the pokey, and a lot less expensive than losing a week’s worth of wages in a work stoppage. 

Let’s use wisdom in our civil disobedience!

Governor Brewer’s Telephone: (602) 542-4331

Governor Brewer’s e-mail message board:

If Governor Jan Brewer passes her hate law then let’s give Governor Jan fair warning.  We are going to civilly disobey. 

I am ready.  Are U? ~

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