Sunday, July 04, 2004

Independence Day on The Border

In Bisbee, AZ there was a large gathering for the Julym 4th celebration. In old Brewery Gultch, here in Bisbee, there was a diverse group celebrating Independence Day. I took this opportunity of a large gathering of people to advocate for immigration reform. The Border Action Networks immigration legalization campaign involves the signing and sending of postcards to Senator McCain letting him know that Southern Arizona is united in their demand for immigration reform that establishes a broad-based legalization program, essentially asking him to support the Safe Orderly Legal Visas and Enforcement Act of 2004. The first comprehensive immigration reform bill to pass through Congress in 30 years. Its about time.
Supporting immigration reform such as this on Independence Day felt very appropriate. What is more in line with this countries history than immigration. With the exception of the Native Americans of this continent, this nation was founded on immigration. I received some interesting responses when asking people to support immigration reform by signing a postcard to send to Senator McCain asking him to take action on immigration reform. Many of the responses from people revolved around their emotional connections to the agency that enforces immigration policy, the Border Patrol. Many felt anger, frustration, fear; yet others expressed a sense of pride, confidence in their mission and an extreme dislike for undocumented crossers. Some folks told me that they felt it was their patriotic duty not to advocate for immgiration reform such as mentioned. Others thought immigration reform was an appropriate issue on July 4th in Bisbee. Regardless of who agreed or not, I was able to secure 75 signatures. This was the best Independence Day I've ever had.


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