Faith leaders and young Dreamers are joining this historic fast on behalf of immigrant families who suffer because our leaders refuse to address a glaring problem with obvious, common sense solutions. It is politics, and politics only, that stands in the way of progress.
From this point forth, everyone who remains quiet at a public event where immigration reform is being discussed by members of Congress is just as guilty as those who are delaying the vote on issue.
We harm ourselves every day when we deport 1,100 people. We put U.S. citizen children in foster care or the care of others or we send them out of the country. A generation of kids has grown up with the threat of deportation of mom or dad.
Last week, as I stood only a few feet away from President Obama and watched him speak on the need for comprehensive immigration reform, I was reminded of the reasons that I'd filed my naturalization papers so that I could vote for him in the November 2008 election.
We need jobs, growth and the American safety net now more than ever. Why should President Obama give up his pledge to tackle the elephant in the room known as corporate welfare?
As frustrating as it is, the ongoing Washington stalemate on health care, immigration and almost any other essential issue should not be surprising. It is not politics as some claim. It is a deep ideological rift among Americans.
Eddy Arias didn't know he was undocumented when he came to the United States at the age of 14. That didn't stop immigration authorities from detaining Arias two years ago, during a routine traffic stop.
By day five I began to have a few more symptoms from lack of food. Eyes began to twitch and my legs began to cramp. I found my heart would race if I went upstairs. And then my heart would race at various moments. But I knew even more deeply in my heart that this was such an important struggle.
I am Ju Hong, the "heckler" that interrupted your speech last week. I spoke up not out of disrespect, however, either for you or our country. No, I spoke up -- and am writing to you now -- to ask that you use your executive order to halt deportations for 11.5 million undocumented immigrant families.
The debate about immigration reform has been very productive in America over these past several years. And that debate has been won -- by those who favor a common sense agenda for reform. There are really few policy debates left on this issue, except about details. There is no real substance behind the opposition to reforming what mostly everyone agrees is a broken and brutal system. Rather it is politics: angry politics, fearful politics, and, sadly, racially-based politics, with institutional political practices and rules that can avoid democratic accountability. That is just wrong. Democracy is being vetoed by corrupt and racial politics. It's not just our immigration system that is broken -- our politics are too.
Detained immigrants include victims of human trafficking, asylum seekers, and legal permanent residents with longstanding community ties; their voices and perspectives remain unheard.
"My mother and older sister could still be deported," he said, and shared how they were unable to visit their ailing grandfather because of immigration status, and then unable to attend his funeral when he died.
It's Republicans who should be gloomy about their failure to rebrand the GOP after its 2012 failure. Progressives should be angry and outraged, but also convinced that the public is behind them.
Is it immigration reform or political reform that is needed? Well, it may seem idealistic or nationalistic to say that the nation's economy and our future well-being should come before partisan politics. In this era, such simplicity and common sense seems increasingly elusive.
It struck us, given the focus on immigration throughout most of this year, that our final reason for being thankful in 2012 should be our primary one in 2013.
In celebration of #GivingTuesday, we've been sharing a look at just some of what the League has done to increase political participation and strengthen our democracy -- and our country -- in 2013.