The New York Times has a great editorial today on the needlessly cruel immigration policies that continue to gain traction in the United States. Much of the community that Esperanza serves are immigrants who face the challenges outlined in the article. The editorial takes a historical view and determines that the current treatment of immigrants will be viewed with shame by future generations of Americans.
The New York Times describes the current situation:
A nation of immigrants is holding another nation of immigrants in bondage, exploiting its labor while ignoring its suffering, condemning its lawlessness while sealing off a path to living lawfully. The evidence is all around that something pragmatic and welcoming at the American core has been eclipsed, or is slipping away.
As an organization that serves immigrants and is staffed by immigrants and children of immigrants, these issues are very close to many of us at Esperanza. Some Esperanza staff members participated in the May Day Protests in Los Angeles to demonstrate our support for immigrant rights and our opposition to unjust immigration policies. Although the issue is personal to me for a lot of reasons — my parents are immigrants, I’m from Iowa (where the largest immigration raid to date recently occurred) and I work at Esperanza — the editorial puts the issue in the proper context that should be relevant to anyone: current immigration policies are violating human rights and corroding the meaning of America.