On May Day Stand With The Immigrants
ON MAY DAY, LET'S march with the immigrants. Standing together brings
hope and works to overcome the very real distrust and fears that
exist. To stand aside means helping our common enemy deepen our
divisions, weakening us all- immigrant and native born alike. Let's
bring union solidarity banners and signs from our many organizations.
Solidarity is not support or sympathy. Solidarity is action based on
having a common enemy and common interests among us. Immigrant workers
are only guilty of wanting the same things most people want everywhere-
a decent life, fair treatment with respect, and a future for our
children. They don't cause low paying jobs here or expensive health care
or endless war; Corporate America does.
Capitalism increasingly makes a decent life for most almost impossible
in many countries, so many come where a better life seems possible, with
or without papers. Did the Pilgrims have papers from the Iroquois
Nation? Did the N. Americans have papers for Texas, Arizona, New Mexico,
Some elements of the corporate ruling class and their opportunist
politicians are seizing the opportunity to play on the very real fears
of millions here who have no decent jobs, pay or benefits themselves.
This anti-immigrant move is to make immigrants without papers seem
like the enemy- the reason people here face low-paying jobs, no
benefits, no health care, no pension, and endless war.
As many such hardships grow here, this move to victimize illegal
immigrants is dangerous. It's just like the German Nazis making the Jews
and communists the scapegoat, the target, hiding the capitalist system
as the real cause of growing hardship and a bleak future. This is deadly
serious for us all.
It's the employers who benefit from immigrants without papers. They make
extra profits from low pay/no benefits and leverage immigrants
being vulnerable and desperate in order to lower pay and benefits for
many born here. In fact, it's their system that creates these problems
in the first place. Let's unite against their system, in solidarity with
our sisters and brothers, and for our common future. Solidarity means
hope for us all.
Let's come with banners and fliers that take this up: Legal rights for
immigrants. Living wages for All- minimum wage of $12/hour! Universal
Health Care- take the profits out of our health care! Get out of Iraq
Now- Not one penny for military bases overseas!
How about planning meetings along these lines? If any are up and
running, please send out notice. If not, suggestions for such meetings,
asap. Others in different locations, working along such lines, please
respond and let's all hook up, share ideas, resources and a common
outlook. If such a center exists, please let me know so I can pass the word.
in solidarity, Earl Silbar
AFSCME 3506, executive board at large, * ID purposes only