By Duane Campbell
Over 1,500 marchers from around California descended on the Capitol on Wednesday March 15, to support the passage of SB 54: The California Values Act, which would significantly prohibit local law enforcement from coordination with federal immigration agents. While many cities, counties, school districts and universities have sanctuary policies, this bill would make such policies state law and shield many immigrants from mass deportation efforts of the federal authorities. The bill is strongly opposed by the Association of County Sheriffs who manage county jails and receive federal funds for their cooperation.
|Immigration Control and Enforcement detention center.|
The mass migration of children from Central America has been at the center of a political firestorm in the United States. Both migration and deportation increased again in late 2015, causing the mainstream media to run even more stories blaming families, especially mothers, for sending or bringing their children north. President Barack Obama himself lectured them, as though they were simply bad parents. “Do not send your children to the borders,” he said recently.
As talk of immigration reform dominated the new Congress, editor Duane Campbell conducted separate interviews with DSA Honorary Chair Eliseo Medina (former secretary treasurer of SEIU and former Executive Board member of the United Farm Workers) and immigrant rights activist Alma Lopez.
The interview with Medina was posted here on Feb.14, 2014. See below. Both interviews will appear in the spring issue of Democratic Left.
Alma Lopez, an activist in Sacramento, was a co-presenter with Campbell at an immigration workshop at the DSA national convention, held in Oakland in October 2013. Here, Campbell talks to her about young people and immigrant activism.
DC: What do you think has been the effect of immigrant rights activism on young people?
AL: Students and young people have been playing a major role, along with immigrant community members. In Sacramento, our group has been working with people in northern and southern California who have been arrested in protests against ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] and deportations