This week marks the anniversary of one of the greatest tragedies in American history. When the forces of hate took human form, turned planes into weapons and destroyed over 3000 lives.
Hate has again taken human form, in the malignant leaders of our own government. Every day, we see crimes against humanity being sponsored with our own tax dollars. That we are seriously arguing as whether or not a facility is a concentration camp, shows how far we’ve fallen. That we sit quietly, while young children are dying or being terrorized in our custody, shows that we are not who we think we are.
Someday, the authors of this racist madness should stand in front of an international tribunal to answer for their actions. And each of us will wonder if we did enough to stop this horror. But, in the meantime, tell your legislators that you refuse to fund these atrocities. Congress has the power to stop what Trump and his administration is doing to those seeking refuge at our border and across the country. Demand that Congress take the necessary steps to #DefundHate.
Minimal call script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Rep./Sen. [___] to cut funding for ICE and CBP, get rid of the slush fund that allows ICE to continue terrorizing immigrant communities, separating families, deporting law-abiding immigrants and expand their network of inhumane detention facilities and stop any funding for our president’s destructive border wall.
Additional script if you want it: We urge you to increase funding for humane and just treatment of immigrants.
More specific issues – add on as you wish, or create an ADDITIONAL email:
- DEFENSE (DoD). Deny funds that would be used to build Trump’s racist border wall. DON’T “backfill” those projects he took funds from.
- DEPARTMENT of HOMELAND SECURITY (DHS). Refuse to increase enforcement and detention funding for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
- DHS – Deny funds that will be used to separate immigrant children from their parents. Support the #DefundHate campaign.
- DHS – Support the current House language preventing unilateral transfer of funds from other parts of DHS to ICE, particularly diversion of funds for border walls or mass roundups. Oppose any funding bill that does not include that language.
- DHS – Support a $600 million reduction in DHS funding corresponding to the funds the administration transferred for the border wall, and oppose all border wall funding of any sort.
- DHS – Since private prisons are less safe, less humane, and charge 50% more to house convicts andimmigrants than comparable federally-operated facilities, insist that the DHS appropriations bill require that funding for private prisons and detention camps be phased out.
- DHS – Bar the use of federal funds for implementing the proposed revision of the “Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds” rule (similar to HR.3222).
- DHS – Support a clear and explicit prohibition against expending any funds to transfer or house immigrants at the Guantanamo prison.
- DHS – Support unlimited, unannounced oversight inspections of immigrant detention facilities by members of Congress.
- DHS – Place strong guardrails on the treatment of people in ICE and CBP custody, particularly ensuring that no person is held in CBP custody for longer than 72 hours. As many Members of Congress have observed first hand, no amount of funding will ensure that ICE and CBP treat those in its custody humanely unless the law instructs them to do so.
- DHS – Support the proposed increase in civil rights/liberties funding and creation of an immigration detention ombudsman.
- DHS – Support the phase-out of family detention by the end of this year and increased expenditures for detention-alternative programs.
- DHS – Terminate the “Migrant Protection Protocol,” or MPP program, an unlawful and shameful program that returns asylum seekers to Mexico to await their court date; there are more than 140 publicly reported cases of rape, kidnapping, and assault against asylum seekers forced to return to harm through this program.
Rep. Julia Brownley (CA-26): email,DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779
or Rep. Salud Carbajal (CA-24): email. DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348
Senator Feinstein: email, DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430
and Senator Harris: email, DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884
Who is my representative/senator?: hq-salsa.wiredforchange.com
DHS has seen massive budget increases under the Trump Administration, with Customs and Border Protection (CBP)’s budget growing from $13.3 billion in 2016 to $18.4 billion in 2019, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) from $6.2 billion in 2016 to $8.1 billion in 2019. DHS has achieved much of this growth in violation of the expressed intent of congressional appropriators by moving money around within the agency and obtaining specially apportioned payments outside of the usual budget process. Just last month, DHS stated its intentions to move $271 million from FEMA, the Coast Guard, and other accounts in order to further expand the immigration detention system and pursue the abhorrent “Migrant Protection Protocol,” a program that returns asylum seekers to Mexico where many face extreme violence. This is in fact the fourth consecutive year that DHS has transferred or reprogrammed funds to pay for its expansion of the detention system by 60% in just over 3 years, all contrary to expressed congressional intent.
This Administration has also gone to extreme lengths to divert resources Congress has appropriated for other agencies to DHS to further surveil and militarize the border. This year alone, the White House has engaged in a targeted scheme to divert upwards of $7 billion to build more border wall, even after Congress had rejected this funding request. This past Spring, the Administration transferred roughly $2.5 billion from Pentagon military pay and pension and surveillance program funds to a Department of Defense drug-interdiction account to pay for additional border wall construction. It was recently announced that the Administration would grab a further $3.6 billion that Congress had appropriated for military construction projects to build more of the President’s border wall.
The rest of that poem.
To sin by silence, when we should protest,
Makes cowards out of men. The human race
Has climbed on protest. Had no voice been raised
Against injustice, ignorance, and lust,
The inquisition yet would serve the law,
And guillotines decide our least disputes.
The few who dare, must speak and speak again
To right the wrongs of many. Speech, thank God,
No vested power in this great day and land
Can gag or throttle. Press and voice may cry
Loud disapproval of existing ills;
May criticise oppression and condemn
The lawlessness of wealth-protecting laws
That let the children and childbearers toil
To purchase ease for idle millionaires.
Therefore I do protest against the boast
Of independence in this mighty land.
Call no chain strong, which holds one rusted link.
Call no land free, that holds one fettered slave.
Until the manacled slim wrists of babes
Are loosed to toss in childish sport and glee,
Until the mother bears no burden, save
The precious one beneath her heart, until
God’s soil is rescued from the clutch of greed
And given back to labor, let no man
Call this the land of freedom.