A ‘Day Without Immigrants’ Rallies Show Just How Important They Are to America
uncategorized| | By Steven Lerner
Life for immigrants in the U.S. has never been easy, especially after the election of Donald Trump. Facing fierce opposition, many immigrants are taking a stand to demonstrate their contributions to the U.S. economy and our culture.
Called a ‘A Day Without Immigrants,’ millions of immigrants are expected to protest in Washington D.C. and other major U.S. cities on February 16. The protests, which are expected to culminate at the White House, include social media protests as well.
Immigrants used the hashtags #DayWithoutImmigrants to tell their personal stories about the struggles their family members endured.
— د (@rza_xo) February 16, 2017
my parents busted their ass and ate shit in order to be here in this country for me and them to have a better life #DayWithoutImmigrants ??
— valerie✨ (@Valeriee_Angel) February 16, 2017
My immigrant parents cleaned, babysat, builed houses, build schools&hospitals, cooked, served you & never broke a law #DayWithoutImmigrants
— sugar baby (@marisustwt) February 16, 2017
As a result of the protests, many businesses closed their doors to show their solidarity with their immigrant workers on a Day Without Immigrants on Thursday.
A post shared by Jim Radosevic (@jimradosevic) on
In addition to the closed restaurants and shops, many immigrants are staying home from work and school.
Kim Dean, who teaches 3rd grade English in Nashville, said that only six students showed up to her class on Thursday.
“We heard rumblings of it yesterday,” Dean told USA Today. “There has been a persistent fear about what if their parents disappear (due to Immigration and Customs Enforcement sweeps). Several have been talking about running away if they are placed in foster homes. They shouldn’t have to worry about that, they are only 8 and 9. They are babies.”
One of the goals of the Day Without Immigrants protests is to change the perception that some Americans have about undocumented immigrants so that there could be an easier pathway for citizenship.
Immigrants aren't illegal because they want to be. Not enough spots. No reasonable path to citizenship. $7,000 process #DayWithoutImmigrants
— ♻️ Christopher Zullo (@ChrisJZullo) February 16, 2017
It also seems that the Trump administration opposes all types of immigration — legal or not. Trump’s immigration ban executive order prohibited green card holders from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States. And Steve Bannon, Trump’s Chief Strategist, has publicly spoken out against all forms of immigration.