The Common Good

Your View: United Interfaith Action campaigns for citizenship

This Saturday, United Interfaith Action will join with 20 labor union, church, and community group co-sponsors of the "Let My People Go!" commemoration of the 100 New Bedford residents — and by extension their families — who remain oppressed and dehumanized six years after the draconian militarized ICE intervention at the Michael Bianco sweatshop.

As members of the Massachusetts Community Action Network and the PICO National Network, we call for the United States to relate its immigration legislation to our contemporary world and extend citizenship to those without status.

Six years ago, the federal government chose to terrorize and systematically dehumanize 361 of our parishioners, neighbors and colleagues. The government has never accepted responsibility for the economic disruptions it has caused in Latin America.

Our theological reflections and misgivings recall Evangelical Pastor Jim Wallis' description of racism as our national Original Sin, while many writers remind us that most indigenous communities here died out in the genocide of the federal government. We must put an end to the criminalizing and dehumanizing of working families who have responded to global economic conditions by working to survive.