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Related Categories: Peninsula | Immigrant Rights
Stanford Students Support Immigrant Rights!
by Carol Brouillet (cbrouillet [at] igc.org)
Monday Apr 10th, 2006 5:25 PM
Students organized a rally at Stanford in conjunction with the National Day of Action for Immigrant Rights. They blocked off two traffic arteries off White Plaza to draw attention to the problems of "borders."
"We didn't cross the borders!" "The borders crossed us!" was one of many chants that a very lively, vocal group of students, and other immigrants' rights supporters chanted.

Off the "Claw," a fountain before the Stanford Bookstore and White Plaza. The students had erected a couple of barriers, which forced students and others, on their way to class, to make a detour down a couple of steps and around the fountain. They drew lots of attention, slowed people down, and they passed out hundreds of flyers with information about the proposed legislation that they opposed. They also were for legislative reform that would give amnesty and protection to the millions of immigrants who live and work in the United States.

Immigrants have provided "cheap labor" in the most back-breaking industries and are often exploited, underpaid, and forced to live as slaves in some instances. The climate of fear that has prevailed since 9-11, has exasperated the scapegoating of immigrants as a threat to the United States. By pitting workers against workers, those at the top of the pyramid who benefit from low wages, escape the organized wrath that they merit.

Some people were angry, irritated, and physically shoved through the barriers, and students, while others were more polite, respectful, made a detour, sympathetic to the symbolism that the borders represented.

There were dozens and dozens of students and supporters, wearing white, in solidarity with immigrants.

"Who are the immigrants?" chanted one side. "We all are immigrants!" chanted the other side. There were many signs, in Spanish and in English. Including one which said, "Only CRIMINAL GOVERNMENTS would criminalize PEOPLE," and "JAIL the war criminals- FREE the innocent PEOPLE."

At the conclusion of the rally, borders were tossed down and the students jumped upon them in celebration before gathering on the lawn. They planned carpools to join other Immigrants Rights' rallies in San Jose and San Francisco later that day, but were also admonished to "Hurry, Don't cut class!"

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