Living for Change News
February 20th, 2017
With the release of our first issue on February 7, 2017, RIVERWISE magazine is officially part of the local media landscape. Part of our stated mission is to be inclusive in ways not normally associated with print media.
We have begun accepting submissions for the Riverwise Spring issue. But we’re exploring other ways to engage and broaden the network of movement activity for the benefit of Detroit’s traditionally underserved population.
In keeping with that spirit, we are starting a series of public dialogues. Join us for our first official ‘community conversation’ February 25 at Source Booksellers at 5 pm and share stories of public displays of activism in your neighborhood.
Who is organizing who, to solve what prevailing issues? What existing community spaces serve as liberation zones or places to create and implement new visions? And how we can better cover these stories?
With our first issue as a backdrop, we’ll be talking about these issues and more throughout 2017 and beyond. – The Riverwise Collective
Thinking for Ourselves
Shea HowellAcross the country people are deciding it is more important to do the right thing than to follow a bad law. Days into the Trump administration the Attorney General refused to defend Trump’s executive order closing borders to people from predominately Muslim countries. Sally Yates made it clear, none of us can say “we are just following orders.”Since that moment, thousands of others have confronted this choice. As TSA and Immigration officials followed Trumps orders, people staged nationwide protests, swarming airports and packing the streets. Now, after galvanizing the attention of the country through a day without immigrants, people are organizing resistance. Some of this resistance is providing workshops on understanding your rights, some is establishing networks for emotional and financial support, and some is preparing for direct actions to stop ICE from deporting people.People of faith are asking how to remain truthful to higher laws while working to transform the unjust ones dictated by Trump. Declaring sanctuary churches is one response. Nationally, there are more than 800 congregations that have become sanctuaries since November 8.Mayors are reaffirming their cities as Sanctuaries. These declarations of non-cooperation with federal officials shows widespread defiance to Trump’s effort to bully cities. New York, Boston, Seattle, Chicago and San Francisco all publicly defied Trump. San Francisco, Mayor Ed Lee said, “I am here today to say we are still a sanctuary city. We stand by our sanctuary city because we want everybody to feel safe and utilize the services they deserve, including education and health care.”Detroit’s Mayor Duggan has failed this moral test. Worse, his Chief of Police is telling us how much he loves Trump. It took one little invitation up to the big White House, and Chief Craig has come back “emboldened.”“Very positive, very supportive,” Craig said. In logic that was obviously twisted by Trump, Craig claimed he would not be “doing illegal immigration work for the president, but if a violent offender is caught and is not a citizen, the feds will be called.”
Such a distinction is likely to become increasingly blurry. During the recent round of arrests across the country, many were “collateral arrests” meaning those detained weren’t the original targets but people who got caught up in workplaces and homes.
The reality is that Trump is depending on local law enforcement to support mass deportation. That is why part of the meeting with Craig and other police officers was to highlight a little discussed executive order on immigration enforcement that included measures to ramp up a program known as 287(g), which deputizes local law enforcement officers to double as federal immigration agents. In addition to establishing broad and vague authority for arrests, this order provides a framework for local governments and private prisons to benefit from establishing detention centers. Detaining immigrants is about to become an even bigger profit center.
Chief Craig would do well to rethink his thoughtless response. The Mayor and the City Council need to reaffirm Detroit as a Sanctuary City. They also need to reassert local control over local police.
Today, across the city, school principals and teachers are providing far more leadership on what it means to live in a city that cares for its people. In calling for Sanctuary Schools, they are making it clear that “following orders” will not lead to a just society.
6 Things to do to support immigrant Neighbors
1. Put up a sign stating that everyone is welcome (attached). Download and print the signs from this website : https://www.welcomeyourneigh bors.org/download-pdf
2. Join the Michigan Immigrants Rights Center newsletter. Stay up to date and be an ally when anti-immigrant legislation comes up: http://michiganimmigrant.o rg/about-us/subscribe-newslett er
3. Sign-up for a KNOW YOUR RIGHTS training! – https://docs.google.com/form s/d/e/1FAIpQLScBR_o0LweYzITIFN Oirrh50g0Snoafsx1gzsT41NGjC7c0 qg/viewform?c=0&w=1 (More dates to follow!)
4. HOST a Know Your Rights (KYR) session at your school, church, or neighborhood and invite as many as you can!
5. Share these videos from MIRC:
MIRC made a 20 minute English “train the trainers” video as a companion to our popular “Preparing Your Family for Immigration Enforcement” guide. Here it is:
6. JOIN THE ACLU!! They need support and volunteers! https://action.acl u.org/secure/support-aclu-mich igan
(AHEM! 7. Others are wondering what they can do, so post what you are doing on FB and share this email every couple of weeks with others!)
Come see YES! magazine editor Sarah Van Gelder discuss her new book in Detroit
What We’re Reading
Giving Up Toxic Masculinity To Build Real Resistance
There is a love that should be more prevalent. In our communities overrun with toxic masculinity, a deep, radical love for women and all gender non-conforming people is especially important right now. The horror of white malevolence has personified itself in the realization of a Trump presidency. This is intricately linked to dangerous definitions of manhood that will only make these times worse. It’s imperative that the men who create this constant disarray realize that they’re going to be making life that much harder during these difficult times ahead.
While many are contemplating what resistance will look like over the years ahead, there’s one major effort that shouldn’t be overlooked: men need to stop beating, raping, and killing women. Any resistance to fascism will be undermined by the terror that men wreak against women in our respective communities. The overwhelming violence of toxic masculinity defines itself at the expense of women daily. It’s street harassment; it’s domestic violence; it’s everywhere. Though often overlooked, women have been the formative leaders of so much of the work that’s gotten our movements to where they are today. Without women, our movements are absolutely nothing, and we must travail to overcome the trite manhoods that destroy women. KEEP READING