We are calling on all people of conscience to shut down the concentration camps on the U.S.-Mexico border through any nonviolent means necessary.
From Abolitionism to Standing Rock, Americans have come together time and again to defy horrific injustice. Now, as the government tries to normalize concentration camps, it is time like never before to target those responsible.
Inspired by the civil rights movement, ACT-UP, and early labor struggles, we must employ every nonviolent tactic at our disposal to oppose this institutionalized criminality. We are calling on everyone to organize: your community, your school, your house of worship, your workplace, your friends and family.
We can blockade the concentration camps with occupations and die-ins. We can set up our own “freedom camps” on their doorstep. We can support workers who walk out and strike. We can make life impossible for the tech companies profiting from this misery, for the big banks that fund it, and for the politicians that make it possible. And we can directly aid the immigrants-rights groups who are already working to end the illegal mass detention of our brothers and sisters. We ask everyone to recognize and respect the front-line immigrant communities and organizers who have been fighting for many years, and to take leadership from those most impacted by this brutal system.
*Close all of Trump’s concentration camps now
Historians call the “border detention centers” concentration camps. Rabbis call them concentration camps. Actor George Takei says, “I know what concentration camps are. I was inside two of them, in America. And yes, we are operating such camps again.”
Doctors say children are being detained in “torture facilities.” The camps are rife with disease, filth, and lack of proper food. Seven children have died in detention in recent months. Meanwhile, the Trump administration is telling judges that the safe and sanitary conditions that it is required by law to provide are possible without soap, toothbrushes, or even sleep.
When even the New York Times calls the camps “a mass atrocity,” and says people should target the “mid-level functionaries who make the system run,” you know it’s time to act.
What would you do if it were your daughter, grandson, niece or nephew who was sick, denied medicine, deprived of sleep, and so traumatized that they’ve become suicidal? You’d move heaven and earth to free them. These are all our children; their lives are sacred. We must shut down these camps today and forever.
America must be better than this. Lady Liberty does not lift her torch so that we can herd innocent women and children into concentration camps. The right to seek asylum is completely legal under U.S. and international law. The criminals here are in the Trump Administration—and when the government engages in such breathtaking criminality, people must take action, fast.
Unless people step up to stop them, concentration camps always get worse. Today it’s refugees; tomorrow it could be Muslims, journalists, political opponents, and anyone who doesn’t think or look quite right.
We must emphatically reject a future built on walls and drones and surveillance and worse. Instead, we must embody the best of our values and fight for a society in which everyone is treated with dignity and respect, and given a fighting chance.
For a first step, join in the July 12 protests organized by Lights for Liberty. Then check out closethecamps.us and nomorecamps.org to find out about all the upcoming events, the latest actions, how you can organize your own protest, and frontline groups you can support.
Let’s raise the floodwaters of resistance and rebellion until we wash away all the hate. Together, we can do this.
Naomi Klein, Author
Barbara Ehrenreich, Author
Noam and Valeria Chomsky
Jeremy Scahill, co-founder, The Intercept, author of Blackwater and Dirty Wars
Bill Fletcher, Jr., former president of TransAfrica Forum
Rae Abileah, Kohenet, Beautiful Trouble
Andy Bichlbaum, The Yes Men
Arun Gupta, Journalist
Juan Carlos Ruiz, Co-founder, New Sanctuary Coalition
Jeanette Vizguerra, Sanctuary movement, Colorado
Rabbi Alissa Wise, Deputy Director, Jewish Voice for Peace
Rabbi Brant Rosen, Tzedek Chicago
Tania Mattos Co-founder, Queens Neighborhoods United
Sonali Kolhatkar, Host of Rising Up with Sonali