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[Fwd: NATIONAL DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH MUSLIM, ARAB AND SOUTH ASIAN IMMIGRANTS]

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  • Travis Morales
    Please, endorse and distribute broadly the call below (also attached as a PDF file). * FEBRUARY 20, 2004 NATIONAL DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH MUSLIM, ARAB AND SOUTH
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 30, 2004
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      Please, endorse and distribute broadly the call below (also attached as
      a PDF file).
      *
      FEBRUARY 20, 2004
      NATIONAL DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH MUSLIM,
      ARAB AND SOUTH ASIAN IMMIGRANTS*

      /First they came for the Communists and I didn't speak up because I
      wasn't a Communist.
      Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.
      Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I
      wasn't a trade unionist.
      Then they came for the Catholics and I didn't speak up because I was a
      Protestant.
      Then they came for me, but by that time, no one was left to speak up./
      --Pastor Martin Niemoeller, Nazi Germany

      We call on people everywhere to come together on the 3rd National Day of
      Solidarity to resist the scapegoating and criminalization of Muslim,
      Arab and South Asian immigrants! Take action and speak out on February
      20th, 2004 as part of the National Day of Solidarity with Muslim, Arab,
      and South Asian Immigrants!

      Since September 11, 2001, the U.S. government has launched a wide-scale
      assault on the basic rights of Muslims, Arabs, and South Asians. These
      communities have been the targets of mass roundups, indefinite
      detentions, secret hearings, and more. Thousands have been deported
      through the selective enforcement of immigration laws. Through "Special
      Registration," 82,000 men and boys from 24 Muslim, Arab, and South Asian
      countries came forth to register, and many were subjected to brutality
      and detention. Despite having complied with this law, 13,000 men and
      boys are now in the process of being deported. Families continue to be
      devastated as they are torn apart, jobs and homes lost. Neighborhoods
      continue to be raided by INS officers, thousands are still detained over
      minor visa violations, and tens of thousands of people have fled the
      United States in fear of being persecuted. Not one of these men have
      been charged with any connection to the events of 9/11, but they are
      being arrested, humiliated and deported precisely on that very pretext.

      Repression continues to intensify. This past August, the Department of
      Homeland Security began implementing a system to keep track of foreign
      students. On January 5, 2004, the government launched US-VISIT, which
      will result in the fingerprinting and photographing of millions of
      visitors to the US. Twenty-seven countries are exempt from the invasive
      US-VISIT program. The fact that 25 of the 27 countries profiled are
      European, shows clearly that the U. S. Government's domestic practice
      of racial profiling has extended to the world community. Is this how
      our government intends to make friends, And is this the kind of example
      we want to give for the world?

      The government's merciless onslaught is relentless. All Muslims,
      citizens and non-citizens, are regarded as potential terrorists or
      traitors as we have seen with the arrest of Muslim GI's who served at
      Guantánamo Bay, where hundreds of "enemy combatants" are being held
      without due process. The threat of a life time of indefinite detention
      has been used to force young Muslim men to plead guilty to "conspiracy"
      charges so the government can trumpet that it is breaking up "terrorist
      cells". Several federal court decisions have declared that parts of the
      1996 Anti-terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act are
      unconstitutional, that Jose Padilla cannot be held as an "enemy
      combatant", and that the detainees in Guantánamo cannot be denied access
      to attorneys or the U.S. Courts. These court decisions however do not
      change the overall repressive measures because they do not have the
      force of law. And further, this will be decided by the Supreme Court,
      several of whose members have publicly said that in times of "war" the
      executive should be given a free hand to curtail civil liberties if need be.

      The government also calculates that these adjustments will allow people
      to swallow the application of repressive measures to a broader cross
      section of people in this country. In many ways, political dissent and
      opposition has already been criminalized and demonized across the board
      using the rationale of "national security,"- e.g., FBI spying on
      anti-war protesters, "no-fly lists," and the creation of a culture of
      distrust. Thus, some refinements in the mechanisms of repression are
      acceptable to the government. But they should not be acceptable to the
      people as a carrot to get us to accept the overall premise that
      destruction of civil and human rights is required in order to safeguard
      national security. The government has used fear to stampede us into
      accepting or ignoring the persecution of Muslim Arab and South Asian
      people in our country. If we allow this, who will be next to be
      profiled as an "enemy combatant"?

      *It is up to us to determine the kind of future we want. And it is the
      responsibility of those who have seen through the lies to expose them --
      and fight for the truth.*

      February 20th is an opportunity to open the eyes of many more people to
      the reality of this repression and mobilize many more into this movement
      to stop it. On this day, communities of Muslim, Arab and South Asian
      immigrants can see that there are many others who will stand with them
      and act fearlessly to stop this repression.

      Standing together on the National Day of Solidarity sends an important
      message to the government that they will face a growing multi-national
      and inter-religious movement of citizens and non-citizens who are
      organizing an unstoppable fight to end this kind of repression!

      *We must learn from history.* February 19th is the anniversary of the
      infamous Executive Order 9066, signed by President Roosevelt,
      authorizing the roundup and imprisonment of Japanese Americans living in
      the western coastal states. The specter of this moment in history lives
      in the Special Registrations, the fingerprinting at airports, and
      selective detentions of today.

      *On February 20th wear a blue triangle with the name of one of the newly
      "disappeared!"*

      In the early 1940's, German Nazis used different colored triangles to
      categorize and divide the people held in concentration camps. We will
      not allow the same kind of profiling to happen here. *We wear a blue
      triangle affirmatively to demonstrate our solidarity with those being
      targeted today.

      Be creative on February 20th. Find a way to bring people together to
      express our resistance to these attacks on our colleagues, friends,
      neighbors and each other!*

      . Sponsor a speak-out for the families of the disappeared so they can
      tell their stories
      . Think of what it would mean if on that day churches, synagogues,
      mosques, unions and schools declared that they would provide sanctuary
      for the persecuted
      . Organize a vigil or demonstration at a local INS detention center
      . Hold a teach in at your local school, college, or university
      . Call your political representatives and demand that these outrages cease
      . Organize a poetry SLAM or a music show
      . Write a letter to your local newspaper calling for justice for all
      . Demand that our colleges and universities not turn over the files of
      immigrant students to the government
      . Contact local TV and radio talk shows asking to be part of the program
      . Create and Display new and creative art expressing our desire for
      justice and respect for human rights
      . Give voice to those who have been affected through radio shows and
      speak-outs

      *Remember the roundup of the Jews in Nazi Germany.
      Remember the roundup of the Japanese Americans in the U.S.
      Think of the roundup of Muslims, Arabs, and South Asians in the U.S.*

      Initial Endorsers:
      American Muslim Voice . California Interfaith Alliance for Prison Reform
      . Valerie Camacho, San Diego . Compañeros del Barrio, San Francisco .
      Riva Enteen, San Francisco . Food Not Bombs, Akron, Ohio . Fuerza Unida,
      San Antonio, TX . Prof. Gloria House, Detroit . Justice for New
      Americans . La Raza Centro Legal, San Francisco . La Resistencia .
      Donald R. Lake, Founder, Citizens for a Better Veterans' Home, San Diego
      . Travis Morales, supporter of the Revolutionary Communist Party,
      Houston . Mira Nair, Filmmaker, Mirabai Films . Reverend John Oda, Pine
      United Methodist Church . Reverend Jim Oines, Lutheran Pastor and Worker
      in the Sanctuary Movement for Central American Refugees . NYU Students
      for Justice in Palestine, New York, NY . Not In Our Name . Pakistan
      American Alliance . Queers For Racial And Economic Justice . Refuse and
      Resist . Sikh Media Watch . South Alameda Peace and Justice Coalition .
      South Asians Against Police Brutality and Racism, New York, NY . Mazen
      M. Sukkar, Esq, Hollywood, FL

      *For more information and to get involved, contact the Blue Triangle
      Network. Please e-mail or mail your endorsement of this call.
      Distribute, post & publish everywhere! Funds are needed to organize for
      February 20. Please, immediately send donations. All actions on
      February 20 should be publicized and popularized. Write, e-mail or call
      the Blue Triangle Network with news of activities in your area: P.O. Box
      7451, Dearborn, MI 48121-7451; (313) 942-7187; E-mail:
      NationalOffice@... http://www.BlueTriangle.org/*

      ___Our organization endorses or ___I personally endorse (check one) the
      above "call" for a NATIONAL DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH MUSLIM, ARAB AND
      SOUTH ASIAN IMMIGRANTS (signing this "call" gives permission to publish
      or otherwise make public this endorsement. If organizational or
      institutional affiliation of a personal endorsement is to be listed for
      identification purposes only check here.___ )

      Signature______________________________________________Name
      Printed_______________________________


      Organization or
      Institution___________________________________________Title____________________________

      Address______________________________________________________________Phone______________________


      Enclosed is my donation of $____ to distribute, print, publish, fax, and
      mail this call nation wide.



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