Wednesday, May 07, 2008

NYC May Day Pro-Migrant Rally Recap - We are shaken, but not defeated

Here are my belated scattered observations from the May Day rally at Union Square in New York City last week.


This was the first May Day march I had participated in. It was a lot of fun, and emotionally and (in a strictly secular way :-) ) spiritually uplifting, but I kind of felt like I had missed the party. I heard about crowds exponentially larger in 2006 and substantially larger last year. But apparently, frustration in the pro-migrant community with the lack of progress toward comprehensive reform and fear instilled by widescale raids over the past year-and-a-half had combined to ratchet down participation in this year’s march. (With my own eyeballs, I estimated between 2,000 and 3,000 marchers—not something you see every day parading down Broadway, but certainly not the numbers seen in recent years.) It’s a shame, because things are about as bad now as they’ve ever been for migrants in the U.S. It’s a shame, because the “Operation Return to Sender” raids that have terrorized migrant communities across the country were a direct response to the restrictionist backlash resulting from the remarkable pro-migrant rallies of early 2006. DHS Secretary Chertoff has explained that the raids are a tool to push businesses and migrant groups towards a comprehensive solution. It’s also part of the “enforcement by attrition” policy promoted by restrictionists and adopted in recent years by the Bush administration. If Bush is a pro-migrant president, he sure has a funny way of showing it.

The low numbers, then, are a clear indication that the restrictionists—backed squarely by the U.S. government—currently have the upper hand in the public square. But that's not the whole story by any means . . .

[Continued at Citizen Orange]

8 comments:

Horace said...

What would you consider defeat? The marches were an abject failure despite the spin by advocates of the great invasion. The end is near for your movement.

John said...

It would seem that those who merely desire that our prospective immigrants follow our immigration rules makdes them subject to being characterized as a restrictionist. By that measure the only people who wouldn't be restrictionists are those who would promote open borders, rules be damned. What's your definition of a restrictionist, Yave?

Publius said...

Horace, do you think that Yave is having a Dobbsian moment and can't handle the truth? He seems to be rationalizing and in a state of denial.

yave said...

Thanks for stopping by.

Billie B said...

Is that a current picture, Yave? It certainly represents your level of maturity.

How about those raids in Postville? I haven't heard of any major outcry of support by other than a few Latinos. Maybe America really doesn't care.

yave said...

Anyone who has nothing substantive to add to the conversation will have their comments deleted. There is ample space on restrictionist blogs for these types of comments; I don't have to tolerate them here.

sandy said...

Then it'll be interesting to see you delete your own comments. Since few people actually visit, it will be a lonely place without a thing to say.

yave said...

On that note, thanks for driving up my admittedly meager traffic. Y'all come back, now!

And I've been accused of many things, but not having something to say about any given subject is not one of them.