With the latest Ebola scare in the U.S. generating news attention and anxiety from coast to coast, a majority of Americans now want to impose a travel ban on the West African countries hardest hit by the virus. Unfortunately, calls for a travel ban draw from America’s long tradition of xenophobia and could be counter-productive to controlling the spread of Ebola in the U.S. and globally. The current fervor for banning travel from African countries such as Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone is based more on fear-mongering than on facts, and is fully in line with this country’s history … Read more “Should the U.S. Institute A Travel Ban to Deal Effectively With Ebola?”
Author: Prerna Lal
Prerna Lal is undocumented, unafraid and unapologetic. As a founder of DreamActivist, Prerna helped to create a robust network of highly-organized and diverse undocumented youth with digital engagement capacity. Since then, her model of organizing has been used by immigration organizations across the country to end deportations. Her work and commentary for immigrant rights has been featured in newspapers such as The New York Times, USA Today, CNN, and magazines such as the US News and World Report, as well as international outlets in a dozen countries.
Prerna currently resides in Washington D.C. with her same-sex U.S. citizen partner, and has been a Board Director at Immigration Equality, an organization that works on issues around LGBT immigrants, since 2010. She is currently working on publishing her first book.
When faced with a spectator who threw a banana at him during a football match, Brazillian soccer star, Dani Alves, merely picked up the banana and ate it.
Racism is a pervasive stain in European football. During matches, European football spectators frequently make “monkey noises” against black players on the field, and often throw bananas at them. With little action from their football clubs, players are expected to just deal with it on their own. So when Alves actually ate the banana thrown at him during a match, the world rejoiced.
Alves later explained his actions to the media… Read more “#WeAreAllMonkeys: Swallowing Racism Can’t Be the Only Way to Beat It”
The Supreme Court of the U.S. delivered a temporary death knell to racial equality in the state of Michigan today by upholding Michigan’s ban on affirmative action policies. In doing so, the Court clarified that the Constitution merely permits, but does not require, the use of the kind of race-conscious programs barred by the Michigan Constitution, and that individual states can choose to ban affirmative action programs. The decision comes on the heels of efforts by the California legislature to revive affirmative action.
I support affirmative action. Contrary to mainstream media claims, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are … Read more “Why We Should Fight Hard to Uphold Affirmative Action”
The Vaisakhi harvest celebration is a festive occasion of dancing, singing, music, and religious praise for many Sikh men and women, and marks the beginning of the Sikh New Year.
However, 37 Sikh men in El Paso, Texas, celebrated Vaisakhi in a truly unique fashion this year by launching a hunger-strike.
The 37 Indian nationals are detained at an immigration processing center in El Paso, Texas. How did they get there? Many, if not all, of them suffered religious persecution in their home countries, and tried to seek the protection of the U.S. by journeying through Moscow, Havana, Ecuador, … Read more “37 Sikh Men Are Now On A Hunger-Strike at El Paso To Protest Their Detention”
This week immigrant and LGBT civil rights leaders from the California Immigrant Youth Justice Alliance (CIYJA) sat down in the Democratic congressional offices of Rep. Xavier Becerra and Rep. Loretta Sanchez, demanding their leadership to stop the deportations. The action was in solidarity with the hunger-strike at the White House to call on the President to stop deportations, which started Tuesday.
Specifically, CIYJA engaged in this civil disobedience tactic with three specific goals:Provide leadership within the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on ending deportations; Publicly call on the President to expand deferred action for all and stop all deportations immediately;… Read more “Obama Sent ICE to Their Doorsteps So They Are Coming To His”
The majority of American museums are institutions of white male privilege. They usually “contemplate” a history of white male conquest uncritically, without space for alternative narratives. So when I heard of the new “Beyond Bollywood: Indian Americans Shape the Nation” exhibit at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, I warily went to explore it with low expectations.
Among the bright red and orange hues of the exhibit, I found Indian Americans, but I also found whiteness on display as the exhibit struggled to walk the fine line between highlighting successes and mentioning the struggles of this rich and diverse … Read more ““Beyond Bollywood” But Perhaps Not Beyond the White Gaze”
Coca-Cola won over most of the U.S., and my Facebook timeline this past week, on its multi-lingual ad spot, America The Beautiful, for the Superbowl. Watch it here:
Of course, not everyone was happy. The English-only crowd is never happy when they cannot understand any other language besides English. We’ll just mark up all the bigoted comments about the ad spot to a competency problem.
But liberals rejoiced. And therein lays the real problem with the advertisement.
I can’t be the only one who is critical and unhappy about how Coca-Cola, a union-bursting company selling toxic products, is … Read more “Killer Coke Uses Color To Rebrand Image”
How Justin Bieber Got Deported
Or actually, he didn’t.
Canadian teenage pop sensation, Justin Bieber, appears to be suffering from “affluenza.” But if he isn’t careful, he will be on a one-way ticket to Canada.
Last night, Bieber was charged with resisting arrest and a DUI after illegally participating in street-racing upon leaving a strip club. Police reports also show that he had consumed alcohol and marijuana, and he faces up to 6 months in jail. Earlier, Bieber’s mansion was raided after he allegedly damaged his neighbor’s home, causing $20,000 worth of damage , which constitutes a felony crime in California. He also allegedly assaulted … Read more “How Justin Bieber Got Deported”
Claudette Hubbard, a mother and grandmother to U.S. citizens, should have celebrated the holidays with her family in Compton, California.
Instead, with the coming of the New Year, she is still languishing in an immigration detention facility in Contra Costa, California.
Ms. Hubbard is not new to state-sponsored violence. When she was merely 16 years old in Jamaica, Claudette faced emotional and physical violence due to her sexual orientation. She was seriously beaten and suffered a concussion because her car was driven off the road. The Jamaican government not only acquiesces in the torture of LGBT individuals in Jamaica, but … Read more “Claudette Hubbard, Detained and Facing Deportation for Being Black in America”
While Congress struggled in 2013 to enact just and meaningful reform, and the President is close to surpassing 2 million deportations, immigrants won victories in many states and many levels.
In no particular order:
1. The Supreme Court Strikes Down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act
Undoubtedly, the fall of DOMA’s Section 3 has brought much-needed relief among members of the LGBT community. While there is much more left to do in terms of winning rights for all members of the LGBT community, over 36,000 bi-national same-sex couples can finally live together without worrying about imminent family separation … Read more “Top 10 Victories for Immigrant Rights in 2013”