Since when is a human being “illegal”?

Like so many of you (I presume!), I’ve been heartbroken and outraged while reading and listening to news reports all week about the Trump administration’s new “zero tolerance” immigration policy that calls for separating incoming migrant children from their parents. There was the glimpse inside the Casa Padre facility that’s been housing detained children inside a former Walmart. Then the announcement that the administration will erect tent cities to house more migrant children. And then there was Jeff Sessions’ use of a Bible verse to try and justify these actions.

If you’ve been trying to figure out what you can do about all of this, here are some suggestions for specific actions you can take.

The Racist History of Illegal Immigration

Today, the president is speaking at a roundtable discussion on immigration, where his signature overt racism will surely be on full display. That racism isn't just a Trump thing—it's been part of the discussion on "illegal immigration" for decades.

Posted by Racist History on Wednesday, May 23, 2018

When did we start calling people “illegal” Anyway?

Aside from the fact that this policy of separating children and parents is so completely unconscionable, I have also been cringing every time I hear an administration official or spokesperson use the term “illegal immigrants.” Which is why I was really grateful to see this video from Racist History on my Facebook timeline looking back to when we first started using the term “illegal” to describe human beings immigrating to the U.S. It’s only 3 minutes long and worth watching to better understand where we’ve gone wrong with immigration.

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Catherine Wigginton Greene
Written by
Catherine Wigginton Greene
Executive Director of Content and Engagement
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