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Tuesday, May. 10, 2005 at 11:59 AM
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Subject: Racists in Laguna Beach
About 40 people from the group Save Our State and the Minutemen showed up today to picket the state-sanctioned Day Laborers Hiring Center in Laguna Beach!
With a goal of intimidating people from stopping to pick up and hire workers, they had signs reading "Arrest the Employers".
When cars pulled into the hiring center, the protesters
snuck up behind the cars to take pictures of the drivers
and license plates, and yelled at the drivers to "hire
Americans", and they chanted "arrest the employers".
They also had signs that said "Illegals are criminals"
and "Go Home", and yelled that the immigrant workers
were "disease carriers" and "vermin". They came from
all over California, so it was a state-wide mobilization.
It was totally disgusting.
A group called Southern California Human Rights
Network (SCHRN), out of UC-Riverside organized
a counter-protest that had about 30 people. (I wish
that I could have put out a lot of calls to try to get more
people out- but I found out about the protest at about
9:30 on the night before! The protest started at 7:00
in the morning, so sorry if I wasn't able to call you! We
need to get a lot more organized for next time)
We were able to physically stop the racists from intimidating and taking pictures of workers and people driving in to hire the workers and to counter their chants. We out-yelled them with chants like "Racists Go Home", "Immigrants are welcome",
"Work is a Human Right", etc. The vast majority of people driving by showed support for our signs, like "Work is a Human Right", "Hire Here", "Immigrants are Welcome" and "Queremos un Mundo sin Fronteras".
We were also able to talk a lot to the workers at the hiring center. I think that it gave them confidence that our side was out there, and they were helping us to shout down the racists and stop them from taking pictures.
The people who worked for the hiring center were also very supportive and glad that we were there. According to workers at the hiring center, the
number of workers hired today was normal for a Saturday.
What we needed, however, was a MASSIVE number of people to numerically drown out the racists and intimidate them from trying again.
We need to get a network of people who can
respond to this stuff at the last minute. The Minutemen have also announced plans to come to California in August.
We CAN'T allow this to happen in our backyard. These guys are emboldened by what just happened in Arizona, and we have to stop it from going unchallenged here. Like I said, the group that organized the protest was Southern California
Human Rights Network at UC Riverside. They're organizing a conference on May 28th to talk about what to do.
Their contact info is below. We also need to be ready to respond if they try to go to the hiring center again (apparently this was the 3rd time they had been there! But they don't usually go two weeks in a row.)
Hopefully we can organize a network here in LA of people who are interested in responding.
What do people think?
P.S. Below are two things: a link to the article from the LA Times that talks about the Minutemen coming in August, and the article about today's protest that I wrote up for Socialist Worker.
"Volunteers Needed to Patrol Border of San Diego" LATimes
Socialist Worker article:
LAGUNA BEACH, CA- About 40 people responded to
a call by the group Save Our State to picket the state-sanctioned
Day Laborers Hiring Center here today. With a goal of
intimidating people from stopping to pick up and hire workers,
members of Save Our State and the Minutemen gathered
with signs reading "Arrest the Employers". When cars pulled
into the hiring center, the protesters snuck up behind the
cars to take pictures of the drivers and license plates, and
yelled at the drivers to "hire Americans". They also carried
signs reading "Illegals are criminals" and "Go Home", and
yelled that the immigrant workers were "disease
carriers" and "vermin".
About 30 people counter-protested the racists. Organized
by the Southern California Human Rights Network (SCHRN),
the counter-protest confronted the racists and their message
with signs and chants of our own. The vast majority of people
driving by showed support for our signs, like "Work is a Human
Right", "Hire Here", "Immigrants are Welcome" and
"Queremos un Mundo sin Fronteras". We were able to
physically stop the racists from intimidating and taking pictures
of workers and people driving in to hire the workers and to
counter their chants. According to workers at the hiring
center, the number of workers hired today was normal for
Chris Hernandez, who helped to organize the counter-protest,
told Socialist Worker that since the Minutemen were in
Arizona, "the racist vigilantes are on a power trip targeting
people who just want to exercise their human right to work.
This is a new face on the same old thing, like the Texas
"We're going to start getting out there in the media and
voicing some kind of response. We need people to join
our demonstrations. We have a majority, and we need to
demonstrate to the racists that they are outnumbered," said
Sara Kozumeh, another organizer with SCHRN. The
Minutemen have announced plans to be on the California
border in August. We have to stop them with a massive
show of anti-racism and support for the rights of
undocumented workers and for human rights.
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LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 31 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
|Minutemen are US government sponsored
||they are paid goons
||Wednesday, May. 11, 2005 at 4:40 PM
|Immigration from desire or economic need??
||Wednesday, May. 11, 2005 at 8:49 PM
||Saturday, May. 14, 2005 at 12:58 PM
||Tuesday, May. 17, 2005 at 7:34 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:28 AM
|just look at their website
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 11:46 AM
|look at who negotiated nafta
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 11:58 AM
|Ad Hominem assclowns corrected
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 12:20 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 12:28 PM
||Gene Yuss compared to liberals
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 12:50 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:13 PM
|I've been erased
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:20 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:30 PM
||Bumpus H. Hounds
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:37 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:39 PM
|More cracked shells from the peanut gallery
||Bumpus H. Hounds
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 1:53 PM
|Please Bumpus, no!
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 2:00 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 2:03 PM
||Wednesday, May. 18, 2005 at 2:06 PM
|Get em all
||Wednesday, Jul. 06, 2005 at 9:28 AM
||Fredric L. Rice
||Thursday, Jul. 07, 2005 at 8:58 AM
|Follow the LAW
||Saturday, Jan. 21, 2006 at 6:13 PM
|corrupt politics of the Latin American countries
||Saturday, Jan. 21, 2006 at 6:23 PM
|Well Jesus, Dee
||Saturday, Jan. 21, 2006 at 9:28 PM
||Saturday, Jan. 21, 2006 at 11:30 PM
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