God's Heart Has No Borders: How Religious Activists Are Working for Immigrant Rights

God's Heart Has No Borders: How Religious Activists Are Working for Immigrant Rights

God's Heart Has No Borders: How Religious Activists Are Working for Immigrant Rights

God's Heart Has No Borders: How Religious Activists Are Working for Immigrant Rights

Synopsis

In this timely and compelling account of the contribution to immigrant rights made by religious activists in post-1965 and post-9/11 America, Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo provides a comprehensive, close-up view of how Muslim, Christian, and Jewish groups are working to counter xenophobia. Against the hysteria prevalent in today's media, in which immigrants are often painted as a drain on the public coffers, inherently unassimilable, or an outright threat to national security, Hondagneu-Sotelo finds the intersection between migration and religion and calls attention to quieter voices, those dedicated to securing the human dignity of newcomers. Based on years of fieldwork conducted in California's major centers as well as in Chicago, this book considers Muslim Americans defending their civil liberties after 9/11, Christian activists responding to death and violence at the U.S-Mexico border, and Christian and Jewish clergy defending the labor rights of Latino immigrants. At a time when much attention has been given to religious fundamentalism and its capacity to incite violent conflict, God's Heart Has No Borders revises our understanding of the role of religion in social movements and demonstrates the nonviolent power of religious groups to address social injustices.

Excerpt

In the spring of 2006, millions of people across the United States took to the streets in what became the largest immigrant rights mobilization this country has ever seen. In downtown Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, and New York, and in hundreds of smaller cities throughout the nation, immigrants marched through the streets to protest a federal bill that would, among other things, make it a felony to aid undocumented immigrants. Dressed in white to symbolize peace and carrying American flags, the protestors raised their collective voices to demand legalization reform that would resolve the legal limbo of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants who live and work in the United States. On downtown boulevards across the nation, the marchers, who were predominantly but not exclusively Latino, chanted, “Aquí estamos, y no nos vamos” (We’re here, and we’re not leaving), “Hoy marchamos . . .

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