Protesters gathered Saturday to support immigrant rights at rallies around the US, denouncing President-elect Donald Trump for his anti-immigrant rhetoric and his pledges to build a wall on the US-Mexican border and to crack down on Muslims entering the country.
In Chicago, more than 1,000 people poured into a teachers’ union hall to support immigrant rights and implore one another to fight for those rights against what they fear will be a hostile Trump administration.
In Los Angeles, several hundred people rallied at a downtown Mexican-American cultural center and plaza. Some carried signs saying “Here to Stay” and chanted “Si se puede,” Spanish for “Yes, we can.”
The protests mark the latest chapter in a movement that has evolved since 2006, when more than a million people took to the streets to protest a Republican-backed immigration bill that would have made it a crime to be in the country illegally.
The Washington crowd urged Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress not to undo the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, aimed at helping people like Kim who were brought to the country as children.
President Barack Obama in 2012 launched an executive effort to protect some young immigrants from deportation, after multiple proposals failed in Congress.
The creation of the DACA programme was heralded as a good first step by advocates who hoped it would be a prelude toward overhauling immigration laws. But that didn’t happen, and Republican-led states pushed back against Obama’s plans to expand the programme.
Now the focus is on the next administration. As a candidate, Trump promised his supporters stepped-up deportations and a Mexican-funded border wall, but it is unclear which plans the celebrity businessman will act on first, and when. And many immigrants are fearful of the campaign rhetoric but less motivated to protest in the absence of specific actions.
Many participants Saturday said they would keep the pressure on Trump and said they planned to participate in next Saturday’s Women’s March on Washington.
Source: Daily Sun, Dhaka, Bangladesh