One of the most memorable things Rachel Maddow said in “Raise Hell,” a documentary about reporter Molly Ivins was, “She wasn’t afraid to get angry.” The imprisonment of children near our southern border demands our anger: for details, see last week’s blog. Every religious tradition believes in the spark of the divine in the human and the call to protect the innocent. Hence, as promised, this week’s blog explores ways to protest.
Call Your Representative
This is the phone number for the House and Senate Switchboard.
Tell them who your representative is; they will connect you directly to that person.
You may talk to a tape or speak with an aide; make your message succinct: “I’m a constituent, calling to ask what N______ (insert name of Congressperson) is doing to stop the imprisonment of children at the southern border. I’m appalled that my taxes are supporting for-profit prisons which keep children in cages and make huge sums off their misery. These children have not committed a crime. How will you stop this human rights abuse?
Encourage members of your church, synagogue or mosque to call too. If you have contacts in the news media, ask them to keep up pressure to close the camps.
Put the creche in a cage; Post this poem
Last year, many churches placed their crib scenes within cages, saying symbolically: the children in cages are Christ himself. For Christian traditions preparing Advent resources, here is a poem drawing a parallel between the holy family and refugee children today. You have permission to reprint in your non-profit bulletins, etc.
Nativity Scene, 2019
by Kathy Coffey
Infant in a cage,
Magi banned from travel.
Desperate parents fleeing
murderous thugs, saving
the child’s life. While
Herod-in-Chief names them
thieves and murderers, amasses
armies to defend rampant fear.
The moral unraveling not so
easily packaged as the creche:
we tolerated this atrocity.
Still on southern borders
a child sleeps beneath aluminum foil,
wakes to florescent lights on wire mesh.