SHAFAQNA – Several Latino organizations and community members across the country came together on Friday to stand in solidarity with Muslims around the world.
Civil rights groups, faith groups, immigrant rights leaders, and activists from New York to Chicago to California showed unity for the Muslim community through prayer, vigils, human chains, and more.
Organizers said the #WeAreAllAmerica campaign came together in response to President Donald Trump’s executive order blocking Syrian refugees from entering the U.S. and suspending admissions of citizens of seven Muslim countries.
“We stand in solidarity with Muslims because they are our brothers and sisters … Angelenos, our friends,” said Polo Morales the political director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA). “They come to work, they contribute to the value of this country. When they are attacked we stand up with them.”
CHIRLA participated in the #WeAreAllAmerica movement by attending a mosque with members of the Muslim community and by hosting a meeting for the community. CHRILA is just one of the dozens of organizations that participated in California. “An attack on one group is an attack on all of us… and we stand in solidarity,” Morales told NBC Latino.
Latino allies in Arizona shared a similar sentiment. Promise Arizona held their local event in conjunction with the Islamic Community Center. Promise Arizona’s communications director James Garcia said that in Arizona, immigrants of any background were a target of one of the country’s most draconian anti-immigrant bills, Arizona Senate Bill 1070, which caused for thousands of Mexican immigrants to flee the state for fear of mass arrests and deportation.
“Latino groups, like Promise, which work to engage the community in civic activism, including registering to vote and getting involved in public policy issues, have a great stake in the protection of civil and human rights, which includes religious freedoms,” said Promise Arizona’s communication director James García.
“Standing with Muslim Americans, Muslim immigrants and the rights of people of color around the world not to be discriminated against is our way of showing solidarity with these groups and showing the Trump administration that we stand side by side against his bigoted policies.”
The organizers said explained that involving Latinos and non-Muslims in the activities is meant to show that the executive order impacts them as well.
“There executive orders are a gateway to something worse down the line. If we don’t stand with them worse things can start to happen to all of us,” Morales said.
“The ban announced last week affects all refugees around the world, including refugees from Latin American countries. Such a ban, including the Muslim ban, also delivers a message around the world that the U.S. is now willing to turn its back on those who for centuries have made their way to the United States in hopes of a better life, or to escape persecution and poverty,” Garcia concluded.