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writing for godot

Stop Calling It A Caravan

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Written by Arturo Tha Cuban   
Friday, 02 November 2018 07:16

It’s a pilgrimage. A migration born of human suffering and driven by the hands of our very own government.

Unless of course, you want to keep doing the bidding of Donald Trump and his racist followers.

This isn’t some kind of national emergency as Trump recently declared. A declaration leading to armed militias announcing that they will be at the border to meet these migrants.

It’s not an invasion either. Call that shit out. There are people suffering. Women with children and yes, some of them are men.

You know what they aren’t?

Terrorists. An army. They’re not people from China, India, or the Middle East. Even if they were from those countries, none of them would pose any type of threat to the United States.

Certainly not on the level of domestic terrorists who are largely white. Terrorists emboldened by the rhetoric of their supreme leader, Donald Trump.

Do you want to talk about an invasion? Let’s talk about the acts of terror since 9/11. Let’s talk about how 75% of those acts were committed by toxic white men.

Let’s talk about the invasion of the minds of the mentally ill who are so easily triggered by the words of the fascist who was selected by a foreign power and now sits in the highest office in the land. The so-called “Leader of the Free World”.

To be clear, I say mentally ill because racism is a disease prolific in the United States. A disease shared by very few other countries on the level that we see here in America. It’s a disease most Americans refuse to address or even acknowledge.

Meanwhile, the wholesale slaughter of many marginalized Americans continues unabated.

Dangerous racists emboldened by the rhetoric of our elected officials, talking heads and political pundits on certain news and alternative media channels, who push conspiracy theories and hateful language.

Language-driven by a false narrative built on the idea of white oppression. White male fragility. White male fear.

Language similar to that of folks using terminology like caravan instead of migrationInvasion instead of sanctuary.

Language used to dehumanize the struggle of folks who fear for their lives through no fault of their own.

People who suffer due to our nation’s interventions in the sovereignty of their homelands.

The drug war, coups, economic interventions. All by the hands of our very own government. To demonize these folks is to deny that the blame falls mostly on us. By the hands of our very own elected officials.

There is no invasion, no need for military intervention at the border. We’ve done enough of that. That same type of action is what leads to these migrations in the first place.

These migrations have been happening since the dawn of time.

These migratory patterns are not new and nothing to be feared. They happen with such frequency that we have extensive policies and funding set aside specifically to address them when they happen.

They are policies designed to be welcoming to those who have been displaced by our own interventions in Central and South America.

To be welcoming to those seeking asylum, seeking sanctuary, begging for safety from the tyranny and oppression of the regimes we helped put in place.

These people are suffering.

Yes, outside non-profit agencies help fund these migrations.

They do it because of the suffering that is inherent when walking thousands of miles seeking safety.

These groups of migrants travel in large numbers to protect themselves from gangs, cartels, traffickers, and drug smugglers.

They travel in large groups because of the most basic rule of humanity: safety in numbers.

Non-profits help bolster that security, help provide food, water, aid, health care, and clean up, as migrants make slow progress by walking thousands of miles. Across many nations and states, not all friendly, who sometimes exacerbate the plight of those making the journey.

Non-profits also provide legal aid to assist in the asylum process. To assist in helping secure the safety and sanctuary of those seeking peace and security. These are all things that are necessary and that no nation provides.

Services that are much needed.

The work of these outside agencies is welcomed and embraced by many. These efforts should be applauded, not denounced.

But if you pay attention to the rhetoric of racists and Donald Trump, this is all some big conspiracy. One designed to bring the United States down.

It’s nonsense and it’s dangerous.

So I ask you to put more focus on the plight and the suffering of these poor disenfranchised people. Stop using the rhetoric espoused by those who are driven by hateful language.

Shift the conversation. Speak up in defense of all migrants who seek asylum in the United States. Focus more on the truth and less on rhetoric.

Many media outlets have been called out for using similar language that only bolsters the racist rhetoric of our current administration and those who hinge on its every word.

But it’s not enough. Demand that ALL media outlets, including Fox News and One America News, to stop using rhetoric that emboldens the typical American racist. I know, those two outlets, in particular, will not stop using the language of hate or dog whistles. They’ve built their following doing that and they aren’t going to change anytime soon.

But it’s our job to call them out.

We must demand that the more credible media outlets stop using this language as well. We must ask them to focus more on the stories of the people’s suffering. On the risks being taken for nothing more than a simpler and safer existence.

To stop hate in the United States is to stand up to the racists who perpetuate it. To call it out.

Stop using their words.

Stop letting them drive the conversation.

Start using the truth.

Use it every damned time.

Let us, the truth tellers, steer the dialogue. Let’s own it.

And more importantly, let’s be welcoming to the migrants and refugees who our nation is responsible for displacing.

It’s up to us.

Every single one of us.

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