On Nov. 14, in response to a statewide call to action, activists in Los Angeles gathered in unity with the Alliance to Defend Immigrants. The action and car caravan, starting at Mariachi Plaza and attracting about 200 activists, demanded the abolition of ICE and accountability for its atrocities.
The event was hosted by the newly formed coalition consisting of DSA LA, Freedom Socialist Party, Marx 21 USA, and Never Again Action. Event sponsors Critical Resistance LA, Punto Rojo Magazine, SGV Greens, LA Revolutionary Socialists, Shut Down CA Concentration Camps, and PSL also attended.
Jose Gutierrez, a member of Critical Resistance, called for an end to national borders that deprive workers of natural rights, and said the time is now to hold the upcoming administration accountable for current conditions that continue into the next four years. Jess Steever, an activist with the Freedom Socialist Party, highlighted the leadership of Black women and other women of color during this period. They pointed to Dawn Wooten, a nurse, who blew the whistle on the forced sterilization happening in American detention centers, turning the public eye towards this massive violation of reproductive rights.
The crowd then took to the streets with chants of “Cops and borders, we don’t need them, what we need is total freedom.” The group held a banner drop over the Freeway 5 overpass on Cesar Chavez Avenue restating the demands to end forced sterilizations, deportations, and the racist anti-immigrant system as a whole.
‘An oppressive occupying force‘
As the group marched through Boyle Heights, community members cheered and some joined the following car caravan. The march made its way towards the Hollenbeck Community Police Station, which a member of Punto Rojo Magazine described as an oppressive occupying force.
Event organizers highlighted the Great American Strike (also called A Day Without an Immigrant) of Mayday 2006 where hundreds of thousands took to streets to demand immigrants’ rights and the extension of human rights to all people. This historic event showed how vital immigrants are to the United States economy.
The time is now for us, as socialists, to raise class consciousness regarding immigrants’ rights and equality through organized struggle. All progressives and revolutionaries must stand in solidarity with the movement to defund the anti-immigrant state apparatus and end anti-immigrant policies by any means necessary.
Image: Carolina Vega/Liberation News