Catalyst is reeling from the barrage of news last week: white nationalist fueled massacres targeting Latinx and Black people, a massive workplace immigration raid in Mississippi that rounded up 680 immigrant workers and left thousands of children without anyone to come home to after school, the unilateral US blockade of Venezuela, India’s expanding colonization of Kashmir, and the attempted assassination of a Chinese American human rights volunteer in the Philippines.
In response to the white nationalist shooting in El Paso, we had a letter published in this weekend’s USA Today, sharing the call to deny white nationalism a base and a commitment to confronting it everywhere.
The letter reads:
“When I heard about the white nationalist hate-fueled massacre in El Paso, a place where I worked and studied years ago, I went through a range of emotions. I moved through shock, to concern for my loved ones, to sadness, to rage. I’m stuck on the rage.
“My rage is directed at white nationalists who claim that their cruel inhuman acts are in the service of protecting this country for people who happen to look like me. They are attacking and killing people of color and have the nerve to say that they are somehow doing it on my behalf. They are locking tens of thousands of children in cages and ripping families apart. White people, what are we going to do about this?
“I am channeling my rage into a sense of responsibility. It is my responsibility to reclaim my voice and use it in the service of making the world more just. I am making a commitment and I invite my fellow white people to join me in it. I commit to working with other people—white people and people of color—to dismantle racism whether it expresses itself in the hand holding a gun or the hand signing an executive order.
“Now is the time to speak out in every space we’re in. Now is the time to join with other people and build organizations to combat racism. Now is the time to deny white nationalism its base of white people.”
We are in a moment where culture shift is crucial. Will white nationalists gain more of a platform or can we use every moment of violence to push the conversation towards the world we want to see? Letters to the editor are among the most read part of any newspaper or magazine, and a publication like USA Today has a daily readership of 3 million; that’s a lot of people to reach. So let’s make sure we get our opinions out there. Let’s win the culture war. Here’s a guide on how to write letters to the editor that will get placed.
And this week, please support immigrant organizations in Mississippi working to respond to last week’s raid, which targeted workers at Koch Food who had advocated for and won their rights after suing the company:
1) Southeast Immigrant Rights Network is helping on the ground. They created this form that anyone wanting to help can fill out. Share widely: https://form.jotform.com/92186452663160
2) Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance is a state-wide group coordinating actions to help immigrant families affected by the raids. . Donate to them at https://yourmira.wpcomstaging.com/
With rage and commitment,
Lee Gargagliano on behalf of Catalyst Project