Grief & the dismantling of Calais refugee camp

Ethiopian 16 year old at Jungle evacuation (AP Photo:Emilio Morenatti) Oct 26 2016

There are many wrenching photos of the violent dismantling of the Jungle refugee camp at Calais, France. There was of course, resistance to eviction by the residents & racist accounts calling that resistance “riots.”

We should never take distance from the emotional trauma of those whose odysseys cover thousands of miles through countless dangers to make a better life for themselves & their families back home.

This is a 16-year-old Ethiopian boy waiting in the cold to board a bus to a detention center where he will be jailed indefinitely in squalid, overcrowded conditions to wait out deportation. Barbarism is the very nature of European Union refugee policy.

We should not take distance & should also not stand silent. Immigrant & refugee rights are one of the most important political issues of our day, yoked inextricably to war, occupation, genocide, neoliberal economic policies.

The mantra of the immigration rights movement is “No human being is illegal.” No human being is alien to us.

Immigration is a human right. Open the damn borders.

(Photo by Emilio Morenatti/AP)