Monday, January 20, 2014

Why We Can't Wait

On this MLK Day, I was on campus early to help coordinate students, faculty, and staff who were participating in the Nashville Freedom March.  Things ran as smoothly as possible with so many folks gathering in two places to catch buses.  While the march is short, I appreciate the symbolism if it, especially with its starting point at Jefferson Street Baptist Church in North Nashville.

Upon returning to campus, I walked into a lunchtime symposium, mostly, if I'm being honest, to snag the free lunch being offered.  Then, I realized the speaker was talking about immigration reform, and I spent a good part of the weekend reading about immigration reform for a class I'm auditing at Vanderbilt Divinity School.  "Why we can't wait any longer for comprehensive immigration reform," was the theme of Elliott Ozment's symposium, and he did an excellent job of making his point.  Between my reading and Ozment's impassioned presentation of the state of things related to immigration, I'm feeling pretty fired up about the injustice of our current system and the unwillingness of congress to do anything.  I know, I know, congress doesn't get things done, but in this regard, it seems like folks should be able to find some common ground. 

Shouldn't all the "family values" people be able to talk with immigration activists who want immigrant families to stay together?  

Shouldn't the big agri-businesses who want more access to temporary/seasonal workers be able to talk to folks seeking worker justice?

Do we really want to be a country motivated by fear and xenophobia?  Can people of faith really stay silent on this issue any longer?  I think not, and I hope not.

I'd love to engage in some conversation on this topic, so fire away.