Activists protested against Arizona’s immigration law SB 1070 outside the U.S Immigration Customs and Enforcement building in Chicago Thursday.
Many community activists and religious leaders are worried the U.S. Supreme Court will uphold the controversial law that places tight restrictions on undocumented immigrants. The court heard arguments in the case this week and will rule in June.
Immigration activists encouraged supporters to join them in an immigration march in Chicago on May 1.
“We don’t want Illinois or any other state to replicate what’s happening in Arizona,” said Margarito Diaz, President of CMRJB Workers United Local 969. “The only way to stop these racist laws, which have destroyed families, is by marching.”
Jose Landaverde, an activist and priest at Our Lady of Guadalupe Anglican Catholic Church, said he is asking for other religious leaders to get involved with the protests around the immigration law.
“The only way we can stop this is by protesting and gathering together to march,” Landaverde said.
Malik Mujahid, imam of the Downtown Islamic Center, spoke about immigration issues in the Latino community.
“The dehumanization of Latinos has gone to the highest possible level,” Mujahid said. “We need to march to use diversity as a restraint and hate as something to leave behind us.”
Not everyone agreed that the law should be overturned by the Supreme Court.
Ira Mehlman, national media director and spokesperson with the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in Washington, D.C., said everyone has a right to protest, but immigrant laws are in place to protect people of this country.
“If the federal government isn’t going to do it, the states and local government need to do it,” Mehlman said.
Supporters of immigrant rights and other issues will march on May Day leaving from Union Park, 1201 W. Randolph St., at 1 p.m. and ending in the Federal Plaza.