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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in immigration
White Kids Terrorize Ethnic Neighborhood, or: Another Long Night in Minneapolis

When we moved into this neighborhood some 35 years ago, it was dying. The storefronts on Lake Street were mostly boarded up.

Call it the American miracle. Immigration from Mexico, Central and South America, and Somalia turned this neighborhood around. Little ethnic mom-pop shops resurrected Lake Street.

Now every single one of those businesses is gone. Over the course of the past four nights, I have watched my neighborhood be systematically dismantled around me.

Last night it was the white kids' turn.

Hundreds of angry white kids—let me be nasty and say trust-fund anarchists from the suburbs—defied the governor's curfew orders and marched through a largely ethnic and immigrant neighborhood already traumatized by three nights of fires and looting.

I live just a few hundred feet from the epicenter of last night's destruction. More buildings and businesses—virtually all of them Latino-owned—were pillaged and torched. Four of them are still burning as I write this.

Truly, a mob is an organism with many legs and no brain.

“Why don't these kids all go back to the suburbs and leave us alone?” my next-door neighbor said to me as we stood on the sidewalk and watched the noisy march. Penny, who's African-American, is the block matriarch; she's lived here longer than anyone else.

If it weren't for the violence that accompanied it, it all would have been kind of funny. The whole thing had a defiance-for-the-sake-of-defiance “I'm not going to bed and Mommy/Daddy can't make me” feel to it.

Eventually, of course, the trust-fund anarchists went back to their apartments in other (quiet) neighborhoods, leaving behind them more burning buildings and more mayhem in a neighborhood already traumatized by its own destruction.

I have not the slightest doubt that the vast majority of those folks last night honestly want justice for George Floyd (1974-2002), an African-American man brutally murdered on Memorial Day by a white policeman only blocks from here. Believe me, so does everybody in this neighborhood.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Thanks Anthony.
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I used the Facebook and Email buttons to repost your blog on Facebook and mail it in to my local newspaper.
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    11:30 on Saturday night, and it's quiet in Minneapolis except for the military copters overhead, thank Goddess. Now that the polic
  • Aline "Macha" O'Brien
    Aline "Macha" O'Brien says #
    So sorry to learn of this, Steven. As I watched the conflagration I was wondering how close it was to your house. Now I know, an

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

A diaspora, a scattered and exiled people is held together mainly by shared stories and songs, customs and language. Through space and time, generations and movement, the traditions passed down change. They fade and dwindle, but they also are revived and brightened. They are added onto, embellished. Neighborhoods and cities become their territory, each gaining its own character, each city having a synthesis of all the waves of immigrants that enter its gates. Conquest, slavery, genocide, war, so many tragedies and trauma haunt us all in different ways. Expressing what has been lost and erased and  asking gods, spirits and ancestors why all these things happened, and asking who we are now, what are we becoming, what is this this idea, this great story we are all part of, called America? We struggle, who tells this larger story of who we are, who controls and steers it determines who are the heroes and the villains.

What was the original version of the story, of the song may not be remembered?  There are a thousand versions. How well it is sung or told and whether the people believe in its poetic truth and power matters more. Each people has a story of their journey of how they became American, each is a part of a great story, the story of America.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Bill-Baker-Pastel_20180702-172609_1.pngNot many Americans may feel much like celebrating the hallmarks of our country--liberty, justice, and freedom--this July 4th as we watch the shocking horrors experienced by asylum-seekers on our Mexican border, among other national tragedies. For many of us, the shame of what is happening is deep. Despite our protests, petition-signing, contacting our elected officials, political canvassing for the 2018 elections, monetary donations, and speaking-out in print and social media, we can still feel powerless to halt what is occurring. Whenever I feel a deeper level of outrage and frustration about government-policy attacks on people and Earth, however, I think of the tenacity of Indigenous Elders, particularly Native American women. Whenever I lapse into being shocked about today's news headlines, I only need to quickly remind myself of our American past and the treatment of Indigenous peoples, and how the events of today are merely another unfolding of what has been going on in this country since its birth. I am disturbed with America's interminable short-term-memory loop as I hear in the media connections between Japanese Internment camps during WWII and the immigrant detainment centers of today. So let me help you remember, America, about our country's history in relation to Native Americans, and how the detainment centers are just America's newest colonial-era Forts. I also want to remind those of us who are bone-weary (and afraid) about what is happening in our country to take the long-view, as the First Nations of Turtle Island do when they, too, are face to face with inhumane treatment. These Elders are our guides for Perseverance, Strategy, and an unshakeable Belief in the power of LOVE.  The image above is a work of art in pastels by New Mexican artist Bill Baker. Find more of his work at

b2ap3_thumbnail_flat550x550075f.jpgFirst of all, many of the people crossing the border from Mexico into the United States to seek asylum and a better life are Indios, Indigenous peoples of Mexico and Central America. For Native Americans living on sovereign tribal lands that the U.S./ Mexican border cuts through, the hassle to visit relatives, collect plant medicines, and ritually perform ceremonies as they have done for centuries is high. Border patrol officers rifle through medicine bundles, bags of sacred plants and objects, and can be extremely callous toward Indigenous Medicine People--even when those people have the legal right to move freely through their own sovereign lands. These border crossing impediments have been going on since the border was created, but over the years more citizens of Native nations have gained legal rights to cross unimpeded. This is a fight that is not included in any news coverage about the immigrants.

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Thank you so much for this compassionate post speaking truth about the connections between today's "migrant" policies and the past
  • Dr. Mays
    Dr. Mays says #
    Anne, Thank you so much for providing a forum for me, and so many others, to speak back to what is happening in our country--and t
Pagan News Beagle: Fiery Tuesday, April 19

Is climate change a form of "violence?" What actually happened when the Spanish conquered Mexico? And was the U.S. intervention in Libya the right call to make? It's Fiery Tuesday, our weekly segment on political and societal news from around the world, with stories addressing these questions and more. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

I moved to Ireland at autumn equinox in 2001. Autumn Equinox is inextricably wedded to migration as I remember the fourteen hour journey - three trains, a ferry and a car ride -that was the emigrant trail for me and our Household Goddess Sophie, our beloved and ancient tortoiseshell cat.  At dusk on September 21st  Tony's brother drove down the last road to our rental property. I was arriving sight unseen, since Tony had brought the dogs over the previous week.  The sphinx like profile of the Playbank hove into view and I was completely enchanted. That mountain has never let me go.


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  • Francesca De Grandis
    Francesca De Grandis says #
    I add my prayer to yours that Danu bless and rescue these refugees. Americans have been terriblly remiss about taking them in. T
Pagan News Beagle: Fiery Tuesday, September 8

Jamaica holds its first gay pride rally. Europe grapples with the ongoing refugee crisis. And women in Saudi Arabia gain some long-deserved political rights. It's Fiery Tuesday, our weekly take on political and societal news. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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PaganNewsBeagle Irish Heritage Day Edition 3-17-15

Today our FieryTuesday Pagan News Beagle celebrates the untold stories of overcoming oppression on this Irish heritage day. Irish slaves; real Irish history; Choctaw aid to Ireland; Irish emigrant letters; African American wins St Patrick's day essay contest.

Before the African slave trade to the Americas became institutionalized, another oppressed group provided slave labor (labeled "indentured servitude") for European colonization of the continent. Guess who? The Irish.

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