August 01, 2012
Tuesday July 31st of 2012 was our first day of activities in Denver Colorado, starting off early in the morning with a warm breakfast lovely made by some of the local members of the Unitarian Universalist Church, followed by a quick workshop presented by local community organizers, who explained the severity of a local anti-migrant law called SB 90, that has been around for about 6 years, this law works in the same fashion than section 2B of Arizona’s law SB 1070 which was approved by the supreme court.
After that but before going to a rally/press conference at the state capitol, we broke into smaller groups to talk about how we could connect the struggle from Arizona with Colorado’s, also about the purpose of this Ride For Justice
Then we worked on some sign painting with some community organizers and members of El Centro Humanitario which is a day laborers center.
Once the signs were ready we headed to the state capitol, where some people shared their stories with us and the press, we heard heartbreaking testimonies, one of them was Esmeralda’s who had to seen her husbandbeing racially profiled for a Police man, then arrested and put in a Migrant detention center “When my husband got arrested, me and my family went through the worst experience of our lives, my son got so depressed that he tried to commit suicide twice, that’s why I stand and rise my voice, for all of those that somehow have to go through the same oppressive system” she said.
After that, some of the riders gave their testimonies, sharing empowering stories of how we came out of the shadows and lost their fear to rise their voices and to take action on our own to fight for justice and our dignity.
When the rally was ended, we came back to El Centro Humanitario to have lunch, which was prepared for agroup of ladies called El Centro’s Women’s Project, there were community members, jornaleros and organizers, before eating they offered a pray for the food that we were about to eat and for the riders, all the riders formed a small circle holding hands while the pray was said, people gathered around us and put their hands on our shoulders, passing us all their good vibes and positive energies, I can honestly say that was one of the most empowering things that I’ve gotten to be part of, after that we all shared food, smiles and more stories.
After lunch we had some time to keep working on future actions and our goals, around 6:00 pm we had dinner while the movie “A Better Life’’ was being screened, when it was over, we came back to the place where we are staying to have some rest because a day full of more activities awaits for us, because we all know this journey just started.
See photos for the event on facebook