Thursday, June 28, 2007

Faces of the Immigrant Rights Caucus

how do we do the things we do? and why?

I think the way we do things reflects a lot about our real beliefs and values. Not just the values in terms of words, but because the way we do things is what has been made real and visceral, made it into the body and the heart, beyond the intellect.

and so that's why I appreciate the way we opened up the orientation, a chance for all of us to meet new people in the Caucus, a space for people to congregate, to leave things, to express a visual solidarity.

It is one of the strengths, the power, and a product of a lot of love, many years of trust building, that these are leaders who are here to serve -- that reflect, that listen to the shared analyses and help encapsulate them. Listening to the same conversation in many places is helping us to consolidate, to bring together this analysis. So even tho the workshops are supposed to be different, sometimes they are similar. These are the wan hua (10,000 flowers) blossoming. Conversations, sparks, moments.

And that we were able to embody our movement -- the diversity of race, sexual orientation, gender presentation, and also, to bring with us as many parts of our whole selves as possible into the space - art, song, movement, visuals. I hope it's a piece that we can bring into being continuously in our work.

It's why I do popular education, but really, why that philosophy of wholeness, I attempt to bring into most everything I do. Organizing, political work, and even some times recreational activities -- transforming the spaces in which we live, work, play, sing, and love each other.

That's a vision I learned in part from the environmental justice movement, and from the many different kinds of feminist and womanist movements.

Other key elements of this work together, through which we enact the better world we dream, are dialogue, and collaboration.

As some of the folks I've been talking to about popular education have reminded me, just acknowledging our problems together are basic ingredients of transformational organizing. That it breaks the isolation of a problem and helps us realize the collective and systemic nature of oppression.

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