An Undocumented History of US Immigration Policy
Guest speaker: Martin Chamorro
Many Americans believe the debates over a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, the legality of sanctuary cities, and the cultural concerns raised by an influx of immigrants are particularly modern and unique issues brought on by terrorism and mass migration from Mexico. The fact is, however, that these debates have been raging in America since the immediate aftermath of the Revolutionary war. Martín Chamorro was himself an undocumented immigrant. He and his family lived illegally in the United States for nearly 15 years until they were granted legal residency and a pathway to citizenship. As a result of his experience, Chamorro went on to earn a PhD studying the justice of immigration policy. Today, he owns his own business and is an example of what is possible when we give undocumented people a chance to become full members of our community. In this talk, he invites us to learn from the troubled, yet rich history of American immigration to reach a level of understanding between those with fears about immigrants and those with hopes for immigrants. We’ll explore the topic through history, personal stories, and by examining fairly the arguments that give rise to the fears many people have toward immigrants both documented and undocumented. Finally, for those with hopes for immigrants, we’ll discuss real ways to become proactive allies in our local communities so that together, with the immigrant members of our communities, we can change American immigration policy.
Speaker bio: Martín Chamorro came to Boulder in 2005 to attend graduate school at the University of Colorado, Boulder. In 2013, he received his Ph.D. in philosophy for his academic work on the philosophy of immigration policy. As an adjunct professor at CU Boulder, he taught political philosophy and applied ethics until 2014. Shortly after, he left his teaching position in order to co-found BigSIS, a software company that provides administrative help to independent schools all over the US. Since moving to to Boulder, Martín has been active in several local organizations that do advocacy work for immigrants in the state of Colorado including VOICE, CIRC, and the Latino Task Force.
$5 suggested donation but no one will be turned away.
Childcare will be provided. Please email names, ages, and any allergies or medical conditions to BoulderSURJ@gmail.com by Thursday, March 16th.
If you’d like to be in touch with us about accommodations for a disability, please email Suzy at BoulderSURJ@gmail.com.
Note: SURJ is an organization focused on moving more white folks into action for racial justice, but this meeting will be a multi-racial space. All are welcome.