On November 9th, our nation woke up to the reality that we had elected an openly racist man who had called Mexican immigrants criminals, drug dealers, and rapists. A man who promised to build a wall across our southern border to keep the brown people out. It was shocking and unbelievable.
Since November 16th, Padres y Jóvenes Unidos in Denver, CO, has been working with allies and community members to resist.
On August 28th, Denver City Council passed an ordinance that is the product of input from affected community, the organizing of the Resistance, and the leadership of Denver Councilman Paul López and Councilwoman Robin Kniech. Throughout this process we have heard some opposition. We have heard that we don’t need this ordinance because so many things addressed in it already in practice. We believe that this policy could not have passed soon enough.
Since January 20th, our communities have been under constant and daily attack. We wake up each morning and ask ourselves what new policy, threat, or just plain insulting action the Executive Branch will act on today. And as time goes on his example is permeating throughout our society – and as we witnessed, in Charlottesville, racist white supremacists have been given license to hate openly and in our public spaces – just a few days ago with the pardon of Sheriff Arpaio our community was struck, not in the back – but right to our faces. When our highest office is propping up racial violence and forgiving public safety officers who have been convicted of racial discrimination and abuse – we must take action – we must resist.
On August 28th, Denver City Council voted 11-0 passing the Public Safety Enforcement Priority Act on second and final reading. The ordinance is now headed to Mayor Hancock’s desk, who has previously indicated strong support for the policy.
The passage of this ordinance, the changes to our statute will be in law and on the books – they will be there to hold every public official accountable – these laws will be there to draw a clear line. This ordinance is meaningful to our community – this ordinance means that we have each other’s back in Denver. The last time we checked, this was still a democracy and the rights of all people living in this nation were protected under the Constitution. This ordinance solidifies those rights and holds true to the values of our city – tonight we celebrate the passage of this ordinance. Tomorrow we look forward to continuing this work with our Council members and the Mayor. We will continue to resist against a Federal government that is going too far.
By Padres y Jovenes Unidos
Padres & Jóvenes Unidos (padresunidos.org).