Hundreds attend downtown Mountain View vigil protesting border detention camps, immigration policy


Over 300 people gathered at the corner of El Camino Real and Castro Street Friday night in a vigil protesting the incarceration and detention of asylum-seekers at the United States’ southern border.

The vigil, organized by Together We Will of Palo Alto and Mountain View, was one of 780 Lights for Liberty vigils held around the world on July 12.

Christine Case-Lo, a Together We Will member, said that the demonstration was humanitarian in nature, not political. “There are kids who are dying,” she said.

It would only take a shift in policy to allow the government to monitor those seeking asylum without separating families or keeping people in cages, without access to beds, pillows, water, or showers, Case-Lo said.

“I don’t care who started it, (it’s) now an enormous manufactured problem,” she said.

The crowd stood along the sidewalks at all four corners of the intersection and reached its peak around 8:30 p.m. Protesters held signs that said “Keep families together” and “Never again is now.” There was not a quiet moment during the event, which started at 7:30 p.m., either from the chants of “Show me what democracy looks like,” to the passing drivers honking their horns in support. Some cars drove down the same stretch of El Camino multiple times, honking and waving at protesters.

Most vigil attendees advocated for ending the separation of families, the dehumanization of immigrants and ending of inhumane conditions within the detention centers.

Mountain View resident Kathleen Miller said she attended the protest to exercise her First Amendment right of free speech and to document her outrage with how people are being treated by ICE and the U.S. Border Patrol. “As a white person, understanding that our fellow human beings who are brown and black are being treated horribly,” Miller said. “We have a problem with racism in America.”

Many held signs that said “We are all immigrants” and several people spoke of the United State’s history of restricting immigration or increasing deportation measures. Protesters said that the current anti-immigration policy is inherently racist.

Social worker Heliana Ramirez traveled to detention centers in Clint, Texas and Eloy, Arizona, and said that she is particularly concerned about how the trauma is affecting adolescent brains. She said that methodology to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is not adequate for the severe and continuous trauma children face while detained.

Ramirez said that most of the language around immigration is coded racist language, and that white immigrants are not the targets of Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids, which were expected to occur in the Bay Area starting Sunday. “White folks who are here without papers do not have to worry.”

The event culminated in a candle-light reading of poet Emma Lazarus' verse that's inscribed on the base of the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

Case-Lo said she recognized that not everyone could attend an organized event, but that lighting a candle on your front porch would be a way to let others know that you do not tolerate the current treatment of immigrants.

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33 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 15, 2019 at 11:24 am

When the President encourages racism from his base, it is important for everyone else to stand together against it. Show them what America is really about. Throw all those "get out of my country" and "go back to your country" white supremacists out of office!

51 people like this
Posted by Really
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Jul 15, 2019 at 11:38 am

As an American citizen I am outraged at the Democrat party for not only allowing an invasion of our country, but also encouraging it.

Little children, 2 and 3 years old are being sold in Mexico for $5,000, the Government of Mexico has confirmed this, so people can use them as insurance that if they get caught entering this country illegally, they will not be deported because of the child.

Children are being abandoned in the Arizona desert, left to die because the adult illegal made it into the country without being caught and they do not want the extra baggage with them.

There is nothing but fake outrage on the Democrat side as they are not proposing any fixes to the problem, yet they make the problem worse by saying they want open borders, abolish ICE, give drivers licenses to illegals, more and more benefits to illegals only sends the message around the world to come here illegally.

$23 Billion dollars a year, from taxpayers, is being spent on the illegal population in California for just Health Care and Education.

The priorities of the Democrat party is on full display here as this State can not even take care of it's legal residents, but an unlimited fund of money goes to the illegal's.

23 people like this
Posted by @Really; yes, REALLY.
a resident of Willowgate
on Jul 15, 2019 at 12:12 pm

> but an unlimited fund of money goes to the illegal's.

Amazing! Where do you get this crazy stuff? Even Fox won't repeat those lies.

If any of it were true, you would post links to substantiate (but it's hard work to substantiate lies, isn't it?)

Let's get rid of an easy lie: "as they are not proposing any fixes to the problem"

Don't you remember the White House visit in 2018, of Nancy and Chuck offering Trump $25 billion for border security? Trump had complete Republican control of both houses - and turned it down. Snatched Trumpian defeat out of the jaws of victory.

He doesn't care about real solutions, just creating conflict to try and get re-elected. Just wants to rile up, with constant lies, his low-information voters.

Like the poster above.


"Trump’s best chance for border wall funding at the level he wants came in February 2018, when Republican Senator Mike Rounds teamed up with independent Senator Angus King on compromise immigration legislation.

It included $25 billion over a decade to build a wall along the southern border and a path to citizenship for so-called Dreamers who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children. It also barred green card holders from sponsoring adult children for permanent residency and reoriented enforcement priorities to focus on criminals in the country illegally."

Trump had both the House and the Senate, an offer of $25 billion, and did NOTHING.

37 people like this
Posted by @Really; yes, REALLY.
a resident of Willowgate
on Jul 15, 2019 at 12:17 pm

Here's the link regarding the timelines where Trump, not once but TWICE, turned down $25 billion for border security. In exchange, he got.... (drumroll, please....) .... absolutely nothing.

Web Link

Face it, Trump-base: he's just not that into you. He talks/tweets a lot, but does nothing for *you*. Only tax cuts for billionaires and corporations.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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