Zero-policy immigration issue is the motivator

“Galvanized by the images and voices of immigrant children separated from their parents by President Trump’s immigration policies, hundreds of thousands took to the streets Saturday in major cities and small towns across America to expressed outrage that they hope will carry over into the fall election,” reported the LA Times, June 30.

Idyllwild residents were no exception. Rallying support for “Families Belong Together,” Harmony Monument acted as ground zero at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 30, leaving little question that upwards of 175 residents demand immigration and refugee policy changes at U.S. borders.

Idyllwild-area residents gathered in front of Harmony Monument at 10 a.m. Saturday to do what thousands of people are doing all across the U.S. — marching in opposition to President Donald Trump’s zero-tolerance immigration policy. Between 100 and 200 people marched from the monument through Strawberry Creek Plaza, along the Fort and up, then down, North Circle Drive. Photo by Becky Clark

Led by a consortium of local community activists, the Idyllwild march became a flashpoint for placards and posters, with the chanting, “No hate! No Fear! Immigrants are welcome here!” Bronwyn Jones states, “I love this mountain village and the wonderful people who live, love and work here.”

Marching and chanting in unison, the group circled through Strawberry Creek Square, across the front of the Fort, up North Circle Drive and ultimately returned to the monument. Participants sporting Idyllwild Indivisible T-shirts mingled between participants carrying signs saying “What if They took your Children?” and “Practice Aloha.” Temple Har Shalom fielded a sign reminding “First they came for the children,” followed by “We are all family,” “I care! Do U?” “Proud Americans do Care” and “Proud Americans for family unity,” “Human Rights, Truth and Compassion.” Even children carried signs saying, “Families belong together.” “Resist; Grab ’Em by the 2018 Mid-Terms” and “We are all Immigrants” were common themes.

What is the takeaway from an epoch mobilization of free speech across the U.S. and in Idyllwild under the banner “Families Belong Together?” The National Domestic Workers Alliance Political Director Jess Morales Rocketto stated, “I have literally never seen Americans show up for immigrants like this.” But the subject is far from resolved.

Perhaps the answer lies in the fact that to date, MSNBC reports about 500 families have been reunited, yet thousands of children remain estranged from their families.