Take Me Out to the Ball Game
OK, so I didn’t actually go to the game, I went to the Anaheim Angels Stadium where this year’s All Star Game was being played, to be part of a protest with about 100 other people. We were not protesting baseball at all. Some of us are pretty avid ball fans. Our signs and our chants were to protest AZ’s SB1070 by asking that the All-Star Game planned for Phoenix in 2011 be moved elsewhere.
I had been invited by CLUE OC (Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice of Orange County) yet when I arrived it turned out I was the only minister present. Seems it is not only UU ministers who go on vacation in July. Most of the folks there were Latino/Latina, some bilingual, many Spanish speaking only. They represented several labor unions, young people from the “DreamTeam,” and others in groups such as “Janitors for Justice.” Enrique Morones was there from the Border Angels and he knew who UU’s were… that we were “Standing on the Side of Love!” My congregant Dawn Usher and I sang the song at the Labor Office. Several people asked Dawn and I to talk about our faith tradition with them and, of course, we happily obliged. I have also asked some of them to be in our pulpit.
It was a warm day in Anaheim, in the high 80′s, as we marched around a huge banner, our signs held high, chanting and passing out fliers. Mounted police were there as well as a pretty large police presence and they were all just great to us. The folks who were attending the games responses were everything from rude, to curious, and a good number of them supportive. We had lots of press attention.
We were all exhausted but exhilarated after several hours. I don’t think most people really understand the nature of the broken immigration process or want to face their own fears or the backlash against minorities as racially motivated. They only see this as a quick and less expensive fix to the real problems in our country.
If we keep showing up, everywhere, Standing on the Side of Love, we will be making the best of friends in the Latino/a/Hispanic community, as we did that day, and it will be impossible to ignore that Todos Somos Arizona. Si se puede!
Lee Marie Sanchez
Consulting Minister, UU Church in Anaheim