On a hot Sunday, July 9, hundreds gathered in front of the Enoch Pratt Free Library, blocks away from Baltimore’s Patterson Park.
Like in many cities across the United States, we gathered because the park, embedded in Baltimore’s Latinx community, continues to be targeted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids. We rallied because we oppose not only these raids, but like national organization Mijente, we know our neighborhoods are stronger and safer without policing, borders, immigration bans, and ICE raids.
Reminded of the importance of taking care of our people and called to action by Mama Victory, local organizer and the mother of Victorious Swift the 19-year-old Baltimore art student killed in March weeks before his graduation, we headed to the park.
Core local organizers, including fierce leadership by young Black and Brown folks with The Baltimore Algebra Project, led the chants, and the local and national participants marched with signs like ICE-FREE BALTIMORE, We are VICTORIOUS and NO ICE RAIDS IN OUR COMMUNITIES.
With a federal administration that continues to champion white supremacist policies — immigration bans and border walls — our political moment is like too many before. Resistance isn’t futile, rather across the country, it is our only pathway, together.
Also notable, this march was the first time, and hopefully not the last, that the Free Minds Free People gathering ended with an action, and with delicious cupcakes and cakes, made by the amazing Christina “V” Villarreal.