Statement of Laphonza Butler, President of SEIU California State Council, on Rep. Miller’s retirement announcement:
“Rep. Miller’s decision not to pursue re-election shows the growing strength of the voters who support an inclusive and open society, and the dwindling number of GOP representatives who believe they can stand in the way of comprehensive immigration reform.”
“Miller’s retirement will be a signal to others in his party that they must too heed the lessons of the ‘187 effect’: embrace the growing call for reform that strengthens families, enhances our national security and boosts our economy, or get out of the way as the nation’s emerging electorate grows in strength at the ballot box.”
“It’s no coincidence Miller’s retirement comes after thousands of working men and women joined immigration advocates, human rights activists, civil rights activists, DREAMers and business and community organizations to mobilize immigration voters in CD 31. Together, Mi Familia Vota, SEIU and allies have identified more than 4,000 immigration voters in the district in the last 6 months.”
“SEIU’s men and women stand alongside our immigrant brothers and sisters to celebrate this victory, knowing that together we have the power to change Congress by electing representatives dedicated to opportunities for ALL California families.”
February 13, 2014
Press inquiries, please contact: Christopher Calhoun, SEIU, (323) 215-5068
Happy Black History Month!
To keep the celebration going, please enjoy this video and photo album of our SEIU ULTCW members, leaders, and families taking part in this year’s Kingdom Day Parade in Los Angeles.
Let us continue to advance together on our Drive to Dignity Campaign. Let us celebrate this month and what it represents, by continuing to fight for all those who call California home!
Renowned abolitionist and suffragist, Sojourner Truth, poignantly remarked, “Truth is powerful and it prevails.”
Legendary abolitionist, Frederick Douglass, famously proclaimed, “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.”
These sentiments, and the accomplishments of their speakers, were present in 1925 when history professor, Carter G. Woodson, made the case for spotlighting the contributions of black Americans, each February (the month of Frederick Douglass’ birth).
The son of a former slave, Professor Woodson observed that African Americans were “overlooked, ignored, and even suppressed by the writers of history textbooks and the teachers who use them.” He brought the first national “Negro History Week” into being in 1926, when Jim Crow laws, and every form of discrimination and segregation, including the denial of marriage, voting, and property rights on the basis of race, remained legal. The Supreme Court had not yet overturned Plessy v. Ferguson, and the practice of lynching persisted.
Like Professor Woodson, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had faith in the capacity of all people to embrace diversity, and form bonds of common humanity.
Dr. King unflinchingly posited, “I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality…. I believe that unarmed Truth and unconditional Love will have the final word.”
Our union is strong because its members are from every background and walk of life. We are not SEIU ULTCW, without our African American, Afro-Caribbean, Afro-Latino, and African founders, members, and leaders, just as the United States could not exist without the Diaspora.
February serves as a reminder of this fact, Whether we are black or not; whether our family tree has deep roots in this country, or we are recent arrivals, Black History Month is our month.
As Dr. King poetically and accurately articulated, “We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”