3 Books About Immigration You Can Read In A Single Sitting
The urgency of the immigration crisis cannot be understated. New reports indicate that just 364 of the more than 2,500+ immigrant children who were separated from their families under Donald Trump's "zero-tolerance" policy have been reunited with their families. According to Justice Department data provided to Kaiser Health News, the Trump administration has summoned 70+ children under the age of one to immigration court for deportation proceeding, a story that seems too atrociously dehumanizing to be true. Unfortunately, this is the reality of America, and this isn't a new problem.
There are many ways you can help the children and families suffering because of America's immigration policy: You can make a donation to the Young Center For Immigrant Children's Rights or one of many other organizations; you can call your legislators and demand they take action; you can volunteer on a local level to fight ICE raids and help those targeted by the agency; and you can make sure that you're as informed as possible on the issue and how it impacts real people.
In the three books below, three authors recount their personal experiences with an immigration system that is designed to enact indignity, death, and destruction upon some of the world's most vulnerable people:
'Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay In Forty Questions' by Valeria Luiselli
In this 100-page indictment of the U.S. immigration system, Valeria Luiselli writes about time spent volunteering as a translator for unaccompanied migrant children from Central America seeking legal representation in the United States. The stories she recounts of the children who journeyed through countries and deserts alone in the hopes of being granted asylum status in the United States will break your heart and move you to action. This essay is a call-to-action that every American needs to read.
'In The Country We Love' by Diane Guerrero
When she was just 14 years old, Orange Is the New Black actress Diane Guerrero was left alone in the United States after her parents, undocumented immigrants from Colombia, were deported. The separation of her family resulted in devastating and long-reaching consequences for her and her family, many of which she relates in this heart-wrenching memoir. (A version for young readers, My Family Divided, was recently released.)
'The Line Becomes A River' by Francisco Cantú
A former Border Patrol agent, Francisco Cantú writes about his firsthand experience with the dehumanizing nature of immigration policy in this brutal, unsparing memoir. The stories of the immigrants he encountered in his time as an agent and in his life as a citizen of the border will stick to your heart and compel you to action.