When my friends and family found out that I’d partaken in an act
of civil disobedience this past Tuesday, their immediate reaction was to flood
me with questions about the arrest. A couple of emotions and sentiments were
expressed, much of which were either excitement and/or concern. While the civil
disobedience act itself allowed me to experience strong feelings of solidarity
and oneness, to me the occurrences and processes leading up to the action
itself were every bit as important and incredible.

My experience began with about another 150 people partaking in a
pilgrimage walk from ICE Headquarters in Chicago to the Broadview Detention
Center. Along our half-marathon walk (13 miles), during our communal lunches
and conversations, while were are huddled outside of the Broadview Detention
Center, and up to the moments leading up to, and during the civil disobedience
act itself, I saw and talked some of the most incredibly inspiring and
empowering community leaders I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.

It was my personal decision to partake in act of civil
disobedience near the Broadview Detention Center out of a desire to stand in
solidarity with the families and individuals experience unimaginable suffering
and who are those most directly affected by our current immigration system.
Everything that I saw and experienced along the way only reassured me of my
decision to partake in an act of civil disobedience. The last two days and all
the time and effort that went into organizing these actions were all for a
precise end. As the crowds so excitedly reiterated time and time again,
“Two Million is Too Many. Stop Deportations Now!”

At the end of the day, it was the inspiring community leaders and
activists, the community members and allies, the marchers and participants, and
undocumented, unafraid, families and individuals, who really stole the show!
When one considers all this and all the work and community organizing that is
yet to come but most certainly will come, all we did was simply get
arrested. ​

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55 thoughts on “Reflection by Lissette Castillo: Stop Deportations Action

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