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Milwaukee community members disrupt Obama’s speech, demand DACA for All!

By Paz Vale |
November 4, 2014
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Milwaukee community members disrupt Obama's speech.
Milwaukee community members disrupt Obama's speech. (Joe Bursky)

Milwaukee, WI - On Oct. 28, three community members, who support DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) for undocumented immigrants, interrupted President Obama’s speech during a Democratic Party campaign event supporting Mary Burke. Burke is running against Governor Scott Walker in this election.

Protesters chanted “Deporter in Chief! Stop deportations! DACA for all!” Obama had no choice but to acknowledge the protest to the crowd. He attempted to regain control of the situation by saying, “She is expressing her concern about immigration and the fact that we don’t have comprehensive immigration bill, the problem is she should be protesting the republicans who are blocking it in congress.”

Among the protesters were two undocumented activists, one a public school educator, the second a college student. The third, was an outspoken business woman whose brother-in-law is currently in deportation proceedings. By April 2014 Obama’s administration had already deported close to 2 million people during his tenure, more than any other president in history.

Luis Mora, one of the three protesters said, "I feel privileged to have obtained DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). It became a right for me to voice my concern for the folks who didn't qualify for this program. Folks like my parents and the million others who work harder and longer, day in and day out.”

Although the three were not alone in their beliefs, they faced a tough crowd of Obama supporters who went on to threaten and harass them for speaking out.

Leilani Lopez, one of the protesters said, “Today was an opportunity to bring to light an issue that is rarely addressed outside of immigrant communities. We, the people, had the opportunity to hold our president accountable. The raids, deportations, the separated families, have become an epidemic and people don’t even know what’s happening in their own land.”

Undocumented immigrants and families are tired of the false promises year after year. The Democrats held a majority in Congress early in Obama's first term. They had the chance of passing immigration reform and continue to shift the blame towards Republican politicians. Leilani stated, “We made our concerns evident to people who know little to nothing about them but those people and our president will have to open their ears, minds and hearts because we will not be silenced.” We demand that Obama take immediate action to alleviate the pain and suffering of our hard-working families.

In Milwaukee, activists and many more community members continue to fight for executive action on DACA and local issues such as driver’s licenses for all and restoring tuition equity for undocumented students in Wisconsin. When immigrant rights are under attack, we stand up, we fight back!