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Tendam on the Travel Ban

Alderman Tendam’s Statement to Northwestern University Students on the Travel Ban, Evanston as a Sanctuary City, and the Current Administration

Sanctuary cities make us all safer. Making people afraid to report violence in the home or on the streets hurts all of us. Telling our police to investigate violence rather than legal status helps all of us.

Immigration rights are human rights. America was built by immigrants. First and second generation Americans wrote our constitution. My husband is a first generation American—the son of a refugee.

The current president doesn’t understand America. He doesn’t understand our Constitution, and he doesn’t understand that his policies are making us less safe. Demonizing non-white, non-Christian people recruits extremists, and taking away civil rights from some people diminishes the rights of all people.

We cannot let this administration divide America.

Why am I here? As a Jewish man and an openly gay man, I know how important it is to stand up for myself. But I also know I would not be where I am if others had not stood up for me.

When we say we need to resist what’s happening now, we are saying stand up, rise up, and lift up everyone in this country. When someone attacks workers’ rights they are attacking all of our rights. When someone attacks the rights of Muslims, they are attacking my rights as a Jew, my rights as a gay man, and everyone’s rights as human beings.

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