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Subhash Kateel

Care is the Core of Change | Subhash Kateel

Wednesday, 17 October 2012 03:00 Published in Community Care

CommunityCareYesterday, an old colleague from the immigrant rights movement, B. Loewe wrote a thought provoking piece on self-care titled, "An End to Self Care." After I read the piece, I told him how hard it was to not have an immediate and viscerally negative reaction to it. After we spoke, I realized that some of my reaction was based more on what I thought he was saying than what he was actually saying. But other parts of my reaction felt valid enough for me to respond to the piece.

Most of B.'s (I really should have asked him how to put an apostrophe by his name) primary point, as I understood it, is compelling enough:

"..self-care... inherently rejects collective responsibility for each other's well-being..."

But as I kept reading, I got a sense of where my reaction was coming from:

0615-obama-Dream-Act-stall full 600To be part of the immigrant rights movement is to really understand loss and losing in the deepest sense. Attending some sort of funeral, having friends and family that are in this country one day and permanently exiled the next, watching parents break down in tears in the last five minutes of a detention center visit and asking yourself, "is that really legal" multiple times after documenting an ICE raid are all collateral consequences of a broken system and the fight against it. I even get tired of repeating the same, still relevant points, about an emerging apartheid state in articles I write every couple of years, because things always seem to get predictably worse.

alexanderWhile Florida is still raw from the death of Trayvon Martin, a new incident of injustice may be unfolding a few hours away in Jacksonville, Florida, the home district of Angela Corey, the "special" prosecutor in Trayvon's case.  In a slight twist of irony, the "stand your ground" (or more properly " justifiable use of force") statutes are also being invoked in this case, except by an alleged victim of domestic violence that says she was defending herself against an abusive husband. 

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About the Author

  • Subhash Kateel has been organizing immigrant communities for over twelve years. He was the initiator of the detention and deportation workfor  Desis Rising Up and Moving and of co-Founder of Families For Freedom, a multi-ethnic network of immigrants facing and fighting deportation in 2002. He was also an organizer with the Florida Immigrant Coalition helping to develop community responses to ICE raids, detentions and deportations.  Besides facilitating some of the most sought after know your rights trainings in the South East, he helped lead the We Are Florida! campaign that successfully stopped an Arizona-style anti-immigrant bill from passing in the Florida legislature.  He is now the co-host of Let's Talk About It!, a current events talk radio program.  He has called many places home, including Saginaw, Michigan, Brooklyn, New York and now Miami Florida.

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