Immigration Activists End Fast

Follow up on Eliseo Medina fast in Washington D.C. trying to get the Republicans to respond to the actual problems of America.

“Longtime labor leader, Eliseo Medina,  and two other advocates of an immigration overhaul ended their water-only fasts on Tuesday in a tent on the National Mall, the 22nd day of an effort to press the House to take up legislation on the issue.

Cristian Avila, 23, a student from Arizona, and Dae Joong Yoon, 43, the executive director of a Korean immigrant organization in Los Angeles, also ended their fasts. Lisa Sharon Harper of Sojourners, a religious group, ended a three-week fast in which she had been drinking juice.

In a statement, the activists said they had “succeeded in raising awareness about families being ripped apart by deportation.” But they acknowledged that the protest had not produced any action in the House. They said Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio had not responded to invitations to meet with them.”

Immigration Medina

From Miriam Pawel at the SF Chronicle:

…the lessons of the farmworkers’ struggle illustrate the strategic importance of Medina’s fast.

Medina’s fast has forced the immigration debate back into the public discourse just as the issue was slipping out of sight. Over the past three weeks, political, labor and civic leaders have stopped by the tent where Medina fasts, a stone’s throw from the Capitol. On Friday, the president and Michelle Obama dropped in for a 40-minute chat.

The contrast between the sacrifice of the fasters and the intransigence of their adversaries generates outrage that helps build public support. When you sacrifice, Chavez often said, you inspire others to help