Make Mt. Airy a Sanctuary Neighborhood

Sunset Park, Brooklyn, and Capitol Hill, Seattle, are declaring themselves Sanctuary Neighborhoods. Do you want to see Mt. Airy added to the list? Join up with other concerned residents, community organizers, business leaders and property owners at a meeting Thursday, March 23, at 7:30 p.m. at 555 Carpenter Lane to consider a plan.

Our neighborhood has a proud history of welcoming people who are unwelcome elsewhere because of race or religion. So we propose to stand with the City of Philadelphia, reinforcing its determination to protect this sanctuary principle.

We do so from hard calculations as well as soft hearts. We forbid the federal government from targeting any religious group to protect our own freedom of faith. And while immigration officials sweep neighborhoods looking for Mexicans and Muslims, we assert that no home may be entered without a warrant, nor anyone held without legal counsel.

America is already protected by walls. The Bill of Rights is a tall wall protecting Americans from our government. These amendments to the Constitution prohibit government from shutting you up, attacking your religion, putting you in jail without a jury trial, torturing you, taking away your guns, invading your home without a warrant or taking your property for profit. These statutes of liberty are even more important than the Statue of Liberty. 

We especially resist the criminalization of illegal immigration because it feeds the prison industry. Expansion of prisons endangers and taxes us all. American rights are strong only when they defend everybody, including people we fear. Because when the government can shut down others, we are next.

Governments always stir up fear, against anarchists, socialists, Communists, pot-smokers, foreigners, blacks, Mexicans, Muslims. Makes it easier for government —Democrat or Republican — to weaken your rights. Because when you're weaker, the corporations and bankers can foreclose your homes, export your jobs, raise insurance premiums, take your guns, or cancel your liberties. The first wall we need is around Wall Street.

By creating a list of Mount Airy neighborhood resources for immigrants, we all become better able to trade with and fund one another, regardless of federal retaliation.

We start by convening a core group consisting of people on relevant social media lists, recognized community leaders, plus immigrant and Latino and Muslim allies. Draft a declaration of intent. Create a list of specific neighborhood resources available to immigrants. Publicize.

Considering joining us as we start organizing this effort March 23.

— Paul Glover