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[SEE THE UPDATE (WITH THREE PHOTOS) AT THE BOTTOM! THIS FIRST PART WAS INITIALLY PUBLISHED ON TUESDAY]
A friend asked me last night about the fast that was taking place a mile or so away from my home in Brea — and I’m sorry to say that I didn’t know much about it. Then I went there this morning.
Now I do.
In the above photo, you’ll see not only the usual fashion ads for Brea Downtown, but information about the “Fast4Families event; Ana Lety Hernandez, one of the people fasting on the first day; a visitor to the site; Dayne Lee, Civic Participation Coordinator for the Korean Resource Center; a big “11 million” representing the estimated number of unauthorized residents currently in the U.S. — and, looming above them all, a neon sign announcing the presence of Rep. Ed Royce, or at least of his office.
This is a serious, polished effort at activism — one that it should be hard for Rep. Ed Royce to ignore. After all — it’s right outside of his office at 210 W. Birch Street, on the lovely (yes I do think it is) Birch Street Promenade.
Of course, when I say “polished,” I’m not necessary referring to every aspect of the police-approved urban campground. Let’s have a look:
Every day this week, you’ll be able to come see (and even be part of) the 24-hour-per-day protest. You’ll find daily events at 11 a.m. and prayer vigils every day at 6 p.m.
Five people are fasting for the full five days. Six others are fasting for one day apiece. The 11 people fasting on a single day represent the 11 million people residing in the U.S. without authorization.
You can also follow them on Twitter and Instagram, both at @occcopico; on Facebook at www.facebook.com/occcopico; and on YouTube at www.youtube.com/occcopico.
(I told you that these guys were organized!)
This may raise the question in your mind: what the heck is “occcopico” — and isn’t that too many “c”s to pronounce?
I can’t help you with the pronunciation, but they can help you contact your member of Congress to support immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship. The number is 888-979-7506. Or, to put it another way:
The sponsoring organizations are a combination of Community Labor and Faith-Based. They include the Korean Resource Center, the Orange County Labor Federation (with volunteers coming specifically from SEIU-USWW — United Service Workers West), and OCCCO — which stands for OC Congregation Community Organizing. And of course they’re focusing on districts where they think that they can make a difference!
(OK, some aspects of the approach, like constructing district maps, still do need some work.)
You have four days left — and the clock is already running on Day 2!
UPDATE, 11/21 8:15 a.m.
My wife and I were lured by three other Democratic Party of Orange County Executive Board members to come visit the site last night to keep people company in the rain. (With it being only a mile or so away from me, my usual “but Irvine is so faaaaaaaar” excuses didn’t work.) So I have some additional pix for you.
The Grand Finale/Closing Ceremonies/(I Forget Precisely What Term They Used For It) will take place tomorrow morning at 10 a.m., and as I recall are scheduled to be done by 11 a.m., following by a breakdown of the camp. If you’re near the lovely Birch Street Promenade in Beautiful Downtown Brea, come down and help us stare longingly up at Ed Royce’s boldly lit up office sign, hoping that someone from there might descend to street level and actually listen to people affected by his policies!
P.S. Have you called 888-979-7506 yet?