CROWD: Let us free Nelson! (repeat)
BETWEEN THE LINES: Both of Nelson’s teenage daughters spoke, including Arly.
ARLY PINOS: Hi everyone. I’m Arly, Nelson’s 13-year-old daughter. I wrote something to express my feelings on what has been going on with my father (cries) and how it has been affecting me. If my dad (unintelligible) this church, he’ll be taken away from me. It’s affecting not only my father, it’s affecting me as well. Every day I cry and cry; I can’t sleep at night. I can’t think straight in school and my grades have been lacking and I’m just overly stressed, all because ICE is trying to ruin my family (cries).
My father hasn’t done anything wrong. He crossed an imaginary line, so now he gets to be treated like trash? No, he is still a human being; he bleeds like any other person and he hurts like any other person. My father came to this country for a better way of living; instead he’s living in fear, not only him, but my mother and my siblings. If our country is so great, why are we making people suffer and go through these traumatic situations? I just want somebody to realize the type of pain my family is going through right now. These 281 days have been the hardest of my life, but I will not stop until my father is discharged and my family is together again. Thank you.
(APPLAUSE AND CHEERING)
BETWEEN THE LINES: Another of the speakers was Alan Dornan, who has been walking around his community since January on behalf of immigrants.
ALAN DORNAN: First of all, I want to say that I know that today is for Nelson. Today is for Nelson and every day until Nelson is free will be for Nelson. (Cheers) I have been walking for immigrants in my community in Wethersfield, Connecticut, since Jan. 25, the day on which I saw the U.S. Congress attempt to pass five bills, all of which they knew never could be passed, and I got mad. (cheers). So finally, after 78 years, after 78 years, I stepped across the line. I have walked for 226 days and I will continue to walk until I am no longer physically able to walk. I will walk for the DACA Dreamers, I will walk for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country (cheers). I will walk for the people on our borders. I will walk for the parents and children who have been inhumanely separated. I will walk for those people whose TPS (Temporary Protected Status) has been rescinded. I will walk for all the immigrants in the world. My life – whatever is left of it – is dedicated to immigrants because immigrants are the future of our nation. Whatever these white supremacists might say, they are on the wrong side of history. (Applause)