BAMN! rallies again for sanctuary city
By Nicole Cade
Members of BAMN attended the latest Lansing City Council meeting on Jan. 30.
BAMN is a coalition to defend affirmative action, integrations and immigrant rights for equality “By Any Means Necessary.”
Members rallied prior to the meeting, trying to persuade the council to make Lansing a sanctuary city. A sanctuary city would mean refuge for those immigrants in the Lansing area who are in fear of deportation.
Council members said they are concerned with President Donald Trump’s newest executive immigration order, which would greatly decrease funding to the city of Lansing.
The council was incredibly divided, and tabled the issue.
Gregory De Vries, a Lansing resident, attended the BAMN rally and the city council meeting. De Vries reflected on the meeting.
“We came out of that meeting feeling both disappointed and hopeful,” De Vries said. “They expressed concern at the potential financial consequences, even after several Lansing residents urged them to consider the wellbeing of vulnerable people.”
The leader of the Lansing area BAMN Coalition, Seth Kalis, had a lot to say about this particular meeting.
“They all claim to be in favor of progressive ideals and claim Lansing is a ‘welcoming city,’” Kalis said. “Mayor (Virg) Bernero gave a very nice speech about these ideals at the start of the meeting, but when faced with losing federal funds they are very quick to back down.
“After we spoke and the city council got to address us we were pleasantly surprised to hear Councilwoman (Kathie) Dunbar suggest that they should stay late to draft and vote on a resolution as soon as possible. She even went so far as to say that she “didn’t care about the $6 million.”
Kalis added that BAMN is “cautiously optimistic” about the council’s decision and will rally again before the meeting on Feb 13. For more information visit www.BAMN.com/