Fast for Families

by Joseph McKeown

We previously mentioned Rev. Samuel Rodriguez's fast for immigration reform, and he is not the only one. Activists with Fast for Families are fasting (no food or drink, except water) to "follow the examples of Cesar Chavez, Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi to touch the compassion and sensibilities of our elected leaders to address the moral crisis of an immigration system that fails to comport with our national values, our creeds and belief in justice." Last Friday Vice President Joe Biden visited the group at their tent on the National Mall. Other visitors have included Rep. David Valadao (R-CA), activist Gloria Steinem, Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Representative Denham (R-CA) and Reverend Jesse Jackson (who committed to a three day fast in solidarity). The fasting leaders, including among others Eliseo Medina, a prominent labor organizer, Sang Hyug Jung, a Korean immigrant and father of two DACA children, and Cristian Avila of Mi Familia Vota, are fasting "until they are medically prevented from continuing their efforts." FOX News reports the fast is spreading across the country.

UPDATE: President Obama and the First Lady visited. And the fast for four of the activists, who have been fasting on the National Mall since November 12, has ended.