If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, you know that I’ve been involved with other NC, GA, and DC activists to push back against ICE raids that swept up undocumented teenagers who arrived in the US as unaccompanied minors after 2014. One of these students, Wildin David Guillen Acosta, was on his way to Riverside High School in the school district where I teach, Durham Public Schools, when ICE agents grabbed him off the sidewalk in front of his house while his parents watched helplessly from the window of their house.
Last night, after more than 6 months of lobbying for his release, we learned that the immigration judge at the Stewart Detention Center in Georgia granted a bond of $10,000 for his release. Please consider joining us in pushing a GoFundMe campaign we are running to raise money for what I consider to be basically a ransom for a kidnapping. You may find the page for the campaign here. As I write this, we have already raised $8,750!
The timing of his prospective release is especially sweet because it should be in time for him to return to the place he should have never been taken from, Riverside High School here in Durham, to complete the last semester’s worth of classes needed for his graduation. I have met several of his teachers during trips I have made to Washington DC and Stewart Detention Center in GA for this campaign and I know they will be thrilled to see him in the school hallways again.
We were actually supposed to go back to Stewart Detention Center today in order to attend a bond hearing that had been scheduled for Wednesday morning. We were told this afternoon by Julie Mao of the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild in DC that the judge canceled the hearing and granted the bond in advance in order to prevent another caravan of activists from descending on SDC and bringing negative publicity and pressure to bear on them, as we did when we packed the courtroom for a bond hearing for Yefri from Charlotte earlier this summer. We often feel helpless against state power, and rightfully so in an electoral system rigged by legalized corruption. But this victory reminds me that we’re never quite as powerless as we are led to believe. Get organized, my friends.