The Montgomery County Senate Delegation in Maryland recently published a letter, not condemning the ongoing genocide and occupation in Palestine by the Israeli state, but rather an immigrant justice organization, CASA, that spoke out in support of Palestinians and their struggle for liberation.
CASA is a national organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for working-class Black, Latine, Indigenous, and immigrant communities with its power-building model focusing on human services, community organizing, and advocacy.
Recently, CASA has been in the news for “a rent stabilization bill that limits dramatic rent hikes and protects approximately 40%of the county’s population, the 400,000 Montgomery residents, who live in rental properties,” according to CASA’s website. This bill appealed to the immigrant population in Montgomery County because of the continued exploitation of immigrant communities in this county.
Both undocumented and documented immigrants are forced to leave their home country due to American foreign policy, and those same people are systematically forced into low-paying or no-paying jobs in the U.S. CASA organized and mobilized these people to address an issue that the county council was reluctant to address.
Last month the Montgomery County Senate delegation made criticisms about a post by CASA in support of Palestinians. In their letter, they named the executive director of CASA and made inflammatory remarks about him and the organization that has worked tirelessly for the immigrant population in Montgomery County, who are struggling against the ever-increasing, unlivable cost of living.
In this letter, the County Senate Delegation also claimed that they partnered side by side with CASA to support “Montgomery county values,” In order to protect Montgomery County values, the county did not collaborate with CASA side by side. When the Rent Stabilization Act was brought before the council, it was the oppressed and immigrant communities in Montgomery County that spoke up for their rights, banded together with CASA, addressed the growing expense of living, and resisted an insolvent institution that only had the interests of landlords in mind.
While the public rhetoric is “diversity, equity, and inclusion,” people know that these are empty words when the county uses taxpayer money to launch drone pilot programs, offers a $20,000 sign-on bonus for the police, and grants the police unfettered access to Montgomery College facilities.
The paternalistic tone of this letter, including the statement that we stand alongside a genocidal military outpost in the Middle East called ‘Israel’, is a warning to the masses and internally colonized masses that if you step out of line, we will take our scraps back and take the necessary steps to destroy you.
The oppressed masses are waking up and organizing themselves. CASA is standing in solidarity with the Palestinian people and on the right side of history.
From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!