I woke up this morning ready to tell you about my new book, Marcher, Walker, Pilgrim. But news accounts of the huge migrant caravan of Central American refugees heading northward through Mexico has touched my heart deeply. I know some of you won’t like what I’m going to say, but I feel compelled to say it anyway.
Let them in! It’s a tough truth to accept, but U.S. policy in Central America has been a major contributing factor to the destabilization and corruption driving Hondurans, Guatemalans, and El Salvadorans from their homes. As this excellent article in the Independent points out, the U.S. is long overdue for a reckoning.
From the article: “America must acknowledge the role we played in creating this crisis over the past half-century and find a way to solve it. It isn’t only our raison d’être, it’s our moral responsibility. There is a humanitarian crisis in our own backyard, one we helped cause, and we must be willing to do our bit and help these desperate people any way we can.”
I know what it’s like to walk a long way. But I don’t know what it’s like to live in a country where human rights abuses are so horrific that you have no option but to flee, often with your children and few possessions. Here’s one news account that offers some additional insight.
I know I’m doing my part to help create a better world, but I wish I could do more. If I had another eight hours in the day, I’d organize a caravan from Iowa, walking south to the Mexican border, to welcome and offer help to the migrants. If anyone else thinks that’s a good idea, let’s meet at 10:00 this Saturday morning at Ritual Cafe to discuss it. I can’t lead the charge on it, but I’m happy to brainstorm ways in which we can help the caravan. I’m concerned what might happen to the migrants when they arrive at our border.
So, about Marcher, Walker, Pilgrim — this is the book I’ve been working on for four years. I’m excited to have it accomplished, and hope you’ll come to the book launch on Sunday, December 2 at 2:00 at 500 E Locust Street in Des Moines. I hope you’ll buy a book, or two, or three, too. (Think stocking stuffer . . . better than coal.) All proceeds support the work of Climate March.
Marcher, Walker, Pilgrim is my memoir from the 2014 Great March for Climate Action. The book’s cover reads: “On the 3,100-mile, 8-month walk from LA to DC in 2014, dozens of marchers became a mobile village — weathering harsh conditions, sharing joys and sorrows, and intensifying their commitment to the cause as they sounded the alarm about the climate crisis. Through humor and candid introspection, Ed shares his experience on the March and how it brought into focus his lifelong search for love and meaning — even as intense, interpersonal dramas threatened to tear the March community apart.”
At the launch on December 2, I’ll talk about the book, read selections, and take questions. Hardcover and paperback books will be available for purchase and, sure, if you like, I’ll sign your copy. We’ll have beverages and light homemade snacks, because I don’t believe in parties without snacks. Thanks to Downtown Disciples for providing the space.
Thanks! – Ed