things that matter

Lin-Manuel Miranda Reacts To Protesters Using His Lyrics On Signs

After President Donald Trump signed the now infamous executive order that indefinitely bars Syrian refugees and temporarily bans all other refugees as well as citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States, the protests were on. At every protest, there are signs voicing disgust and outrage. You’ll also see lyrics from the mega-hit hip-hop musical “Hamilton” by Lin-Manuel Miranda being quoted on placards all over the world.

Seeing the lyrics that he wrote being used to fight back gives him all the feels because Miranda believes the ban is “deeply un-American” and goes “against the fundamental freedom of religion in our constitution.” He told HuffPo in a phone interview:

There was an incredible protest sign that read ‘History Has Its Eyes On You’ and it had Carrie Fisher as Leia’s eyes over it, and I was so moved by the moment. When you’re making something, you don’t control what happens [in response]. You can only control the thing you make. So, to see it ripple back in that way, it’s very moving and very humbling.

And no doubt the Tony Award winning musical about the life and times of Alexander Hamilton is replete with quotes that remain relevant in today’s political chaos.

There’s the truth about how immigrants contribute to this nation’s growth.

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There’s criticism about how women and their rights are dismissed.

Credit: emmieinthecity/Twitter

And isn’t this just the perfect burn for someone who can’t seem to speak in complete sentences?

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Then there’s the perfect call to action: Rise up!

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As for those who stand and watch injustice without taking a stand: tsk, tsk, tsk.

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Putting it all in perspective.

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The next time you are headed to a protest and contemplating what to put on your blank sign, feel free to borrow Miranda’s lyrics – they get the job done.

Click here to find out more about how Miranda feels about his lyrics being used to protest the immigration ban.

Mexican-Born U.S. Soldier Who Served Two Tours In Afghanistan Could Be Deported After Drug Conviction

things that matter

Mexican-Born U.S. Soldier Who Served Two Tours In Afghanistan Could Be Deported After Drug Conviction

CBS 2 Chicago

When Miguel Perez Jr. enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2001, he did so because wanted to give back to the country that had given his family so much. A Mexican-born permanent U.S. resident, Perez Jr. served two tours in Afghanistan: one in 2002 and another in 2003. Now, Perez Jr., who has lived in the U.S. since he was eight years old, faces deportation to Mexico.

Why? In 2010, Perez Jr. was arrested for giving an undercover police officer more than two pounds of cocaine. After being convicted on drug charges, he served 7 years in prison. Upon his release, the 38-year-old Perez Jr. learned that his conviction made him subject to deportation. Perez thought his military service granted him automatic citizenship because in 2002, then-president George W. Bush signed an executive order that expedited citizenship for non-citizens who were serving in the military. However, Bush’s executive order did not grant automatic citizenship, and it required non-citizens to apply for citizenship in order to benefit from the expedited process. Perez did not apply, which resulted in his permanent resident status remaining unchanged.

Perez Jr. is currently fighting to remain in the U.S. His parents have spoken out in defense of their son, insisting that Perez Jr.’s struggles with PTSD led him to the drugs that resulted in his criminal activity. His lawyer, Chris Bergin, is arguing that Perez Jr. should be granted asylum to remain in the U.S. According to ABC 7 Chicago, Bergin says his client would become a target for cartels in Mexico: “Many people with military experience like he has are recruited at gunpoint to work for the cartels and if they refuse they are killed.”

According to the Chicago Tribune, Perez Jr. told the immigration judge handling his case that deportation would be like being sent back to jail: “This is the same as somebody fighting a life sentence. The outcome of this determines the rest of my life spent away from my society, my way of life, my loved ones and not to mention, my country.”

Here is a brief news report about Perez Jr. by Chicago’s CBS 2 News:

Credit: CBS 2 Chicago / YouTube

Perez Jr.’s hearing concluded earlier this week. He is currently awaiting the immigration judge’s ruling.

READ: Defiant California Set To Vote On Act That Would Make Entire State A Sanctuary For Undocumented Immigrants

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