Jillian C. York

Jillian C. York is a writer and activist.

Month: November 2015

I am a migrant, but.

I am a migrant amongst migrants but

I don’t have to beg


or prove myself

I don’t have to

stand in the cold

waiting with hope

for someone to let me pass


I am a migrant but

I walked right in

blue passport in hand

while they welcomed me with nothing more than

a look and a reminder to pay my taxes


I am a migrant but

no one questions whether

I should be here or

can assimilate or

find a job or

become one of them


I am a migrant but

when I walk down the street

surrounded by my countrymen

heads covered from the cold

no one spits or says

we don’t belong here


I am a migrant but

when the borders tighten

I am not who politicians say

we are protecting ourselves from

I will not inspire policies

meant to keep the other people who look vaguely like me safe

and the ones who don’t, out


I am a migrant but

by total chance of birth

I will never have to argue

why I deserve to live.


On “Memories”

One nifty effect of Facebook’s “Memories” feature is that, because I’ve posted a lot about news and issues related to my work over the years, I can see what was happening in a given week over the past ten(!!) or so years that I’ve had a Facebook account. Of course, this is ultimately depressing, because things aren’t really getting better. Here’s a picture of this week over the past few years:

Other weeks have looked fairly similar. What I’m struck by most is how little changes, how the rhetoric of both sides of each issue remains about the same, or worsens. On so many indicators, the world is getting better, but from where I sit, it certainly doesn’t feel that way.

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