I am a Fresno native living in New Orleans, and on reading Mayor Lee Brand’s statement that Fresno will not be a “sanctuary city,” I realized why I no longer live in Fresno.
On Dec. 26, I co-produced a multi-cultural event in my hometown called Fiesta Americana, featuring fellow alumni from Roosevelt School of the Arts. The event proved to me that Fresno, like America, is home to many upstanding and talented migrants. Many of them have welcomed me into their home. Growing up in Fresno forced me to learn to appreciate their friendship instead of fear our differences.
I invite Mayor Brand to attend next year’s Fiesta Americana to see what I see. The word “sanctuary” has positive connotations in my view, and your claim that the city will lose funding has given me very negative connotations for your new office.
Fresno, like America, was built on the backs of migrants. By threatening “us vs. them” in a city built on migrant farm labor, the mayor has reinforced why talented young people like my friends and me leave our hometown.
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New Orleans has a diverse culture that everyone seems to appreciate and love. Why should Fresno be any different?
David Hull, New Orleans