Auburn Senior Fellows Petition The White House To “Welcome The Stranger” With Haiti Policy
September 28, 2021
Dear President Biden, Vice President Harris, Secretary Mayorkas, Secretary Blinken:
We are American faith leaders from six different faith traditions, including yours. We see our nation continuing to spectacularly fail in welcoming the stranger, something clearly and repeatedly called for by every one of our faiths, including yours. Once again human beings again suffer dehumanizing and dangerous abuse on our border and in holding facilities.
The desperation we witnessed among Haitians is not only a consequence of the hardship they are enduring from natural disasters, but also the result of centuries of racist policies after they fought for and won their liberation from their enslavers. The U.S. relationship with Haiti has been imperious and continues to contradict our deepest faithful commitment to the wellbeing of all people, especially those targeted by racism, economic exploitation, environmental disaster, and war.
We must chart a different future and that is the moral call. The immediate path forward is clear:
- Title 42 has no place or purpose in your administration and must end.
- TPS designation for Haitians needs to be expanded.
- CBP agents must not just be held accountable for their behavior at all borders; a culture shift is needed at the agency.
The world looks to our nation anew for leadership and compassion. We have been void of both for too long. With urgency, we look to you to lead a new way. The recent pictures speak a thousand words and your nation, and the world, are watching.
The Auburn Senior Fellows are a multifaith cohort of inﬂuential faith-inspired leaders committed to moral courage in the public square, and include:
Sr. Simone Campbell, SSS, author
Brian McLaren, author
Rabbi Sharon Brous, Senior Rabbi, IKAR
Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III, Senior Pastor, Trinity United Church of Christ
Rev Jennifer Butler, CEO, Faith in Public Life
The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson, Bishop, The Episcopal Church
Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis, Senior Minister-in-Charge, Middle Collegiate Church
Rev. Michael-Ray Mathews, Faith in Action
Rev. Dr. Yvette A. Flunder, Presiding Bishop, The Fellowship of Afﬁrming Ministries Rev. Traci D. Blackmon, Associate General Minister, United Church of Christ Stosh Cotler, CEO, Bend the Arc: Jewish Action
Wajahat Ali, The Daily Beast columnist
Valarie Kaur, founder, Revolutionary Love Project
Rev. Dr. Peter Goodwin Heltzel, Author/Activist
Rabbi Jill Jacobs, Executive Director, T’ruah
Lisa Sharon Harper, President and Founder of Freedom Road
on behalf of Auburn Seminary:
Rev. Dr. Katharine R. Henderson, President
Dr. Keisha E. McKenzie, Senior Vice President of Programs