We refuse to accept a future where the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are left to become empty symbols. We know that the vast majority of Jewish immigrants who came to this country would be rejected under today’s stricter immigration laws.
Guided by the Jewish value of “welcoming the stranger” and by the long history of our people as immigrants, refugees and outsiders, Bend the Arc advocates for the rights and dignity of immigrants. We resist cynical efforts to scapegoat immigrants. We recognize the white supremacy underlying policies of inhumane deportation and harsh restriction.
Today, we ally with contemporary immigrant communities to protect Dreamers, and we continue to support comprehensive immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship for undocumented peoples that respects the dignity and rights of all.
Because we — as a multi-racial Jewish community — believe deeply in the inherent divinity, dignity, and humanity of every person, we believe it’s a moral imperative for us to work to end the centuries-old systemic racism of this country.
We join as allies in critical policy fights around criminal justice reform and police violence that represent life-or-death issues for black communities. We support personal and community transformation by investing in the leadership of Jews of color. And we are unafraid to confront the rise in political support for white nationalist principles, which often intertwine antisemitism and white supremacy.
We see the historic levels of wealth inequality in our country as an urgent and unsustainable moral crisis with corrosive impacts on our democracy. And we recognize the many ways that issues of poverty and opportunity intersect with racial justice, immigration, and civil rights.
Drawing on the long and proud Jewish history of fighting for economic justice, Bend the Arc works to create an economy with livable wages, paid family leave, and other basic economic rights for all of us in the 21st century.
We advocate for a country where the wealthiest pay their fair share, where everyone has a path to a decent life with dignity, and where all are cared for by a robust social safety net.
We know what it means for a government to curtail the rights of some citizens based on prejudice. In the words of Rabbi Joachim Prinz at the March on Washington in 1963, in the face of injustice “bigotry and hatred are not the most urgent problem — the most urgent, the most disgraceful, the most shameful and the most tragic problem is silence.”
It’s what motivated the Jewish allies of the mid-century Civil Rights Movement, and it’s what continues to motivate us today to join with allies new and old in the modern-day fight for civil rights and inclusion.
We believe fiercely in the voting rights of all citizens. We believe fiercely in protecting marriage equality and expanding workplace protections. And we believe fiercely that civil rights are not contingent on race, faith, gender, sexual orientation, or class — that until all of us can be free, none of us can be free.
As a people who have faced persecution for our religious beliefs before, and still face hatred today, we ally ourselves with all religious minorities in this country who are working to secure lives free from fear, government persecution, or infringement on their right to worship as they choose.