City Lights, Beacon Press, and Refugee Immigrant Transitions present
Bill Ong Hing in conversation with Jane Pak
An evening of conversation exploring the new book
Humanizing Immigration: How to Transform Our Racist and Unjust System
by Bill Ong Hing
published by Beacon Press
Humanizing Immigration is the first book to argue that immigrant and refugee rights are part of the fight for racial justice; and offers a humanitarian approach to reform and abolition.
Representing non-citizens caught up in what he calls the immigration and enforcement “meat grinder”, Bill Ong Hing witnessed their trauma, arriving at this conclusion: migrants should have the right to free movement across borders—and the right to live free of harassment over immigration status.
He cites examples of racial injustices endemic in immigration law and enforcement, from historic courtroom cases to the recent treatment of Haitian migrants. Hing includes histories of Mexican immigration, African migration and the Asian exclusion era, all of which reveal ICE abuse and a history of often forgotten racist immigration laws.
While ultimately arguing for the abolishment of ICE, Hing advocates for change now. With 50 years of law practice and litigation, Hing has represented non-citizens—from gang members to asylum seekers fleeing violence, and from individuals in ICE detention to families at the US southern border seeking refuge.
Hing maps out major reforms to the immigration system, making an urgent call for the adoption of a radical, racial justice lens. Readers will understand the root causes of migration and our country’s culpability in contributing to those causes.
Bill Ong Hing is Professor of Law and Migration Studies at the University of San Francisco, and Professor of Law and Asian American Studies Emeritus, at UC Davis. Previously on the law faculties at Stanford University and Golden Gate University, he founded the Immigrant Legal Resource Center in San Francisco and directs their Immigration & Deportation Defense Clinic. Professor Hing teaches Immigration Law & Policy, Migration Studies, Rebellious Lawyering, and Evidence, is the author of 6 books, and was co-counsel in the US Supreme Court asylum precedent-setting case INS v. Cardoza-Fonseca (1987).
Jane Pak is Co-Executive Director at Refugee and Immigrant Transitions and Adjunct Professor in the Master in Migration Studies program at the University of San Francisco (USF). Her scholarship and praxis are informed by Critical Refugee Studies; liberatory education; and transnational solidarity. Jane is most energized when engaging with diverse communities and knowledges in collective contexts. Her background is in strategy, development, and research in education and refugee contexts. She has worked in community, nonprofit, government, and business sectors. Jane’s work for justice is motivated by a multi-generational family history of forced migration, resistance, and service.
To learn more about Refugee Immigrant Transitions visit their website: https://www.reftrans.org
This event is made possible by support from the City Lights Foundation. To learn more visit: https://citylights.com/foundation/