Lights for Liberty

Lights for Liberty
Elisha Mendoza, 16, and Doane Castelán,

By Peter Maiden

On July 12, Fresno was one of more than 700 cities around the world holding a “Lights for Liberty” vigil to protest the situation of immigrants. Many, including infants, toddlers and young children, are being detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, as well as Customs and Border Protection, and held in camps with terrible conditions.

The Fresno action was organized by three veteran protest groups: Comité Resistencia, the Fresno Women’s March and the group that protests at Rep. Devin Nunes’ office in Clovis.

Gloria Hernandez of Comité Resistencia said she spent three evenings making signs, with a lot of allies helping out. 

“I was surprised at the response. I was pretty happy about it,” she said.

There were around 400 people protesting, occupying all four corners of the intersection at Blackstone and Nees avenues, by the River Park Shopping Center.

Hernandez said that she has worked on the Oct. 22 police brutality protests over the years, and they would have at most 90 people attend. The camps evidence a new level of brutality, and they are creating a new kind of response. “To me,” Hernandez said, “to see this happening worldwide is just amazing.”


Peter Maiden is a staff photographer for the Community Alliance newspaper. He studied media at UC Berkeley. Contact him at


  • Community Alliance

    The Community Alliance is a monthly newspaper that has been published in Fresno, California, since 1996. The purpose of the newspaper is to help build a progressive movement for social and economic justice.

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