NEW YORK: There will be celebrities galore at Indian American actor, author comedian and social activist Aasif Mandvi’s all-star “deportation jamboree” on April 26 in New York City to support the efforts of American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the International Rescue Committee (IRC) to uphold the rights of immigrants and refugees.
The live event will feature, among others, Lewis Black, Wanda Sykes, Anoushka Shankar, Connie Britton, Questlove, Mandy Patinkin, Heems, Grace Weber, Hasan Minaj, Roy Wood, Jr., Sasheer Zamata, Maysoon Zayid, Seth Herzog, Aparna Nancherla and Rajiv Satyal, according to Mandvi.
“As an immigrant and the child of immigrants I want to raise as much money and as many voices as we possibly can to support the work of the ACLU and the IRC as they fight for the rights of immigrants and refugees,” Mandavi wrote on Instagram.
The event will be held at City Winery in Manhattan at 7 p.m.
In a video posted on Vimeo, Mandvi says: “I’m an immigrant, you know, like 41 million other immigrants in this country. But luckily my family didn’t have to come here escaping war or famine. But many immigrants come here as refugees… like that doofus Albert Einstein, or Frederick Douglas.
“[Constitutional] rights are under attack for millions and millions of people. Does that make you depressed? Does that make you do something? Well, me, too. And that’s why I am throwing Aasif Mandvi’s Deportation Jamboree.”
Since Donald Trump’s election win, Mandvi has been especially open with his criticisms and has used his celebrity platform to raise awareness for causes of resistance, reported the Huffington Post.
“As an immigrant myself, it’s a no-brainer for me to get involved with this kind of stuff,” Mandvi said. “I think we’re all sort of sitting around feeling like we want to do something.”
Last month, he had organized the celebrity-filled livestream “Stand for Rights” to benefit the American Civil Liberties Union. The “Stand for Rights” was held in partnership with The Huffington Post and Funny or Die.
“The ACLU is doing the thankless job of defending the rights of people that have been deported, of immigrants,” Mandvi said. “And this work is so necessary right now and it’s so important. These people are sort of on the front lines of fighting for the victims of these deportations and Trump’s policy around immigrants.”
For his event at City Winery, Mandvi said that he extended an invitation to the president.
“We actually invited him. He’s not going to come. But I would love him to. I’ll tweet out at him.”
After the election, Mandvi wrote a New York Times op-ed expressing his frustration that the president was attacking groups such as artists and journalists rather than hate groups.
“My op-ed that I wrote for The New York Times is really about how the anger and outrage that he seems to have for ‘SNL’ and the cast of ‘Hamilton’ and, you know, a ninth grader somewhere that tweets something about him or whatever,” Mandvi said. “That outrage could be directed at actual Nazis and hate groups. I was sort of making the point that there doesn’t seem to be the equal level of outrage against actual people who are perpetrating prejudice or racism and hatred.”