Advance praise from public figures José Andrés, Al Franken, Jonathan Blitzer of The New Yorker, and Russell Moore of Christianity Today. Find the moving stories of American immigrants and their journeys in Ali Noorani’s chronicle.
In an era when immigration on a global scale defines the fears and aspirations of Americans, Crossing Borders presents the complexities of migration through the stories of families fleeing violence and poverty, the government and nongovernmental organizations helping or hindering their progress, and the American communities receiving them. Ali Noorani, who has spent years building bridges between immigrants and their often conservative communities, takes readers on a journey to Honduras, Ciudad Juarez in Mexico, and Texas, meeting migrants and the organizations and people that help them on both sides of the border. He reports from the inside on why families make the heart-wrenching decision to leave home. Going beyond the polemical, partisan debate, Noorani offers sensitive insights and real solutions. Crossing Borders will appeal to a broad audience of concerned citizens across the political spectrum, faith communities, policymakers, and immigrants themselves.
Ali Noorani, President and CEO of the National Immigration Forum, an advocacy organization promoting the value of immigrants and immigration, is the author of There Goes the Neighborhood: How Communities Overcome Prejudice and Meet the Challenge of American Immigration.
Noorani is a sought-after commentator, and has been interviewed by the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Economist, the Associated Press, and by several other national, regional, and international media. He is also a frequent guest on a range of television and radio shows, including MSNBC, the Lou Dobbs Show, the Bill O'Reilly Show, the Sean Hannity Show, Washington Journal, PBS Newshour, Fusion, NPR (the Diane Rehm Show, On Point, and Marketplace), and is an op-ed contributor to CNN.com, FoxNewsLatino.com, among others. Noorani is a regular guest on local talk radio shows across the country. He resides in Washington, DC.
Chapter 1: Carlos
Chapter 2: Tough, Strong, Mean
Chapter 3: Their Dignity is Robbed
Chapter 4: Caught in the Middle
Chapter 5: Fear
Chapter 6: From Within
Chapter 7: The Path to Unity
Chapter 8: Confidence
In their efforts to flee violence, natural disaster, or to seek a warm meal to feed their family, I have seen how immigrants and refugees are pinned against borders around the world. Wrapped around stories of those who would scale any obstacle in search of a better future for their children, Ali Noorani unpacks the ugliness of the politics and policies of immigration, charting a path forward that serves the national interest and helps all of us become our better selves.
A new book on immigration appeals to Americans’ hearts. A book by Ali Noorani, president & CEO of the National Immigration Forum, uses stories, history and the unsettling present to convince Americans that enacting humane immigration reform would be in line with the best traditions of America.... Nearly everything Ali Noorani writes about in his new book describes a place he visited personally, giving the book a journalistic sensibility and the benefit of a longtime observer’s touch.
The anecdotes that may most pique the interest of Harvard Business Review readers appear in Crossing Borders by Ali Noorani. One details how the Idaho dairy industry, originally built by Dutch settlers, thrives today thanks to Latino workers and the yogurt company Chobani, founded by the Turkish-born Hamdi Ulukaya. As a result, dairy owners are partnering with the company and local labor groups to lobby for laws that will make it easier to gain legal entry to and citizenship in the United States. Noorani shows how a similar scenario played out in an Iowa pork-processing town and how immigrant medical and food workers carried the country and its businesses through the worst of the pandemic.
Perhaps no issue at this moment is so filled with passion and rage as immigration. I do not know of anyone alive more knowledgeable on the legal, moral, and cultural aspects of immigration than Ali Noorani. This book, a combination of memoir and analysis, frames how we arrived at this crisis, and how to go forward. The book never exchanges utopianism for realism nor does it ever exchange despair for hope. In this way, this book can help anyone to think through how to build coalitions, how to seek to persuade skeptics, and how to press on against daunting odds.
Immigration policy is complex and endlessly challenging on a good day. And the politics, always dicey, have become toxic. Fortunately for all of us, Ali Noorani has dedicated his life to bringing humanity and thoughtfulness to the issue. His moral clarity and searching intelligence are more important than ever. His is truly a voice we should all heed.
CROSSING BORDERS chronicles how politicians and pundits manipulate our fear of outsiders, encircling us in fear and blame, like coils of razor wire. But every so often, as Ali Noorani captures in vivid detail, there are mayors, police chiefs and business people who decline to be used in this way. Indispensable reading for anyone who wants to understand how Americans can reclaim our own basic decency.
In an era of symbolic politics, when borders have become the organizing principle for how we legitimize disputes, resolve our own questions of identity and even contrive a sense of meaning and purpose, Ali Noorani steps into their manifestation in the U.S. immigration debate and powerfully disentangles their hold. Crossing Borders is a moving portrait of a country confused and contorted by caricature, even as it invites fresh courage for all who feel and are displaced.
Ali Noorani knows immigration. Crossing Borders is authoritative and objective—passionate, yet surprisingly hopeful. This book is crucial to our understanding of American immigration and therefore of America.
Ali Noorani gently helps those of us who have been too blind or too busy to see what we have missed in our responsibilities to offer all people dignity, love our neighbor, and care for the stranger. He helps us see that the stories we've been told by our "community" about immigrants are grounded in fear, not fact; hate, not love. And he gives us hope through examples of unlikely alliances among by small groups of people with the courage to step outside of their community's norms and offer dignity to fellow human beings.
10/4/21, Medium: Ali Noorani wrote an article about the border crisis in Del Rio.
10/12/21, Boston Public Radio, WGBH: The author discusses immigration and his new book is mentioned.
12/21/21, Boston Public Radio: Noorani spoke about immigration policy on this radio show, and the book is featured in his byline.
12/13/21, TEDx Talk: Ali Noorani gave a talk at the TEDx conference in Boston.
1/10/22, Baptist News Global Online: Ali Noorani’s career and contributions are highlighted in this article, and the book is mentioned.
2/11/22, Pan Con Podcast: Ali Noorani discussed the upcoming release of the book.
3/2/22, CBS News: Ali Noorani was interviewed by Elaine Quijano to discuss President Biden’s call for immigration reform during his State of the Union speech.
3/3/22, Zócalo Public Square: Ali Noorani wrote an op-ed about needing to change the narrative to address questions of security.
3/9/22, WGBH/Boston Public Radio: Ali talked about the book and the Ukrainian refugee crisis.
3/11/22, The Bulwark: Ali wrote an op-ed addressing steps the Biden administration needs to take to reclaim America’s role as a world leader in accepting refugees.
3/20/22, WMBR (Cambridge, MA)/Terms and Conditions: Ali was interviewed by Dave Goodman about the book.
3/24/22, Zócalo Public Square: Ali Noorani was interviewed.
3/25/22, Writer’s Voice with Francesca Rheannon Podcast: Ali talked about the book and the broken immigration systems in the US and Europe.
3/24/22, Zócalo Public Square: Ali Noorani discussed immigration issues with The New York Times National Immigration Correspondent, Miriam Jordan.
3/23/22, KTLA (Los Angeles): Frank Buckley spoke with Ali about the book and the complexities of migration in the United States.
3/27/22, MSNBC American Voices: Ali Noorani joined Alicia Menendez to talk about the book and how the war in Ukraine is expanding the conversation about refugee resettlement.
3/31/22, The Takeaway on WNYC/PRX: Ali was interviewed about the book by Melissa Harris-Perry.
3/31/22, CBN Christian Broadcasting Network: This coverage of the Biden administration's border rule changes included Ali Noorani’s input on why the changes were necessary.
4/25/22, WGTD Public Radio Wisconsin: Ali Noorani discussed the book in this segment.
5/2/22, America Trends Podcast: Ali Noorani spoke with host Larry Rifkin about the book and his approach to immigration reform.
6/14/22, Boise State Public Radio: Ali Noorani discussed the book with Rachel Cohen.
7/21/22, Deseret News: The excerpt from the book is published.
7/22/22/, Talkin‘ Politics & Religion Without Killin‘ Each Other Podcast: Ali Noorani discussed the book with Corey Nathan.
8/11/22, Construction Citizen: Noorani talked about his book on the Center for Houston's Future panel.