Onstage to introduce U2 at Sunday night’s Grammy Awards, Cuba-born singer-songwriter Camila Cabello passed on an ordinary introduction to express support for “Dreamers,” undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children who have largely known no other country. More than 800,000 of them face deportation if the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy isn’t renewed in 6 weeks when congress resumes debate on a 2018 government budget.
Below you’ll find the full text of Cabello’s speech, concluding with the text of the poem engraved on the Statue of Liberty. You can view the speech embedded at the bottom of the post.
Tonight, in this room full of music’s dreamers, we remember that this country was built by dreamers, for dreamers, chasing the american dream. I’m here on this stage tonight because just like the dreamers my parents brought me to this country with nothing in their pockets but hope. They showed me what it means to work twice as hard and never give up, and honestly no part of my journey is any different from theirs.
I’m a proud Cuban-Mexican immigrant, born in eastern Havana, standing in front of you on the Grammy stage in New York City, and all I know is, just like dreams, these kids can’t be forgotten and are worth fighting for.
Tonight, it is my great honor to introduce one of the greatest bands in music history, U2. This band from Ireland first rocked the Grammy boat when they won their first four awards 30 years ago for “The Joshua Tree,” an album that explored their own powerful connection with the American Dream. 46 Grammy nominations and 22 awards later, they extend their stunning Grammy legacy tonight by celebrating New York City and the promise that has drawn generations of immigrants here from around the world.
Here they are performing in front of a beautiful lady who inspired these timeless words by Emma Lazarus. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free. The wretched refuse of your teaming shore, the homeless, tempest-tost, to me.”
From there, the Grammys cut to U2’s performance of “Get Out of Your Own Way,” which took place on an outdoor stage with the Statue of Liberty in the background.
Just before delivering her speech, Cabello performed as a background singer as part of Kesha’s performance of her immensely emotional anthem “Praying,” alongside Cyndi Lauper, Andra Day, Julia Michaels and Bebe Rexha.