Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanksgiving- A Troubled History


By far the “the king of the holidays” is Thanksgiving. The narrative has been burned into our consciousness to the point that few Americans question the facts because no one wants to lay the proverbial intellectual pedo.
Almost everyone is grateful for the day off. Merchants love Thanksgiving. It is the perfect opening act for Christmas.
The ritual of sitting down with the family to eat cheap turkey, chucked full of hormones, has been immortalized by Norman Rockwell. It is a day when you eat cheap turkeys and hams and everyone can pig out.
Not much thought is given to the truth of the narrative. Kids just want their four day relief from school, and parents are smug in the belief that the colonist and the Indians lived in peace. The only ones that care about changing the narrative are Native Americans who call it a National Day of Mourning.
I call Thanksgiving “El Día de los Pendejos” (The Day of the Fools). I tell my students to enjoy making graveyards out of their stomachs that they fill with the flesh of turkeys that have been held prisoners in small dirty cages.
Why do I call the Indians fools? Because they should have let the Pilgrims starve.
Few people know that the tradition of Thanksgiving was invented during the Civil war by President Abraham Lincoln in October 1863 when he proclaimed Thanksgiving a national holiday. Thereafter, the myth of the Pilgrims and the Indians was constructed.
The story is known by almost every American. For twelve years, from K-12, they learn the story of that in the early autumn of 1621 fifty-three surviving Pilgrims celebrated a successful harvest. The natives joined the celebration and instead of attacking the Pilgrims they made peace.
The Indians were thanked: their land was stolen from them, they were massacred, and many lived out their lives in slavery. The consequence is that less than one percent of Americans have Native American blood, contrasted to 90 percent of Mexican Americans with indigenous blood.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Important Immigration Information

Thanks to the President's  announcement that he will take administrative action on immigration, I have real hope. The president's action will provide millions of working people and families with the opportunity to come out of the shadows and into the light of our economy and society without fear.
Those who can benefit from this administrative action should use - a new resource offering informational tools and interactive opportunities to become full participants of our nation's democracy.

Visit iAmerica and share it with a friend now (There's no application process that exists yet, but once there is, this will be a trusted resource to receive accurate information).

Friday, November 21, 2014

LA Unified begins requiring Ethnic Studies

                                                                      Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed.  You cannot un-
Cesar Chavez & Duane Campbell, 1972.
educate the person who has learned to read.  You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore.  Cesar Chávez.  November 9, 1984.

By 2019, every Los Angeles Unified School District high school student will need to take a class in ethnic studies to graduate.
The LAUSD board voted 6-1 on Tuesday to require the courses and increase ethnic studies classes as hundreds of students rallied outside the district's downtown headquarters, shouting "We won!"
District officials estimate the new requirement will cost $3.9 million to roll out to all 140,00 high school students, but the board has yet to be presented with the program's budget.
Ethnic studies, the interdisciplinary study of race, ethnicity and culture, has long been offered in colleges, but has not been widely available in high schools. 
Several ethnic studies courses, such as Chicano Literature or African American History, are already offered at 19 district schools, but fewer than half count towards California university entrance, according to a board report.
Supporters say exposing students to the stories and cultures of other ethnicities promotes racial tolerance and teaches a more accurate version of the country's history.
“There is a saying: 'The real story of the hunter will be told when the lion and the buffalo get to write,'" said LAUSD board member George McKenna, co-sponsor of the resolution who represents South Los Angeles. 
Angie Escalante, a senior at Orthopaedic Hospital Medical Magnet High School near USC, complained her history and literature courses focus too heavily on white people.
"It says that we don't exist and when we do, it's for something bad," Escalante said. She heard about the initiative to require ethnic studies and encouraged her classmates to attend the board meeting – a first for many.
"When I heard we would have the chance to change history, I was like, 'That would be awesome,'" said Brenda Perez, her voice cracking from four hours of shouting.
"We think this builds a young person's sense of self and empathy in others,"said Manuel Criollo with Community Rights Campaign, an advocacy group supporting the ethnic studies policy. The group shuttled in dozens of Little Caesars' pizzas to feed the crowds of teenagers.

Why California Students Need Ethnic Studies
By Duane Campbell
Children and young adults need to see themselves in the curriculum.  Students, particularly students of color, have low levels of attachment to California and U.S.  civil society  messages in significant part because the government institution they encounter the most- the schools- ignore the students own history, cultures and experiences.

Immigration Move : a first step

Immigration Move a "Stopgap Measure"
David Bacon
November 20, 2014
Institute for Public Accuracy (IPA)
[President Obama] said today: "The administration's decision to step away, at least partially, from the policy of mass deportations that have hurt millions of people over the last six years is a good step, but it is only a step. It leaves millions more people subject to deportation and vastly increased enforcement.The administration is imposing increasing enforcement and labor programs as a price for deportation relief. The U.S. already spends more money on immigration enforcement than all other federal law enforcement programs combined. Giving Silicon Valley more work visas and tying labor programs to deportation relief is a step towards lower wages, undermining the rights of all workers. At the same time, the administration has announced support for more free trade deals, like the Trans Pacific Partnership, which will lead to more displacement and migration, while eliminating jobs here at home. Instead of a stopgap measure, we must change U.S. immigration law and trade policy to deal with the basic causes of migration, and to guarantee the human, civil and labor rights of migrants and all working people."
[David Bacon is author of several books on immigration, including The Right to Stay Home and Illegal People: How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants. He is a labor and immigrant rights activist, and part of the Dignity Campaign.]
The Dignity Campaign - Real Immigration Reform
United We Dream
United We Dream is the largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation. Our powerful nonpartisan network is made up of over 100,000 immigrant youth and allies and 55 affiliate organizations in 26 states. We organize and advocate for the dignity and fair treatment of immigrant youth and families, regardless of immigration status.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Mexico, A Toxic Mix of Crime, Corruption and US Collusion

The recent kidnapping and likely murder of 43 Mexican students from a teachers college in Ayotzinapa Guerrero has inflamed the anger of people both within Mexico and abroad. In this incident, local politicians ordered the police to attack and shoot protesting students and then handed 43 of these young people over to an allied criminal gang who kidnapped them. The missing students have yet to be found and are presumed to be dead while their remains and any evidence of this horrendous crime have most likely been destroyed and covered up. Other such deadly attacks upon small farmers and their organizations by politicians allied with wealthy landowners and criminals have also been commonplace in the state of Guerrero which is governed by the supposedly ‘leftist’ PRD party. This violent and grisly act that was committed by these oligarchs  against these young people was intended to intimidate and silence the voices of protesting students and this incident is symbolic of what is left of a shattered Mexican democracy. The growing financial and political complicity between government officials and criminal gangs and their blatant use of terror and violence is aimed at stifling the rights of the Mexican People to enact social change through democratic means. Other victims of this violent trend within Mexico have included numerous journalists, politicians seeking reform, trade unionists and human rights advocates. This deadly attack and kidnapping of these students is a clear example to the world of the blatant lack of democracy and rule of law that now exists within Mexico. Such growing lawlessness on the part of government officials and gang cartel members combined with a consistent growth in financial inequality and unemployment throughout the country has also exerted a downward push on people’s standard of living and on the economic well-being of their families.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Vigil por Ayotzinapa Wednesday.

Please join us in solidarity to PEACEFULLY DEMONSTRATE & hold a CANDLELIGHT VIGIL in front of an event being HOSTED BY THE MEXICAN CONSULATE at the CREST THEATER. LET YOUR VOICES BE HEARD!! On WEDNESDAY, our elders will continue to address the lack of information, investigation, evidence & accountability given towards the lives that have been stolen as well as those who continue to be missing from Guerrero's Ayotzinapa training college. WE NEED ALL PERSONS & STUDENTS to join us for a demo & candlelight vigil..

(WEAR BLACK With Red Paños on your face OR SHIRTS with the #43...BRING CANDLES & POSTERS)

As students, activists, & human beings..WE ALL have an obligation to join one another to speak out & demand answers to where exactly these men are. This could be your missing father, brother, son, uncle, cousin, or friend.

We will meeting in front of the CREST THEATER where the event will be held: 1013 K Street Sacramento, CA 95814 PLEASE BE There at 4:30pm =)