Friday, May 27, 2016


The Reality Check: THE REVOLT OF THE CHAPULINES: THE REVOLT OF THE CHAPULINES By David Bacon McFarland, CA In These Times - 5/26/16

Important story and great photos.  Indigenous farmworkers go on strike in California and promptly join the United Farmworkers Union. 

Latino Rebels | Congressman Vendepatria of Idaho

Latino Rebels | Congressman Vendepatria of Idaho

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Farm Worker Overtime Pay

“It’s very tiring to work 10 hours, then have to work another two to three hours extra. The body doesn’t handle it. If we could get a law for eight hours and after that the hours would be paid extra for the field work in California, it would be a great relief to all the farm workers.”
--Salvador Rodriguez
AB 2757 “The Phase-In Overtime for Agricultural Workers Act of 2016” to ensure farm workers get overtime pay after eight hours -- the same as almost every other California worker is about to be voted on in the Appropriations Committee. Please send your email today to the committee chair and bill author Lorena Gonzalez. Tell her we’re behind her all the way and ask her to do all she can to make sure the bill passes and moves on to the full Assembly floor.

Farm workers toil for low wages hour after hour, often in extreme temperatures and under dangerous conditions. California is the biggest agricultural employer in the nation and one of a handful of states with any overtime protection at all for farm workers. However, these laborers only receive extra pay after working a grueling 10 hours a day.

AB 2757 is a vital bill that would gradually move toward paying California farm workers overtime if they labor more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week by the year 2020. We’ve had two previous efforts to enact an eight-hour overtime law in California. We can’t have more delays. Farm workers are not beasts of burden. They work hard and deserve the same overtime other workers get.

Please help Salvador and thousands of farm worker who labor in California’s fields by sending your email to Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez today.

After you take action, please ask your friends and family to take action too. You can send them an e-mail, post this campaign on your Facebook and/or Twitter page by clicking here.

Friday, May 20, 2016

We Win an Important Victory for Chicano Students !!!

Cesar Chavez, Duane Campbell
Sacramento, 1972.

On Thursday  May 19, the  Quality Instructional Materials  committee of the California Board of Education made  a decision to include the history of Cesar Chavez, Dolores Huerta,  Larry Itliong, and numerous other Chicano leaders and labor leaders  in the textbooks for all children in California. 

Because of California’s large size and market, what goes into California textbooks also goes into textbooks around the nation.

Many have participated in this effort.  In the last decade It has been a primary effort working with Chicano scholars through the Mexican American Digital History project.   We achieved the change by overcoming the inertia and by working on the California commissions and specific legislators. 

Monday, May 16, 2016

May Revise Proposal Contributes to the Shortage of Latino Teachers

Kevin McCarty,
California State Assembly.
I watched today the hearings on the Education Finance subcommittee of the Budget Committee and the testimony on the May Revise in particular relationship to the recognized approaching shortage of teachers. 
It is good that the Governor’s proposal and the Dept. of Education response recognize this rapidly approaching problem, however their responses are inadequate. 
Outreach strategies and recruitment web sites are fine, but the proposals fail because  they fail to recognize that future teachers from the currently under represented Latino and Asian communities will not be there.  During the Great Recession the teacher preparation programs focusing on resolving the problem of under representation were cut back and eliminated. 
I will use Sacramento as an example, although the problem is state-wide. 
In Sacramento the Funds from the  Local Control and  Accountability Plan  were to be targeted to low income schools.  This increased funding has led to a dramatic need for new teachers.  Sacramento City Unified plans to hire 100 new teachers, and many other local urban districts will do the same.  This faculty growth will continue for from 3-5 years.
A more complete story of the Sacramento experience is here.

Significantly  credentialed teachers from the Latino community and several Asian communities will not be available to hire because the Sac State pipeline for minority teachers  has been broken.  A new generation of mostly Anglo teachers will be hired which will continue the past failure to integrate the teaching profession in this region. Ending the pipeline will shape the nature of the local teaching profession for decades. Latino students make up 37 % of Sac City Unified students, Asians 17.4 %, African Americans 17.7 %, and White students 18.8 %. Latino families now make up over 37 % of California residents and Latino descent children now make up over 50% of public school students.
What should you do?

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Defend Immigrant Children

Bernie Sanders for President

My father Eli immigrated to America from Poland in 1921 after World War I at the age of 17. He was not a refugee fleeing war, although much of his family later became victims of the Holocaust. He came to America looking to make a better life. He never made a lot of money, but it didn’t matter because he was able to start a family and send his two sons to college. That meant the world to him and he loved this country.
While my father came here as an immigrant seeking economic opportunity, many immigrants arrived in our country fleeing war, oppression and violence. This is true today for thousands of women and unaccompanied children who came to our country in the last several years fleeing horrific violence in Latin America.
This week the media reported something that I find not just wrong, but inhumane: President Obama is currently planning "a month-long series of raids in May and June to deport hundreds of Central American mothers and children" who came to our country fleeing that same violence.
Sending women and children back into harm's way after they already fled horrendous violence in Central America is painful and inhumane, and must be stopped.
Donald Trump has of course called for building a "Great Wall" along the border with Mexico. Hillary Clinton previously said that these same children who fled violence in Latin America "should be sent back" in order to "send a clear message."
I happen to see things differently. I don't believe that the United States should turn away from our historic role as a haven for the oppressed.
I recently met a young Salvadoran woman who came to the United States on her own at the age of 15 to flee gangs trying to recruit her. I’ve also spoken with many children who have told me with tears streaming down their faces that they live in daily fear that their parents will be taken away.
The United States of America must continue to be a refuge for the poor, the tired, the oppressed, and certainly for women and children fleeing horrific violence.
I urge President Obama to use his executive authority to protect families by extending Temporary Protective Status for those who fled from Central America, and I ask you to join me.
In solidarity,
Bernie Sanders

Monday, May 09, 2016

California to Rewrite History Textbooks - Include Mexican Americans

Cesar Chavez and Duane Campbell
California to adopt a new guide to Mexican American (Chicano) history, (and everyone else)

"Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed.  You can not un-educate the person who has learned to read.. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore.
Cesar Chávez. November 9, 1984.

by Duane Campbell
History will change in May of 2016 for the students of California, and in subsequent years students throughout the nation.

We have a unique opportunity to change the history books in California  K-12 to include Chicano/Mexican American history.
Mexican American/ Chicano history is currently substantially absent from public school textbooks and curriculum in California- and it has been since 1986.  Latino student political non participation and alienation from school is significantly caused by Latino absence from the K-12 textbooks and curriculum.

For the last two years the Mexican American Digital History Project and a broad group of allies have been working for to add Chicano history to the California History/Social Science Framework, the document that determines what goes into textbooks in California. See

We are pleased to inform you that the Quality Instructional Materials Commission an advisory committee of the  California State Board of Education have completed their proposed revised framework and it includes most of what we wanted on Mexican American history.  A significant dispute remains on how the document should cover Indian and Hindu history.

The final document will be approved by the QIC on May 19, and soon thereafter by the California State Board of Education.
The documents are here along with a link to the live webcast.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Bernie Rally in Sacramento Monday

Progressive Alliance/Campus 4 Bernie

Bernie Sanders for President

Dear Friends -
Bernie is coming to California on Monday and Tuesday to hold two "A Future to Believe In" rallies — don't miss this chance to see him in person! Join us for a conversation about the issues that matter: making college tuition-free, getting big money out of politics, combating climate change, and much more.
With the California primary coming up, we need everyone to get involved to make these events a success. Can Bernie count on you to join him?
A Future to Believe In Sacramento Rally
Monday, May 9

Doors open at 5:00 pm
Bonney Field at Cal Expo
1600 Exposition Blvd, Sacramento CA

Thursday, May 05, 2016

Happy Cinco de Mayo - Support California Farmworkers

Since Cesar Chavez’ March 31st birthday, nearly 10,000 farm workers took to the streets up and down key California agricultural regions to continue Cesar’s dream. They marched for AB 2757 “The Phase-In Overtime for Agricultural Workers Act of 2016” to ensure farm workers get overtime pay after eight hours--the same as almost every other California worker.

Farm workers toil for low wages hour after hour, often in extreme temperatures and under dangerous conditions. Already more than 7,000 activists have pledged to support this vital bill. Join them by signing the pledge today!

California is the biggest agricultural employer in the nation and one of a handful of states with any overtime protection at all for farm workers. However, these laborers only receive extra pay after working a grueling 10 hours a day.

AB 2757 was introduced on February 19 in California’s legislature. It would gradually move toward paying California farm workers overtime if they labor more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week by the year 2020. We’ve had two previous efforts to enact an eight-hour overtime law in California. The first bill passed the legislature in 2010, but was vetoed by then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. The second lost by just a handful of votes in the Assembly in 2012. The new law would be phased in over four years.

We’re fighting for workers like Jose Gusman who tells us, “It saddens and upsets me that others that work in offices with air conditioning are paid overtime after eight hours of work and farm workers in the valley that work in extreme climates and perform hard and heavy work that nobody wants to do, are paid overtime after 10 hours of work--and we’re paid the lowest wages and we’re exposed to pesticides that are applied in agriculture. I’m thankful to the United Farm Workers for fighting for us suffering farm workers, so that justice is done and we are paid overtime after eight hours worked--which is just.”

Help us support Jose and so many other workers. Sign the pledge today!

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Marcos Breton Criticizes Use of Mexican Flags in the Anti-Trump Protests

Marcos Breton of the Sacramento Bee has an interesting essay today on the California anti Trump protests.
I think that provoking violence at the demonstrations has a similar negative effect. 

Sunday, May 01, 2016

May Day- International Workers' Day

Peter Dreier
Photo by David Bacon 
Unlike the rest of the world's democracies, the United States doesn't use the metric system, doesn't require employers to provide workers with paid vacations, hasn't abolished the death penalty, and doesn't celebrate May Day as an official national holiday.

Outside the U.S., May 1 is international workers' day, observed with speeches, rallies, and demonstrations. Last year, a week after a building collapse in Bangladesh killed over one thousand workers in a sweatshop making clothing for Walmart and other American companies, thousands of garment factory workers paraded through the streets calling for work safeguards and for the owner of the collapsed building to be sentenced to death. This year, too, millions of workers in Europe, Asia, and Latin America are taking to the streets to demand higher wages, better benefits and improved working conditions.

Ironically, this celebration of working-class solidarity was started by the U.S. labor movement and soon spread around the world, but it never earned official recognition in this country.

Since 2001, American unions and immigrant rights activists have resurrected May 1 as a day of protest around both workers rights and immigrant rights. The movement has been gaining momentum, enlisting more and more young immigrants and children of immigrants -- called Dreamers -- in the struggle for comprehensive immigration reform, which would bring many of the estimated 11 million living in the U.S. illegally out of the shadows.