'What We [Mexicans] Can Do to Help the Migrants'
By Gloria Munoz Ramirez
Mexico - La Jornada - Original Article (Spanish)
Translated By Carly Gatzert
April 8, 2006
in defense of the rights of immigrants in the United States are being called historic
by virtue of the enormous number of demonstrators. The protests have even been
likened to the awakening of the Latino community from within the entrails of a
monster, but another analysis identifies this phenomenon as the climax of a decades-long
process of organization.
in the United States has been constant ever since half of our territory was
stolen by the U.S. government. However, it wasn't until the second half of the
twentieth century that the battle between the Mexican immigrant community and political
agenda of the U.S. government began.
Cruz, representative of the Xanichetic cooperative (Los Angeles), identifies
the 70s as the pivotal moment in which the Mexican community, Chicanos and
immigrants, began to gather strength. At this point in time, a political party
united by race, that managed to win the mayor's seat in Crystal City, Texas;
and there arose the Crusade for Justice, a militant Chicano alliance, led by Reyes
Tijerina; the anti-war Movement of 1970s in Los Angeles; Brown Beret Cafes (inspired
by the Black Panthers), in addition to high school student protests, and later
on, the struggle of Cesar Chavez and the migrant farm workers.
these movements received the answer of the United States Government:
repression, imprisonment and outright assassination. In the decade of the 80s
we witnessed, beyond the growth of immigrant populations, the strengthening of Latino
institutions, accompanied by the emergence of a political and financial elite, who
reaped the benefits of the resistance of the 1970s.
to Xanichetic's analysis, it was not until the 90s that symbols of resistance there
was a renewed interest on the part of Mexican and Chicano youth in the search
for identity. Today, this battle is taking place in the streets. Since March 7,
the underdog has crossed the threshold, voicing resistance to the
criminalization of the immigrant work force. These are the successors to the
protestors of the 70s; young men and women, many of whom are legal U.S.
citizens, either first or second generation immigrants.
we in Mexico do to show our support? One proposal is to boycott all U.S. businesses.
There is talk of a suspension of immigrant labor in the U.S. on International
Workers' Day [The Great American Boycott, 2006] as a pressure tactic, to make
it widely recognized that Mexican immigrants should have the right to work, an education
for their children and medical services.
This is a
protest for the right to life and dignity. Whether or not you support this
boycott from our side of the border, (in which we will purchase nothing of U.S.
origin, nor from any U.S. franchise such as Dunkin Donuts, McDonalds, Burger
King, Walmart, Seven-Eleven, etc.), we simply can no longer remain indifferent.