FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Why Mexicans Can’t Win

Counted along with other Latinos of Mexican-origin people make up the largest minority in the United States. In East Los Angeles, the overwhelming population is of Mexican extraction. Why then is it that we can’t win?

After all aren’t we the largest minority in the U.S.? Don’t we keep on hearing that the Sleeping Giant is awake? Yet, since its founding over fifty years ago Mexican Americans have been fighting to get a Mexican American appointed as president of CSULA. The closest we have gotten is the just appointed president who is Italian-American, and whose name ends in a vowel.

Evidence that this is all an illusion is the battle to get the charter of The Semillas Community Schools renewed. Originally it was chartered by the LA Unified School District – 75 percent of the district’s students are Latina/o, but only one of seven members of its board of education is so-called Latino.

The LAUSD dropped Semillas’ Charter largely on the recommendation of Superintendent John Deasy who has very little professional background when it comes to Latino students. This is the same Deasy who refused to help the late Sal Castro when he appealed for district support to take students to Camp Hess Kramer. Sal pled with him showing data that the volunteer program was highly successful in motivating mostly LAUSD students to go to college. Deasy, you have to understand, is a privatizer who is well connected to other privatizers in the city.

This is not the first time that a highly successful program has been dismantled. Take the Mexican American Studies K-12 program in the Tucson Unified School District. It had put a big dent into the dropout epidemic, and Mexican American students were motivated to go to college. It was maligned, called un-American and racist by the racists.

Semillas is an experimental program in one of the poorest of the poorest areas of Los Angeles. Like the Tucson program it has cultural programs, and students have to learn English, Spanish, Nahuatl and Mandarin. Students even visited China. However, the school was not run by a corporation privatizers and thus suspect.

I have been through this “Anything But Mexican” scenario hundreds of times. Once more it is déjà vu! I remember when Dr. Ernesto Galarza in the 1970s became an ardent advocate for bilingual education and in the process ruffled a lot feathers. Galarza was defunded, maligned and attacked by the bilingual establishment. He was literally driven out of the field, which I consider one of the worse moments in Mexican American history. It was disgraceful because even friends of Galarza ran for cover. Many believed that their own funds would be in danger –truly a profile in courage.

Now, Semillas is fighting for its life. It is appealing to the Los Angeles County Office of Education where two of its five board members are Mexican American. Things don’t look good. Semillas has presented documentation – proof – that it is in compliance and successful.

As in the cases of Galarza, Sal and Tucson friends have run for cover in the face of slander, defamation, lies and pressure. It is time for us to have some amor propio and fightback!

Email the Los Angeles County Board and tell them you stand with Semillas and quality education for Mexican Americans/ Latinos. We should not be the anything but people.

RODOLFO ACUÑA, a professor emeritus at California State University Northridge, has published 20 books and over 200 public and scholarly articles. He is the founding chair of the first Chicano Studies Dept which today offers 166 sections per semester in Chicano Studies. His history book Occupied America has been banned in Arizona. In solidarity with Mexican Americans in Tucson, he has organized fundraisers and support groups to ground zero and written over two dozen articles exposing efforts there to nullify the U.S. Constitution.

More articles by:

RODOLFO ACUÑA, a professor emeritus at California State University Northridge, has published 20 books and over 200 public and scholarly articles. He is the founding chair of the first Chicano Studies Dept which today offers 166 sections per semester in Chicano Studies. His history book Occupied America has been banned in Arizona. In solidarity with Mexican Americans in Tucson, he has organized fundraisers and support groups to ground zero and written over two dozen articles exposing efforts there to nullify the U.S. Constitution.

September 18, 2018
Conn Hallinan
Britain: the Anti-Semitism Debate
Tamara Pearson
Why Mexico’s Next President is No Friend of Migrants
Richard Moser
Both the Commune and Revolution
Nick Pemberton
Serena 15, Tennis Love
Binoy Kampmark
Inconvenient Realities: Climate Change and the South Pacific
Martin Billheimer
La Grand’Route: Waiting for the Bus
John Kendall Hawkins
Seymour Hersh: a Life of Adversarial Democracy at Work
Faisal Khan
Is Israel a Democracy?
John Feffer
The GOP Wants Trumpism…Without Trump
Kim Ives
The Roots of Haiti’s Movement for PetroCaribe Transparency
Dave Lindorff
We Already Have a Fake Billionaire President; Why Would We want a Real One Running in 2020?
Gerry Brown
Is China Springing Debt Traps or Throwing a Lifeline to Countries in Distress?
Pete Tucker
The Washington Post Really Wants to Stop Ben Jealous
Dean Baker
Getting It Wrong Again: Consumer Spending and the Great Recession
September 17, 2018
Melvin Goodman
What is to be Done?
Rob Urie
American Fascism
Patrick Cockburn
The Adults in the White House Trying to Save the US From Trump Are Just as Dangerous as He Is
Jeffrey St. Clair - Alexander Cockburn
The Long Fall of Bob Woodward: From Nixon’s Nemesis to Cheney’s Savior
Mairead Maguire
Demonization of Russia in a New Cold War Era
Dean Baker
The Bank Bailout of 2008 was Unnecessary
Wim Laven
Hurricane Trump, Season 2
Yves Engler
Smearing Dimitri Lascaris
Ron Jacobs
From ROTC to Revolution and Beyond
Clark T. Scott
The Cannibals of Horsepower
Binoy Kampmark
A Traditional Right: Jimmie Åkesson and the Sweden Democrats
Laura Flanders
History Markers
Weekend Edition
September 14, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Carl Boggs
Obama’s Imperial Presidency
Joshua Frank
From CO2 to Methane, Trump’s Hurricane of Destruction
Jeffrey St. Clair
Maria’s Missing Dead
Andrew Levine
A Bulwark Against the Idiocy of Conservatives Like Brett Kavanaugh
T.J. Coles
Neil deGrasse Tyson: A Celebrity Salesman for the Military-Industrial-Complex
Jeff Ballinger
Nike and Colin Kaepernick: Fronting the Bigots’ Team
David Rosen
Why Stop at Roe? How “Settled Law” Can be Overturned
Gary Olson
Pope Francis and the Battle Over Cultural Terrain
Nick Pemberton
Donald The Victim: A Product of Post-9/11 America
Ramzy Baroud
The Veiled Danger of the ‘Dead’ Oslo Accords
Kevin Martin
U.S. Support for the Bombing of Yemen to Continue
Robert Fisk
A Murder in Aleppo
Robert Hunziker
The Elite World Order in Jitters
Ben Dangl
After 9/11: The Staggering Economic and Human Cost of the War on Terror
Charles Pierson
Invade The Hague! Bolton vs. the ICC
Robert Fantina
Trump and Palestine
Daniel Warner
Hubris on and Off the Court
John Kendall Hawkins
Boning Up on Eternal Recurrence, Kubrick-style: “2001,” Revisited
Haydar Khan
Set Theory of the Left
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail