Note:  Originally posted at the web site of the Chicano Veterans Organization


Generational: Promises that have a life of their own

Of my ever-expanding list of favorite writers, Linda Valdez writes for the highly conservative-oriented newspaper, the Arizona Republic, continues apace with her latest opinion column, located on Page B-10 [Viewpoints] and that being yesterday, or Sunday, while titled, “Arizona’s subdued rainbow is about to bloom in full color.” And she points “el dedo” or the finger of blame and neglect onto Arizona’s leaders. To wit, she says the following:

“In a state where the median age of native-born Latinos is 18, paying attention to the needs and interests of Latino kids should be a top priority. They are the future. The median age of non-Latino whites in Arizona is 44; for non-Latino blacks, it’s 31. The numbers come from the Pew Hispanic Center.

“Yet instead of leaders who nurtured the talents of young Latinos, Arizona got the four horsemen of the anti-immigrant apocalypse: former state Sen. Russell Pearce, Gov. Jan Brewer, Attorney General Tom Horne and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. All Republicans.

“Instead of celebrating a marvelous cultural heritage, Arizona outlawed bilingual education, criminalized undocumented workers, institutionalized racial profiling, denigrated Mexican American students as gangsters, banned ethnic studies and made it official state policy to harass the undocumented—many of whom are mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, cousins and classmates of Arizona’s young, U.S.-born Latino residents.”

With regard to the 160,000 new and now registered Latino voters since the election cycle of 2008, and as of this past Thursday, 34,320 Latino voter applications and who were registered during these past several weeks, were submitted for acceptance to the Secretary of State’s Office. And all this was accomplished by Promise Arizona and which has been funded primarily by the service-workers union, Unite Here, and thusly, Promise Arizona, recruited and documented over 1,000 volunteers with the majority being students.

Of course, my long-time friend of these many years, Petra Falcon, from my times at Glendale Community College and Arizona State University, our wealth of demonstrated MECHA experiences and combined successes, was put to good use, and as such, Petra, and her army of volunteers, has been tantamount to much hard work and of an exemplary success for our community-wide civic engagement.

And needless to say, but I will, she and her volunteers are well-deserving of our support and recognition. Congratulations!