La Voz - June 2015

Page 1

a publication of the Esperanza Peace & Justice Center

June 2015, Vol. 28 Issue 5

San Antonio, Tejas

On May 15th of 2014,

San Antonio’s City Council approved the Rezoning of Mission Trails Mobile Home Park with a 6-4 vote that included then Mayor Julián Castro’s opposition along with then council members from Districts 1, 4 and 5. This gave the green light to build a highJune 2015 priced luxury apartment building in the vol. 28 issue 5 Mission Reach area and uprooted the Editor Mobile Home Park residents. After the Gloria A. Ramírez vote, Mayor Castro stated: “We need Design to be smarter about how we handle the Monica V. Velásquez issue of gentrification in this city...” He Contributors added, “We move mountains to create Gloria Almaraz, Penny Boyer, jobs in the city, we move mountains to Antonia Castañeda, Liz Davila, preserve our aquifer, we move mounJessica Fuentes, Nettie Hinton, tains to save bats, we move mountains Marco Antonio Mar Jr., Graciela Sánchez to save historic buildings—and we need La Voz Mail Collective to move mountains for people.” He then Mario Carbajal, Iliana Medrano, Juan Díaz, proposed The Task Force on Dynamic Shawn Garner, Natalie Guerrero, and Diverse Communities to seek soluRay McDonald, Angie Merla, María Porter, tions for a better way to revitalize comMaría N. Reed, Mary A. Rodríguez, munities without displacement. Dave Stokes, Helen Villarreal Now, a year and many meetings Esperanza Director later, and with ad-interim Mayor Ivy Graciela I. Sánchez Taylor at the city’s helm, the Task Esperanza Staff Force’s report was up for a vote before Imelda Arismendez, Itza Carbajal, Council on May 14, 2015—a day short Elisa Pérez, Gianna Rendón, Saakred, of the historic displacement of Mission René Saenz, Susana Segura, Trails residents. Two of the Task Force Amelia Valdez, Monica Velásquez members, Nettie Hinton and María Conjunto de Nepantleras Berriozábal voted against accepting the -Esperanza Board of Directorsreport presented—recommending more Brenda Davis, Rachel Jennings, Amy time and specifics before acceptance Kastely, Jan Olsen, Kamala Platt, Ana Lucía Ramírez, Gloria A. Ramírez, Rudy Rosales, by city council. Maria wrote a 9-page critique of the report (available from Tiffany Ross, Lilliana Saldaña, Nadine Saliba, Graciela I. Sánchez, Lillian Stevens She also wrote an editorial in the Express-News • We advocate for a wide variety of social, on May 13 asking that the protection of economic & environmental justice issues. inner-city residents be clearly spelled • Opinions expressed in La Voz are not necessarily those of the Esperanza Center. out before being accepted by council. However, City Council voted FOR the La Voz de Esperanza report, set up a Commision and made is a publication of changes that may favor developers unEsperanza Peace & Justice Center 922 San Pedro, San Antonio, TX 78212 less a new mayor sees fit to protect resi210.228.0201 • fax 1.877.327.5902 dents in the onslaught of gentrification. In this La Voz issue we include some Inquiries/Articles can be sent to: of the testimonies presented to council. San Antonio residents beware! u

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La Voz de Esperanza


Articles due by the 8th of each month Policy Statements

* We ask that articles be visionary, progressive, instructive & thoughtful. Submissions must be literate & critical; not sexist, racist, homophobic, violent, or oppressive & may be edited for length. * All letters in response to Esperanza activities or articles in La Voz will be considered for publication. Letters with intent to slander individuals or groups will not be published. Esperanza Peace & Justice Center is funded in part by the NEA, TCA, theFund, CoYoTe PhoeNix Fund, AKR Fdn, Peggy Meyerhoff Pearlstone Fdn, the DOTE Fdn, Horizon Fdn, New World Fdn, y nuestra buena gente.

El 15 de mayo, 2014, los miembros del Concilio de San Antonio aprobaron el cambio de zonificación para el barrio del Parque Movil de Mission Trails con un voto de 6-4. Los votos en contra incluyeron votos de los miembros del Concilio de distritos 1, 4, y 5—y el alcalde de entonces, Julián Castro. El voto dió la señal para desplazar los residentes y empezar la contrucción de apartamentos de lujo en el area de Mission Reach. Después del voto, Castro, commentó: “Tenemos que tomar decisiones más inteligentes cuando se trata de manejar los problemas de gentrificación en esta ciudad...” Añadió: “Movemos montañas para crear trabajos en esta ciudad, movemos montañas para preservar nuestro acuifero, movemos montañas para salvar murcielagos, movemos montañas para salvar edificios históricos—y necesitamos mover montañas para la gente.” Así, el alcalde Castro propuso El Grupo de Trabajo del Alcalde para Preservar Barrios Dinámicos y Diversos formado para buscar soluciones mejores para revitalizar comunidades sin desplazamiento. Ahora, un año y montónes de reuniones después, y con alcalde interino, Ivy Tayor, el reporte de El Grupo de Trabajo se presentó ante el Concilio el 14 de mayo—un día antes del aniversario del desplazamiento de residentes de Mission Trails. Dos miembros del Grupo no aceptaron el reporte—Nettie Hinton y María Berriozábal—quienes recomendaron mas tiempo y mas detalles antes de aceptar el reporte. Ademas, María escribió una critica detallada de 9 páginas (disponible en y un editorial en el SA Express-News el 13 de mayo pidiendo que la protección de los residentes del centro de la ciudad se expresara claramente con detalles en el reporte antes de ser aceptada por el concilio. Sin embargo el Concilio votó para aceptar el reporte, formó una Comisión y pasaron cambios que— según parece—favorecen a los empesarios con ojo en nuestras tierras. Sólo si elegimos un alcalde que prioritiza los residentes de San Antonio podremos evitar la embestida de gentrificación. ¡Águila, residentes! v

ATTENTION VOZ READERS: If you have a mailing address correction please send it to lavoz@ If you want to be removed from the La Voz mailing list, for whatever reason, please let us know. La Voz is provided as a courtesy to people on the mailing list of the Esperanza Peace and Justice Center. The subscription rate is $35 per year ($100 for institutions). The cost of producing and mailing La Voz has substantially increased and we need your help to keep it afloat. To help, send in your subscriptions, sign up as a monthly donor, or send in a donation to the Esperanza Peace and Justice Center. Thank you. -GAR VOZ VISION STATEMENT: La Voz de Esperanza speaks for many individual, progressive voices who are gente-based, multi-visioned and milagro-bound. We are diverse survivors of materialism, racism, misogyny, homophobia, classism, violence, earth-damage, speciesism and cultural and political oppression. We are recapturing the powers of alliance, activism and healthy conflict in order to achieve interdependent economic/ spiritual healing and fuerza. La Voz is a resource for peace, justice, and human rights, providing a forum for criticism, information, education, humor and other creative works. La Voz provokes bold actions in response to local and global problems, with the knowledge that the many risks we take for the earth, our body, and the dignity of all people will result in profound change for the seven generations to come.

by Graciela Sánchez, Director of the Esperanza Center class, Mexican and Black, have lived in downtown neighborhoods for many generations. Indeed, these are the areas —the ONLY areas—that Mexican and Black people were permitted to live in under historic Jim Crow policies. We have survived racism and economic exploitation by building strong communities holding on to our most treasured cultural traditions. Our communities were assaulted by Urban Renewal in the 1970s, but fortunately, the City and the federal government ran out of money. Now, however, it has become fashionable to “live downtown,” the developers see money to be made, and the City is working to enWhen the press conference finished, we waited in the security line to get into the chambers to speak to councilmembers. When we sat down, we noticed that they weren’t there. able the displacement of our families. After years of protest over downtown Ten council members and the mayor, eleven members, get elected to represent over one gentrification and the courageous struggle million residents. However, only Councilman Warrick and Nirenberg attended this meetby Mission Trails Park residents, Mayor ing—Citizens to be Heard—a session that takes place every Wednesday at 6pm. Castro created the Mayor’s Task Force on Now that council members will get paid, I hope that they honor the residents of San Preserving Dynamic and Diverse NeighAntonio with their presence at these sessions. We’re tired of hearing that folks don’t vote. borhoods last year that was to examine But, it’s no surprise that we stop attending meetings, stop believing in the process—when many City policies that are encouraging we don’t feel that the city council is even interested in hearing what we have to say. This displacement and gentrification and to entire process of democracy is a sham when city council has already made decisions and recommend ways the City can AVOID aren’t interested in what residents have to say. displacement of long-time residents. Additionally, we shouldn’t have our speeches that are already limited to 3 minutes But then Castro went to HUD and Ivy for individuals and 9 minutes for organizations be reduced. We write speeches to keep to Taylor, on the basis of a promise that she our limited times and then council arbitrarily decides to cut back our time so they can go would not run for Mayor, became Interim home or to some other event. We, too, have other responsibilities and have adjusted our Mayor. Under Interim Mayor Taylor’s schedules to accommodate these meetings. Please respect us and give us the amount of control, the Task Force has been diverted time that everyone else gets when they come into these chambers. If there are many of us from its mission. As a part of the original talking about an issue, it only shows that people are concerned. And you should be, also. mission, the Task Force was to “identify It’s an unfortunate truth that the city of San Antonio has a long history of using govpolicies and programs that encourage ernmental power to enable corporate insiders to take property and other community assets investment in inner city neighborhoods from working class San Antonians to give them to their wealthy clients and customers. but minimize or prevent displacement of City government has allowed commercial development that threatens our water supply, people or adverse impacts related to hishas refused to impose living wage and employment protections, and has permitted local tory, culture, and quality of life of unique utility companies (SAWS and CPS) to charge high residential rates in order to subsidize neighborhoods.” Yet, the committee never commercial use. seriously examined the city’s policies that In the past several years, developers are focusing on the downtown area and the City encourage gentrification such as: the Tax is again using its considerable power to suppress and control our communities in order Increment Reinvestment Zone; the vacant to facilitate exploitation by the wealthy minority. Our communities, poor and working

n May 6th over 80 individuals held a press conference at 5pm outside of San Antonio’s council chambers to let the larger community know that we weren’t happy with the report by the Task Force on Dynamic and Diverse Communities.

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cont’d on p.7


District 2 member of the Mayor’s Task Force on Preserving Dynamic and Diverse Neighborhoods,

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am 76 years old. I was born and raised on the east side of San Antonio. I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, taught 3 years at an SAISD elementary school on the west side then moved to Washington, D. C. for a career with the US Treasury Department/US Customs Service. Thirty years later, I returned to San Antonio to live once again on the east side. I was then, and am now, appalled at the deleterious effect on my community of the years of benign neglect inflicted by the City of San Antonio. The east side has not been an “IN” place to live even though the culturally vibrant and diverse community is located a few blocks from the two most important tourist sites in the State of Texas—the Alamo and the Riverwalk. East side residents’ tax dollars have not returned to the community in terms of infrastructure development and maintenance. Our students walking to school, our seniors trying to maneuver in wheel chairs or using walkers must travel to and fro in the pot holed streets because sidewalks are unavailable or they have telephone poles sitting in the middle of them. How sad! How inhumane!! How ripe for gentrification! The heartless displacement of the long-time residents who lived in modest circumstances along the historically neglected Mission Trail was the genesis of former Mayor Castro’s reason for forming his task force to PRESERVE dynamic and diverse neighborhoods. Had the possibility of a UNESCO designation not occurred, the wonderful families in the trailer park would NOT have been kicked to the curb in order for capitalistic greed to be served. Watch out when governance comes to you with relocation pittances declaring the action is to further your economic development. At one point in the task force meetings a member sought to remind me that I grew up in the kind of mixed-income community that some are promoting as the panacea for lowincome workers currently living in neighborhoods targeted for gentrification. Yes, born in 1939 on the corner of Olive and Center Street—in what is now called the Dignowity Hill Historic District—I lived in a mixed-income community. Jim Crow segregation mandated mixed-income communities. Once the post-emancipation laws prohibiting free people from buying property that was not in an alley was lifted, restrictive

Photo: Jerry Lara / S.A. Express-News

covenants on deeds prohibited owners from selling homes to blacks or even allowing black maids, nannies and cooks from living in or staying overnight in the residence. As a result, black doctors, teachers, lawyers, clergy, etc. lived right next door to their neighbors who toiled in San Antonio’s low-income service industry jobs They had income disparities, but they were ONE community facing the SAME legally mandated discrimination. Today, city-wide, San Antonio, a minority majority city, has the highest income disparity in the state. Fifty-one percent of San Antonio citizens are renters who still labor in service industry jobs. The best schools are on the north side or in the suburbs but infrastructure development is in the north and northwest sectors of the I truly city. Transportation goals are not aimed at alleviating the necessity of bus dependent believe low income workers having to transfer that Mayor two or three times in order to get from their modest homes to their work places. Castro’s In order to become the 5th largest task force city in the USA will the City of San Antonio annex land on the east and south vision has side in order to bring city services to been highunderserved families? No! Plans are to annex multiple rooftops in areas where jacked and people who want no part of the city but who represent big tax dollars. perverted. There are parts of this city staff-driven task force report that are people driven and are supportable particularly those that thwart displacement, offer low or no interest loans to eligible homeowners to repair or rehabilitate properties, land bank programs to protect infill from being developed for high rent apartments or condos, and incentives for developers to produce workforce housing. I still can not support the final report because it does not in totality recommend that the people’s interests be protected. It has been rushed to City Council in order to schedule a “Housing Summit” & to assume consideration by the current Mayor & council—not a newly elected one that may reintroduce Mayor Castro’s vision. I truly believe that Mayor Castro’s task force vision has been high-jacked and perverted. The task force was intended to address displacement and to assume that City policies, ordinances and zoning procedures protected our most vulnerable citizens from exploitation—both, cultural and economic exploitation. v

Women and the

Gendered Inequalities | by Antonia Castañeda

of the Mayor’s Task Force on Preserving Dynamic and Diverse Neighborhoods I represent the Westside Preservation Alliance, an organization concerned with preserving the history, culture, and architecture of working class communities in San Antonio, especially in the Westside, where people, their homes and other structures are especially vulnerable; all too often targeted for demolition. These communities are especially vulnerable to displacement and disappearance, one of the many consequences of gentrification. Thank you everyone for being here; civic engagement and expression of concern to our public officials in a very public

with children in San Antonio, both homeowners and renters, are spending more than 30% of their income on housing. Together, they total 54% of married couples with kids; 68% of single fathers, and a massive 98% of single mothers. I repeat, 98% of single mothers in San Antonio pay over 30% of their income on housing. As we might expect, Income is another pivotal building block for women’s financial security. And in the San Antonio Metro area, a major “wage gap” of $7,364 per year exists between

...housing [is] a primary building block for women’s financial security... full time working men and women. That is, women earn 82 cents for every dollar a man earns. The wage gap is reflected in the same sectors, where women earn almost a thousand dollars less than men! Jobs more common for women tend to pay less than jobs more common for men. Not surprisingly, single mothers in San Antonio area are much more likely to live in poverty: Of two parent households, 10% live in Poverty; of single father households, 21% live in poverty; and of single mother households, 40% live in poverty. Child care costs are 23% of a single mothers’ income. Time constraints today do not permit us to address other pivotal issues pertaining to financial

Women in the S.A. metro area earn $7,364 less than men a year. *Illustration from Economic Issues for Women In TX Report.

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way continues to be a critically important venue for holding publicly elected officials accountable to their constituency. These are the actions of which Democracy is made! We hold Mayor Taylor accountable for the refusal to tackle the issue of gentrification as part of the Task Force on Preserving Dynamic and Diverse Neighborhoods, for essentially subverting the intent and process of the Task Force, and for the lack of deeper analysis and wider context of the current Report. With respect to deeper analysis, I want to focus on gender, specifically on women, and the reality of women and housing in the San Antonio, which the Task Force did not address. Here I draw upon the document entitled “Economic Issues for Women in Texas: San Antonio Metro Area” that the Texas Women’s Foundation and the Center for Public Policy Priorities prepared and presented at Café College in the fall of 2014.1 This Report identifies housing as a primary building block for women’s financial security, and calls it the ANCHOR. Accordingly, the majority of all families

security, including education, child care, and insurance. The point here is that the Mayor’s Task Force on Preserving Dynamic and Diverse Neighborhoods in San Antonio, the city that the PEW Research Center identified as the most economically segregated City in the United States, failed to address housing issues among the sector of our populate who are the most housing burdened, and thus the most vulnerable among our city’s residents—low income, single mothers—who live in the most vulnerable of our inner city neighborhoods.2 Certainly Mission Trails Mobile Home Park, in which the City Council members’ vote on rezoning, displaced and discarded over three hundred long-time residents, amply bears out this truth. The majority of the residents of Mission Trails were women, and over one hundred and fifty were children. The children of Mission Trails, and the children of single mothers throughout the city, are our future, Mayor Taylor. We can best secure their future, and the future of San Antonio, by understanding and addressing their housing needs; and by ensuring that working class families, and most especially working class women, and particularly single women with children are able to remain in their homes and in their neighborhood. The report, which does not mention the gendered inequalities rampant in all aspects of life in our city, beginning with the housing burden that single women with children in San Antonio live, needs to be specifically, clearly, fully addressed in the Report of the Task Force on Preserving Dynamic and Diverse Neighborhoods, and the proposed Commission on Housing further charged with conceptualizing and developing equitable solutions to the gendered inequalities pertaining to housing that were patently, painfully evident in travesty that is the manner in which the city dealt with the Mission Trails residents by rezoning their homes out from under them. v



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by Jessica Fuentes


’m very grateful to the community members who represented longtime inner city residents at the Task Force meetings. I also want to thank those who authored the op-ed pieces that came out to reject the report. These pieces echo what so many of us feel and want to say, which is: A response to a council who thinks its’ sole charge is to facilitate the ability of a few developers and their proxies to make money off the backs of us, the taxpayers. This council uses words like “revitalization” and “economic development” to mask the true nature of “buying low and selling high”. So then, Center City Development can turn around and say we have “100 new units” in this “depressed” area. But you fail to mention that our hard-earned tax dollars are subsidizing each unit upwards of $25,000 dollars per unit! How about $25,000 to the Mission Trails residents who are still struggling? The city, through its’ policies, helps developers “buy low” by the myriad of tax incentives, cold cash, and fee waivers. This could be acceptable if the targeted area had no current residents, but when its sole purpose is to get rid of “those people” … to get rid of us and replace us with the creative class, empty nesters, transplants, cultural and economic elites then it is a crime; a sad indictment of this council’s opinion of us: the residents they claim to be helping.

Mayor Taylor believes that perhaps we should look to her home town of NY, Harlem, or the Bronx, as to how spectacular “new Urbanism” is; but all I see is how developers have found a way to make money off of the property they had abandoned to poor minorities 50 years prior. San Antonio is not New York. We didn’t abandon the less fortunate to crime and neglect. I’m tired of attending panel after panel, hearing after hearing, where you all and city leaders like Ramiro Cavazos [President & CEO of the S.A. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce] sing the praises of people with stories who bought a house in an older neighborhood or who left the barrio or the East side but have come back. How we should all be like them. “Kudos to Mr. So and So …, Wow! … He left and returned to rehab a house … returned to start a family. Wow! We should all strive to be like Mr. So and So! How about singing the praises of those of us who have NEVER LEFT? How about la Sra. Gonzalez or la familia Rodriguez? How about us?

I live in Beacon Hill.

I’ve been a resident of my neighborhood for over 35 years. My father was an electrician who retired from SAC and my Mom, a homemaker and caregiver. My sisters and I were educated in the elementary school across the street from my house, St. Ann’s, and we all went to Providence High School, downtown.

Photo: Jerry Lara / S.A. Express-News

A Dead Neighborhood?

My neighbors and I have kept up our homes as best we could, we speak our beloved languages of English and Spanish, and we frequent neighborhood establishments.

Those of us who have lived in Beacon Hill for generations have sustained our neighborhood, after it was abandoned by many who left to suburbia. Yet, during our highly publicized zoning issue last year pertaining to 115 Michigan, Mayor Taylor, you had the audacity to say we were a “dead” neighborhood, and furthermore, that we needed “life breathed into us.” The applicant, Celeste Wackenhut, who requested the zoning change on behalf of the property owner, Jeffrey Dersh, with the help of the high dollar land use law firm, Kaufman & Killen, added insult to injury when she wrote in an open letter to thencouncilman Diego Bernal that we’ve been “exiled to live in a neighborhood where the only business we have is a gun shop!”

Photo: Jerry Lara / S.A. Express-News

Heck, the councilman didn’t even show up to vote on this controversial issue. He couldn’t look us in the eye to vote against the majority of homeowners who opposed the zoning change. He knew it was wrong and he didn’t have the courage to stop it. Instead, he and this council rewarded a business that operated illegally for over a year! Beacon Hill is a primarily Mexican and Mexican American working-class neighborhood and, as these op-ed articles point out, we HAVE held on to our cultural traditions resulting in thriving businesses in our neighborhood: Tamales, barbacoa, tacos, raspas, quinceañera party rentals, panaderías, antique shops, burger places, auto repair, etc. But, because we don’t have art galleries and hipster coffee shops, that qualifies us as “dead”? Because the applicant, Celeste Wackenhut, does not identify or relate to the raspa shop in her backyard, figuratively and literally DIRECTLY behind the house she rents, she has the right to say we have no businesses where

“people” can go to? Since we do not have cocktail bars with fancy name drinks, we need life breathed into us? We’re not even “people” according to the applicant, and we’re not “alive” according to you, Mayor Taylor. What is important to us, is not important. You get to erase us. Ironically, as a Mexican American, I am descended from a great civilization that created great works of art and

produces highly sought after coffee. And the fancy name cocktails? ... are usually made with a liquor from Latin America. Yet, we are treated as ignorant who don’t know what’s “good for us”. So, again, thank you to my colleagues for writing these op-eds. I reiterate: Council Should Reject the Gentrification Report. Those of us who live and have lived in our older, established inner-city neighborhoods deserve to stay. We should not fear displacement. This is our home. v

...Graciela Sanchez’ Task Force Statement, cont’d from p. 3

year ago were essentially displaced by the majority of this council when they changed the zoning of their homestead. They should also honor the hundreds or thousands that have been displaced in the last few years on Roosevelt St, at the Victoria Courts, at the Alazan Apache Courts and those who lost homes through aggressive code compliance enforcement targeted at the poorest communities in Districts two, five and one. We asked that Council take the time to recognize that this Task Force had a serious job to undertake. Council members should have asked the Task Force to continue its work to develop effective policies to preserve and protect our historical communities and cultures. By doing this, council would have honored those who have been displaced or made homeless by these policies. The council would have shown respect to Task Force members and the community who spent hundreds of hours attending meetings, researching other U.S. cities’ policies and practices for alternative programs and policies that protect our most vulnerable residents and communities. v Note: Read editorial for an update on The Mayor’s Task Force.

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buildings ordinance; code compliance policies and practices that encourage anonymous reporting and concentration of enforcement in low income inner city neighborhoods; discriminatory funding for park and street maintenance; and the lack of support for efficient and affordable mass transit for these communities. Interim Mayor Taylor’s insistence on a short deadline for the Task Force report didn’t allow time to consider alternatives that have been adopted in other cities such as: the limitations on “flipping;” property tax relief for long-time residents; a moratorium on building permits; community land trusts; individual home rehabilitation funding, etc. Under Taylor’s leadership, the Task Force was used to present the appearance of openness as if the city was willing to consider

community input on its pro development policies. Yet, community views and experiences were not permitted to affect the content of the Task Force’s work. The agenda for the Task Force was set by the Mayor and city staff who drafted the report based on four community meetings that the Mayor failed to attend. As a result, Interim Mayor Taylor did not hear the moving testimonies from long time residents who are being displaced or who are experiencing well grounded fear that they will lose their homes and communities. After the meetings, the report was approved with two dissenting votes from Task Force members, Maria Berriozábal and Nettie Hinton. On May 6th as part of Interim Mayor Taylor’s accelerated schedule, the report was presented to Council. Unbeknownst to Council and the Task Force, this version of the report had been altered by staff. Council was asked to formally adopt this report and its recommendations on May 14th. However, we asked council to delay the vote or to vote no. As council members, who will soon get paid for their work, we feel that they should take the needed time to honor the 300 residents of Mission Trails, who a


g n i c n Da with theChildren

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by Gloria Almaraz, reporter


emember when you were in elementary school and you were selected to be part of a school program that featured a dancing segment? In my case, I was in the fourth grade; and I was part of a group that was taught square dancing. Not only was I supposed to learn how to square dance, I also had to touch a boy’s hand! Yuck! Anyway, week after week, we practiced the different dance movements until the big day arrived. Somehow, the four couples selected to perform before our parents, teachers, and student body survived the ordeal—and we were not scarred for life. Fast-forward to today’s school programs in San Antonio’s Edgewood Independent School District—the only school district currently teaching ballroom dancing to third-graders in six of its elementary schools. Can you imagine being nine years old and learning how to dance the tango and merengue? Many of us, as adults, can only dream of trying to learn how to execute the intricate steps of the tango and to move our hips to the merengue beat. The program, Dancing With the Children, that is responsible for ballroom dancing in the school district, has been in existence in Edgewood for several years. The Executive Director is Jorge Alonso Pérez. The two dance directors who dedicate their time to teach the Edgewood elementary students are: Adriana Araujo Bruton and Robert Ramírez. Ms. Bruton teaches at Roy Cisneros, Gardendale, Henry B. González, Loma Park and Stafford Elementary Schools. Mr. Ramírez teaches at Las Palmas Elementary School. If you wonder about the expertise in ballroom dancing that these two instructors have —both are professional ballroom dancers who taught and competed for major dance studios. While Ms. Bruton still maintains an independent dance business, Mr. Ramírez retired from dance to practice law full-time and is still considered one of the best ballroom dancers in San Antonio. To participate in the dance program, students are nominated by counsellors and teachers with their parents’ consent. Two dances are taught each school year. The students meet one hour

@ Edgewood ISD

per week for their dance lessons and are taught proper dance form (dance posture and frame), dance patterns, timing, etc. An average of 30 students per school participate in the dance program for a total enrollment of 182 students this year (2015). The group is comprised of third graders, although there are some second and fourth graders. Their ages range from 8 to 11 years old. This school year, 2014-2015, the dances being taught are tango and merengue. The dances are selected by the Executive Director and the two dance directors who determine a standard curriculum at the beginning of the year to insure that all students are taught the same material. Among the dances that have been taught in past are salsa, cha cha cha, and swing to name a few. Near the end of the school year, competitions are held during the first week of May at the participating six elementary schools with six couples per school advancing to the districtlevel competition. The elementary school competitions are not open to the public; however, the district-level competition is open. This year it was held on Saturday, May 23, at 8 am at The Neighborhood Place, 3014 Rivas Street. Students are evaluated on their performance in the two dances and receive a cumulative score on both dances. They are judged on dance posture and frame, execution of dance patterns, timing, partnership (leading and following), footwork, and interpretation.Community leaders judge the competition and select first, second, and third place winners with winners being awarded trophies and gift certificates. So far, District Attorney Nico LaHood and his wife, Davida, and U.S. Congressman Joaquin Castro have agreed to be celebrity judges. Certificates of participation and smaller trophies are given to all competitors. In addition, the school of the first-place winners gets to display the large district championship trophy for the coming school year. Where one might question the significance of teaching ballroom dancing to elementary students, the benefits of participation in such programs go far beyond merely learning how to dance. Dancing classes include activities designed to promote ease in public speaking, express creativity, teach social responsibility and plant the seed for college and career plans. As a result of participation in these dance programs, parents and

Gardendale Elementary

Henry B. González Elementary

shirts to match their partner’s dress. Think “Dancing with the Stars” but with younger competitors. Students interviewed for this article affirmed that they have a greater appreciation for attending school and derive many benefits from participating in the dance program. This reporter was especially impressed with these students’ self-confidence and their ability of selfexpression at such a young age. What other school program can offer such benefits? A new school year will see new students and the process begin again.

Las Palmas Elementary

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teachers have seen marked improvement in the students’ school attendance; self-esteem; sense of self; discipline; pride in one’s appearance, posture, and demeanor as well as greater participation and expression in school activities; an expanded vocabulary; and an appreciation for teamwork. The competing couples and their parents take this competition seriously, and the couples dress up for the event. You may see the girls wearing fancy sequined dresses while the boys wear suits or tuxedoes with matching color

Las Palmas Elementary

At this printing, 3 of the 6 schools in Edgewood I.S.D.—Las Palmas, Henry B. González and Gardendale competed to advance to the district-wide dance competitions. The next issue of La Voz will follow-up with the finalists and winners! 9

On Honeybees, Diversity and Al Gore’s Climate Reality Leadership Corps Training by Penelope Boyer

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n Monday March 2nd I attended a screening of The Vanishing of the Bees sponsored by Green Spaces Alliance of South Texas. Although my dad tried beekeeping for a bit when I was a kid, I was astonished at how little I knew about bees. Two mysteries stung me: 1) Colony Collapse Disorder to which colossal numbers of honeybees have been lost in recent years and no one knows why but climate change is blamed; and 2) life in the honeybee colony itself which I learned to my awe and astonishment is not filled with male drones but with a majority female population serving the lone queen bee (male drones are few in the hive and exist only to mate). Honeybee society is a matriarchal, largely female, homosocial domain where girl bees grow into adults and at each stage of her life she performs different roles—from preener to pollinator, scourer to scout. Life in a hive is a female-managed, highly complex democracy with equitable decision-making policies, careful communication conveyed through descriptive dancing and intricate housekeeping/honey-producing rules. Between seeing The Vanishing of the Bees on March 2nd and packing for Cedar Rapids on May 2nd, I have apprenticed myself to local apiarist, Liz Rendon, who has several hives scattered throughout the Southside, read six books on bees including Bill McKibbon’s Honey and Oil chronicling his founding of the environmental activist movement,, peppered with visits to a Vermont beekeeper friend’s farm, and gotten Rick Fink, owner of Bandera Bees and president of Alamo Area Beekeepers, to install ten hives at Land Heritage Institute, the 1200 acre Southside property I have worked with for 10+ years that is under development as a land museum. That film motivated me into that much action—who knew! Packing for Cedar Rapids? Yes, I traveled to Cedar Rapids, Iowa this first week of May to participate in Al Gore’s 28th Climate Reality Leadership Corps training! I had never heard of it myself until the end of April—I applied immediately. The application asked for a picture of yourself doing something you love—I sent a shot of me in one of Liz’s bee suits, a new vocation though I may love more the honeybee’s homosocial democracy than actual apiary activities. The application also asked me to commit to ten climate actions to be conducted

within the next twelve months. This story is one; stay tuned for more. The deal is that the training is free and they give you lunches, breakfasts and break snacks, but you have to get yourself there and lodge yourself. I found a Couchsurfing host, slept on an inflatable mattress in her sewing room and walked nearly three miles each way/day to the DoubleTree Hotel where the training was held. The first day of training was Cinco de Mayo—what would have been my Dad’s 90th birthday, a nice commemoration to a would-have-been beekeeper, I thought. I was assigned to Table 39 located at the very back of this huge hotel ballroom. Great: Gore would be miles away. If he’s there at all. At this point, I really didn’t really know what I was in for. Online information about the 3-day training was sketchy, especially Gore’s part in it. It was clear he would introduce the Mayor of Cedar Rapids, and thrilling when he appeared, but he read the intro (kinda clumsily) and then he was off. Was that all for Al? Mayor Ron Corbett rattled off famous facts about the city, some funny, then spoke feverishly of the 2008 flood— the destruction, devastation, aftermath, relief and recovery— that tragic cycle we’ve all become too familiar with in recent decades. We began to understand we were brought to Iowa not only because the 2016 Presidential Primaries loomed: We were brought here by the flood. Two panels followed but what struck me and others was that all panelists were white. I commented on this on the summit’s private Facebook page. (Social media activity was encouraged, even rewarded with t-shirts and caps.) Worse was the hue around the huge ballroom was pale. This was Iowa, but it was also 2015. There were 329 participants from 14 countries and about 2/3 of the states represented. At Table 39 we were four women, five men. A young gal from a Cedar Rapids youth group, flitted frequently from our table to find her swarm; she eventually left our disproportioned hive. That left Mamalynn, Geert and me as the female worker bees of Table 39. Mamalynn is a community activist from Des Moines.

The fif i rst climate is the climate between people.

his experiments. They moved to Iowa to try to live a more sustainable life and grow an organic garden. Two weeks ago she watched An Inconvenient Truth and Googled Al Gore; he had an invitation to apply to the Cedar Rapids training on his website, and here she is—without her husband. So from our front row seats, Table 39 got to take in the extraordinary Day 2 of the Climate Reality training: A 9-5 analysis by Al Gore of his ever-continuously-updated slide-deck presentation on climate crises and the science of climate change reality. This former United States Vice President is personally training a volunteer corps of Climate Leaders, people to present highly-personalized (because they’ve learned and value the power of storytelling) versions his very own slide shows—miniversions of the Keynote (Apple’s version of Power Point; Gore proudly sits on Apple’s board and was sporting his brand new Apple Watch) presentation documented in the multiple Academy Award winning documentary and Grammy Award winning audio book of his book of the same name, An Inconvenient Truth. The “inconvenient truth” is “the truth about the climate crisis…[it] means we are going to have to change the way we live our lives.” Each of us had a binder containing the slide deck images and all of us post-training will have access to the spankingnew Reality Hub, a centralized online network for alumni of the 28 Climate Reality Leadership Corps trainings, now nearly 7000 strong. The Reality Hub has ready-to-download slide sets straight from Al Gore’s laptop, and Gore pledged-with apologies to his staff—to upload weekly 20-minute slide sets with the most current climate images available. The man deserves that Nobel Prize. Gore’s daylong dissection of his slide presentation was divided into three sections; Table 39 crafted questions at each interval as instructed. Table questions were curated by Climate Reality staff for Gore’s consideration. The final question Table 39 submitted was not selected; it read: “You mentioned the Civil Rights, LGBT and Feminist Movements as examples of positive social change. How can we better include these groups to form a more diverse and inclusive Climate Reality Project?” In my mind, main criticisms one could have of the training (they served the healthiest vegetarian-only food, everything else was recycled/recyclable and green, no complaints there) are 1) the Climate Reality Project is truly a top-down autocracy leaving little room for any voice other than Al Gore’s—though his is mighty and fine and his images constitute a global cry; and 2) when there is trickle down and others are given voice— at least in Cedar Rapids—people of color were not among the presenters. Much pride was given to youth among the participants and the event closed with a little girl named Rehia from Lehore, Pakistan, reciting endearingly in her lilting English Sarah Weeks’ poem, Let it Spin, about the humble bumblebee before Gore left us with our last challenge to go out and do our (his) work. The next Climate Reality Leadership Corps training [www.] takes place in Miami, Sept. 28-30. I’m pretty confident it will be more culturally diverse than the Cedar Rapids session was. Go if you can. Swarm! Bio: Penny Boyer has been an author, activist and actor. She has queerated a number of exhibitions for the Esperanza and is Special Projects Coordinator for Land Heritage Institute.

LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5•

“The first climate,” she says, “is the climate between people.” She describes what she is trying to do as “mobile sustainable education.” She works across issues, but as an African-American her interest is in getting more people involved—and by people she means people of color or “ordinary people” as she calls them. Toward that end, she brought with her Evelyn who was assigned to another table but kept checking in on Table 39— especially on days 2 and 3 when, in an act of divine intervention the powers that be switched everything around and Table 39 got re-positioned at the very front of the ballroom giving us the best seats in the house for what turned into the best days of the training. Evelyn is a deep green devil’s advocate, asking whether the push for solar and wind energy by the training’s presenters might be motivated by their own investments in those fields. This is a woman who says she’s been waiting since September for a “Farm Number” for her urban farm at which she’s hosted twenty refugee families from Nepal. She claims she’s asked the gal at the USDA, “What needs to be done to get my Farm Number?” And the gal has answered, “Oh, it just takes a few moments.” “Then why can’t I get my Farm Number, Top Left: Penny; Right: Geert & I’ve been waiting since Mamalynn; Bottom Left: Penny & Al Gore September?” She believes the delay is because once she has her Farm Number she is eligible for grants and by not giving her a Farm Number they are de facto excluding her from the grants process. She’s right, of course. Geert lives in Fairfield, Iowa but only recently moved there having lived fourteen years in California with her husband. They are both from New Delhi, India. She’s a software technologist who works remotely from her virtual home office with colleagues in China, France, Poland, Canada and the U.S. Her husband has installed solar panels on over 500 homes representing over 3.6 megawatts of solar energy (that’s a lot, she points out). In California, he converted a Hummer to run on used restaurant vegetable oil and tried to convert another car to electric. She’s the one with the stable job to support


LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5•

by Marco Antonio Mar Jr.


ou’re always there—working. Passersby drive by without a care or notice you’re there. The only reason they talk to you—or should I say, acknowledge you—is to gesture a wave indicating, no. You’re the windshield washer that stands on the corner of Fredericksburg Road intersecting Frontage Road underneath the I-10 highway near Beacon Hill. Instead of panhandling, you took up a trade. A trade known by many generations in your home country—our Mother country. You’re an immigrant from Mexico, I can tell, you look like my parents. (More than likely you share the same values as my parents. Much respect to that, sir.) Day in and day out while driving home from work, I see you there with a Windex bottle filled with your very own concoction of generic washing liquid (works better than Windex and environmentally friendly, I bet; the only thing those passersby care about). Every day, hundreds, maybe thousands speed by you and I wonder how many people genuinely acknowledge you and the meaning of the work you do. Many argue that you come and take jobs from so called “Americans” whose ancestors once traveled by boat from an empire and King they wished to flee from long ago (remind you of anyone, passersby?). Windshield washer, you probably came to this country for the same reasons my parents did, to escape poverty, escape an extremely corrupt political system (as if America is better off), escape a government not working for the people, just like those “Americans” once did back in 1492. Every day people refuse your windshield washing service; some hand you a few bucks; others won’t even glance at you. Generally, there are more people that ignore you rather than acknowledge you. When we choose to ignore you, we ignore more than a windshield washer. We ignore the fact that you are not taking jobs away from Americans (I have yet to see a white male mix a homemade cleaning agent to wash windshields as a mean of making a few dollars every now and then, save for Mr. Clean, but he only stands there and lets the woman do all the work, never lifting a finger). They ignore the fact that instead of asking for money, you’re working for your money just like they are. You’re trying to make a decent living in an indecent world, where people discriminate, judge and hate based off of the color of your skin. (The only reason it’s so brown is because you’re out on the farms picking their organic fruits and vegetables! But, those passersby don’t realize that.) Those passersby ignore the fact that you’re human just like they are; you’re living, breathing and making an honest dollar, just like they are (or maybe not, white collar crimes typically involve embezzling money, a not so honest dollar). They ignore their indecencies and forget where they came from, but you? You know where you come from. The trade you utilize to make ends meet, to place food on your table, to buy clothing and provide shelter for yourself is proof of that you will never forget. You see—growing up, my family would take trips to Mexico and there I would see many windshield washers providing for their families the same way you are here in the States. Windshield washer, you brought over this trade from the motherland, Mexico, and decided to use that trade to make an honest living in the United States of America. For that, I commend you and I write about you so that someone may realize that you are working hard and not a burden to society as some may think. v Bio: Marco is a native Texan poet who grew up in the Rio Grande Valley and has lived in San Antonio for the last seven years. His passion for social justice issues inspires him to write.


y name is Liz Davila, I’m a leader with Texas Organizing Project (TOP); I reside in the same house I was raised in, in the Westside. My parents met and married in Eagle Pass; they moved and purchased the house I was raised in—in 1938. They raised 10 children, 7 girls and 3 boys; I am the 7th born. My parents taught us to go to church, work hard, save your money and make sure to VOTE and never turn your back on family. I live in a unique neighborhood. Just on my block, 8 adult children have moved back with their parents to care for them. My neighbors and I have a special connection because we grew up together, we exchanged comic books and we cared for our parents. I tell you this because in the old neighborhoods we care for our families, regardless of whether we are related or not. We love our neighborhood and have NO plans on MOVING OUT. We want to thank you for finally listening to us and doing for us. We might be poor but we count, we ARE HUMAN BEINGS. We will ALL have a WATCHFUL EYE on you to make sure you don’t turn your backs on us and make sure you don’t pull the rug out from underneath us. The city spends up to $10,000 on tearing down (demolishing) a home that needs repairs. Most of these people are seniors or low-income families that can barely pay their property taxes. These people end up letting go of the property and in place of a home, there is now an empty lot. The city NEEDS to invest the demolition fees into home rehabilitation. Why let those demolition fees go unpaid; you are just throwing our taxpayer money away. We are infested by empty lots—put our money where it counts— into home rehabilitations. v

For the generous donations for


Antonia Castañeda: Su Vida y Su Obra 03/28/15 Tot y Ward Albro • Maria Baeza-Smith y Bill Smith • Rusty Barcelo • Maria Antonietta y Manuel Berriozábal • Dudley Brooks y Tomás Ybarra-Frausto • Miryam Bujanda y Gerry Poyo • Amalia Cabezas y Alejandro & Alfredo Rodríguez • Genie y Ron Calgaard • Norma Cantú y Elvia Niebla • Dolores y Gilberto Cárdenas • Rosa y Jaime Chahín • Ellen Riojas Clark • Cynthia Cortez y Pedro Rodríguez • Nelda y Hank Cortez • Micaela Díaz-Sánchez • Siboney Díaz-Sánchez • Estevan Rael-Gálvez y Juan Ríos • Claudia y Andrés • Deena J. González • González • Cherie y Russell Hamilton • Linda Heidenreich • Gabi y Rob Huesca • José Jiménez • Cris y Nicolás Kanellos • Marsha Krassner y David Spener • Mary Lawler • Ileana Rivera y Mark Liberatore • Mia y Carlos Madrid • Concha Madrid-Silva • Bela, Nico, Raul Madrid y Paloma Díaz-Lobos • Marisa Madrid • Thomas Payton • Cynthia y Lidia Pérez • Celina Peña y Michael Soto • Mimi Quintanilla & David Schwartz • Barbara Ras • Gloria A. Ramírez • Gail & Marcus Raney • Richard Reed & Alice Chatillon • Raquel Rubio y Barclay Goldsmith • Graciela Sánchez y Amy Kastely • Ahia Shabaaz & Warren Moore • Sussan Siavoshi • Carmen Tafolla • Charles Talbot • Ann Van Pelt y John McCusker

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González, Gabriela González, Donna Guerra, Luz María Gordillo,

Urquijo-Ruiz, Tómas Ybarra- Frausto, and the Esperanza & S. A. a great success! 05/02/15 Express-News archives

LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5•

Gracias, buena gente, Photo Exhibit Contributors:


THANK YOU FOR YOUR DONATIONS TO esperanza during the BIG GIVE S.A. 2015 Lance Aaron • Linda Alaniz • Maria Alejandro • Robert Alvarado • Helen Ballew • Esmeralda Baltazar • Teresa Barajas • Azul Barrientos • denise barkhurst • Janie Barrera • Ruth Battiato • DeeDee Belmares • Dwayne Bohuslav • Allen Buck • Mia Buentello • CGM Consulting • Gilda Cantú • Itza Carbajal • Gioconda Costello • Annette D’Armata • Bonita de León • Rachel Delgado • Elisabeth Delgado • Sara DeTurk • Karen Díaz • Ismael Dovalina • Tim Duda • Sandy Dunn • John Elder • Carol Epstein • Anne Ferguson • Rosa Fernandez • Andrea Figueroa • Gregory Fox • Benjamin Friedrich • Rose García • Norma Gómez • Jessica Gonzáles • Shirley Gonzales • Carlos González • Maria Elena González-Cid • Sarah Gould • Janet Grigsby • Elena Guajardo • Esther Guajardo • Ruth Guajardo • Stephen Guzman • Jennifer Gwin • Amanda Haas • Jennifer Hall • Lydia Hamner • Marilyn Harrington • Olga Hernández • Ramon Hernandez • Araceli Herrera • Hoyt Hilsman • Jon Hinojosa • Gary Houston • Pat Jasso • Stuart Johnson • Eduardo Juárez • Mia Kang • Rosemarie Kanusky • Christina Kastely • Amy Kastely • Leslea Kroll • Marisa Laufer • Carl Leafstedt • Eleonore Lee • Linda Libby & Pat Saliba • Rodolfo López • Juan López • Rebecca López • Yadhira Lozano • Charlotte-Anne Lucas • Arturo Madrid • Josephine Martin • Rose Martinez • Joel Mayer • Roland G. Mazuca • Raymond McDonald • Jamie McDonald • Denise Mejia • Yvette Méndez • Cathryn Merla-Watson • R Daniel Miller • Imelda Morales • Billy What we raised! Muñoz & Amanda Silva Muñoz • Becca Najera • Russell Nye • Maria A Ojeda • Bernardita Pérez • Eliza Pérez • Jezzika Pérez • Nancy Pettersen • Patricia Portales • Laurie Posner Funds collected online $6,355 • Patti Radle • Ana Lucia Ramirez • Gloria A. Ramírez • Jo Reyes • Maria Rodríguez • Carol Rodríguez • Genevive Rodriguez • Rogelio Saenz • Mary Salazar • Rey Saldaña • Funds collected in person $1,500 Nadine Saliba • Isabel & Enrique Sanchez • Xavier & Diana Sanchez • Leticia Sánchez • Big Give 4th Place $2,500 Xavier Sánchez • Graciela Sánchez • Bernard Sánchez • Tara Schmidt • Danna Schneider Prize for MOST UNIQUE • susana segura • Aissatou Sidime-Blanton • Eugenia Silva • Cynthia Spielman • Chuck DONORS in the ARTS Squier • H. Douglas Steadman • Jennifer Stephenson • Anna Marie Stern • Sharyll category Teneyuca • Jelena Todic • Joyce Townsend • Joe Trevino • Roberto Treviño • Rita Urquijo-Ruíz • Micaela Valadez • Elvia Valdes • Amelia Valdez • Andrea Velasquez • TOTAL RAISED $10,355 Monica Velasquez • Tony Villanueva • Helen Villarreal • Dee Villarrubia • Barbara Villegas • Anne Wallace • Marsha Warren • Joan Wells • Linda Ximenes • Isabel Zambrano & all the Buena Gente who donated anonymously and continue to give.

MISSED THE BIG GIVE? We work year round, and take donations year round! Call 210.228.0201 or visit to help sustain the work of Esperanza.


• Rosalinda Garcia • Jose Hernandez, MD • Joseph P. Kennedy • Choco Leandro • Linda Libby & Pat Saliba • Ruth Lofgren • Peter Maher • Yolanda & G. Ozuna • Gary Poole • Connie & Phillip Reyes • Irma & Jose Rubio • David Stokes • Jordan Truchan • Liliana Wilson • Estella Villarreal (Lerma’s) for their general donation. Didn’t see your name? PLEASE CALL US 210.228.0201

* community meetings *

LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5•

special thanks to Stella Anaya • Danelle Crowley • Maria L. DeLeon • Olivia Eisenhauer • Horizons Fdn • Angela Garcia

Amnesty International #127 For info. call Arthur @ 210.213.5919. Bexar Co. Green Party: Call 210. 471.1791 or bcgp@ Celebration Circle meets Sun., 11am @ Say Sí, 1518 S. Alamo. Meditation: Weds @7:30pm, Friends Meeting House, 7052 Vandiver. 210.533.6767. DIGNITY SA Mass, 5:30pm, Sun. @ St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 1018 E. Grayson St | 210.340.2230 Adult Wellness Support Group of PRIDE Center meets 4th Mon., 7-9 pm @ Lions Field, 2809 Broadway. Call 210.213.5919. Energía Mía: (512) 838-3351 Fuerza Unida, 710 New Laredo Hwy. | 210.927.2294

Habitat for Humanity meets 1st Tues. for volunteers, 6pm, HFHSA Office @ 311 Probandt. LULAC Council #22198, Orgullo de SA, meets 3rd Tues. @ 6:45pm @ Papouli’s (Meeting room), 255 E. Basse Rd. To join e-mail: NOW SA Chapter meets 3rd Wed’s. For time and location check FB/ | 210. 802.9068 | Pax Christi, SA meets monthly on Saturdays. Call 210.460.8448 Proyecto Hospitalidad Liturgy meets Thurs. 7pm, 325 Courtland. Metropolitan Community Church services & Sunday school @10:30am, 611 East Myrtle. Call 210.472.3597 Overeaters Anonymous meets MWF in Spanish & daily in English | | 210.492.5400.

People’s Power Coalition meets offers free Syphilis & HIV testing | 210.225.4715 | last Thursdays | 210.878.6751 PFLAG, meets 1st Thurs. @ 7pm, University Presbyterian Church 300 Bushnell Ave. | 210.848.7407. Parents of Murdered Children, meets 2nd Mondays @ Balcones Heights Community Ctr, 107 Glenarm | www.

SA Women Will March: www.|(830) 488-7493 SGI-USA LGBT Buddhists meet 2nd Sat. at 10am @ 7142 San Pedro Ave., Ste 117 | 210.653.7755.

Shambhala Buddhist Meditation Tues. 7pm & Sun. 9:30am 257 E. Hildebrand Ave. | Rape Crisis Center 7500 US Hwy 90W. Hotline: 210.349.7273 210.222.9303. | 210.521.7273 Email: sgabriel@ S.N.A.P. (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests). Contact Barbara at The Religious Society of Friends meets Sunday @10am @ 210.725.8329. The Friends Meeting House, 7052 Voice for Animals: N. Vandiver. | 210.945.8456. 210.737.3138 or www. S.A. Gender Association meets 1st & 3rd Thursday, 6-9pm @ SA’s LGBTQA Youth meets 611 E. Myrtle, Metropolitan Tues., 6:30pm at Univ. Presby. Community Church. Church, 300 Bushnell Ave. | SA AIDS Fdn 818 E. Grayson St.

Notas Notas YY Más Más

June 2015

Brief news items on upcoming community events. Send items for Notas y Más to: or mail to: 922 San Pedro, San Antonio, TX 78212. The deadline is the 8th of each month.

La Peña Gallery in Austin & Humanities Texas presents WAKE*UP, DEAD MEN, a retrospective of Bruce Jackson’s Prison Farm Photography & Film Work, 19651975 curated by Deborah S. Esquenazi. The Opening Reception, a benefit for The Innocence Project of Texas that brings together Bruce Jackson & exonorees from around the state, takes place at La Peña, 227 Congress Ave. on June 5th, 6-8 pm. See:

tutions. Deadline: June 30. See: www. The application for the Victory Institute’s Candidate & Campaign Training in San Antonio is now open! Training will take Kopkind, the 17th annual retreat for media place July 30 to August 2. See: victoryinmakers and activists is calling for people to send letters of intent. Film camp will be held July 12-19 in Southern Vermont. For This year, Unión = Fureza Latino Instiapplications, go to www.documentaries. tute is partnering with LGBTQ organizaorg & click on Kopkind/CID Film Retreat tions and foundations in the Our TomorSeminars. Deadline is Tuesday, June 2nd. row Campaign, a nationwide survey of The political camp for journalists & activ- LGBTQ communities to assess “our hopes, ists will run from July 25 to August 2nd. dreams, and fears.” See: creatingchangeFour major exhibitions devoted to the Hu- Their deadline is Saturday, June 13. or see the survey at: manscape paintings of Chicano artist Mel Send letters to: Casas will be on view at various locations throughout San Antonio between June and The MALCS Summer Institute is on for Texas Families: Together and Safe October 2015. Getting the Big Picture: July 29th to August 1st at the University (TFTS), a child abuse prevention program Political Themes in the Art of Mel Casas, of New Mexico in Albuquerque. Hosts/ funded by the state and, in part, by DFPS 1968-1977 will be on view June 5-Oct. 24 organizers are Alma Rosa Silva-Bañuelos, offers free Child Abuse Prevention presenat The Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, Director of UNM LGBTQ Resource Ctr tations and parenting classes. Eligibility 723 S. Brazos St. Mel Casas: The South- and Rosa Isela Cervantes, Director of the criteria: Must have a child between 3-17 western Cliches, 1982-1989 runs June 11- UNM Centro de la Raza and Special Ad- years old, reside in Bexar County and have Sept. 27, 2015 at the Texas A&M Univer- visor to the President on Latino Affairs. no open or no previously substantiated CPS sity San Antonio, Centro de Artes, 101 Check: case. See: www.eiscoverbcfs/tfts S. Santa Rosa Ave. For more go to: www.

WANTED! Volunteers for the Friends of Texana, Family Name Booth at The Institute of Texan Cultures Folklife Festival, June 13-14, 2015. Work up to 2 1/2 hours and stay to enjoy the 44th annual Texas Folklife Festival with a courtesy 2-day wristband. Contact:, 210.207.2500. The Intelligence Studies Project of UTAustin announces an annual competition for the “Inman Award.” that recognizes outstanding undergraduate or graduate research/writing on topics related to intelligence and national security. The winner receives $5000: two semifinalists receive $2500 each. Open to students in 2014-15 degree programs at accredited U.S. insti-

LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5•

The Texas Size Breach Collaborative art exhibit that runs through June 14th at Texas A&M University-San Antonio Educational & Cultural Arts Center downtown at the Mercado, 101 S. Santa Rosa Ave. will offer a free print workshop with Art to the 3rd Power on Sunday, June 7th from 1-4 pm. See www.tamusa.ecac


LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5• Join us for our monthly concert series

Noche Azul de Esperanza

Homenaje a Mariá Felix pt. 2

Saturday, June 20, 2015 8PM @ Esperanza | $5

en aquellos tiempos press conference & photo banner release

Friday June 12th

Your vote is your voice!

Don’t Forget to Vote! San Antonio mayoral Run-off election! Early Voting: Mon, June 1 - Tues, June 9 Election Day: Saturday, June 13 Esperanza Peace & Justice Center

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Saturday June 13th

LA VOZ de ESPERANZA • June 2015 Vol. 28 Issue 5•

10am @ Casa de Cuentos, 816 S. Colorado


a retrospective of Liliana Wilson’s


S a t u r d a y , J u l y 1 1 th, 2 0 1 5 | 7 p m @ Esperanza Peace & Justice Center