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Winter/Invierno 2012

VENCEREMOS Chicana(o)/Latina(o) Bilingual Student Newspaper

6 El Cucuy

Celebrando la cultura a través de cuentos folklóricos Latinoamericanos

7 Art & Space

Murals and poetry connect Trax stations with their surrounding communities

8 Aprendiendo Náhuatl Curso universitario enseña lengua indígena a estudiantes en Utah

9 GED Students

Spanish speakers gather in West Jordan to fulfill education goals

10 Walk for Hope

Siblings trek across the country to draw support for the DREAM Act

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Vol. 13 No. 2 Utah, Las Americas


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Institutionalized oppression leads to tragedy bullying as “rumors” and “chatter,” Horsley minimizes and denies the lived experience of oppression. Whether he was bullied for his sexual orientation, for his ethnicity, his race, his nationality, or for any number of factors is beside the point. What is disturbing, however, is the attempt of school officials to illegitimize and dismiss the harmful effects of oppression.

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he tragic death of 14-yearold Vietnamese-American student David Phan in Taylorsville is another reminder that oppression and discrimination continues largely unchecked and even institutionalized in Utah. The statement given by Granite School District spokesman Ben Horsley illustrates the failure of schools in particular to address, or even acknowledge, the existence of oppression. While classmates and friends affirmed ongoing bullying and knew precisely the reasons for it, Horsley stated, “there appears to be ongoing rumors throughout social media and reported in the news media that the student was being bullied” and “social media chatter was that he was bullied because he was gay.” By referring to reports of the painful reality of his

suicide. The reason is that “despite specific personal inquiries, Phan never reported any further bullying concerns and on the contrary, reported that things “were going well.” They attributed his death to “other issues in his personal life” and stated that he was “facing significant personal challenges on multiple fronts.” These statements reflect the ignorance and insensitivity of those

“Sadly, unless bullying is blatantly cruel and actively reported as such, many administrators deny the effects of other more insidious types of oppression that go on everyday in schools unchallenged.” Further statements also reflect the tendency to immediately rule out oppression of any kind as a major factor in bullying or suicide. Despite the fact that “the student reported a bullying concern several years ago,” neither school officials nor counselors would admit that bullying was a factor in his

in power when forced to confront the reality of oppression. They fail to realize the difficulty of reporting bullying and the frustration of having to “justify” or “explain” why it should be considered bullying. To give an example, microaggressions that many would dismiss as harmless really cause a great deal

of harm emotionally, psychologically, and even physiologically. Sadly, unless bullying is blatantly cruel and actively reported as such, many administrators deny the effects of other more insidious types of oppression that go on everyday in schools unchallenged. Perhaps the worst aspect of the statement was the refusal on the part of school officials to take responsibility for what happened. Instead of admitting that the school’s failed policies to prevent and/or address bullying are partly to blame, Horsley stated that “our greatest security system within our schools is the eyes and ears of our students and they have a moral imperative to report unsafe behavior to a trusted adult, teacher, or administrator.” This effectively places all responsibility for identifying bullying on the students, despite the fact that it is the students themselves who are often the culprits. Adults, teachers, administrators, and students alike must acknowledge the ways in which they themselves perpetuate or are complicit with oppression and discrimination before this tragedy repeats itself again. An account has been set up in memory of David Phan under The Anti-Bullying Foundation which is dedicated to antibullying-education and outreach.

La opresion instituzionalicada lleva a la tragedia una vez mas La trágica muerte del estudiante vietnamita-americano de 14-años de edad, David Phan, en Taylorsville es otro recordatorio de que la opresión y la discriminación siguen en gran medida sin control e incluso institucionalizados en Utah. La declaración dada por el portavoz del Distrito Escolar de Granite, Ben Horsely, ilustra el fracaso de las escuelas en particular para abordar o incluso reconocer la existencia de la opresión. Mientras que sus compañeros de clase y amigos afirmaron acoso continuo y sabían con precisión las razones para ello, Horsley dijo: “Parece que hay rumores en los medios sociales y en los medios de comunicación que el estudiante estaba siendo intimidado” y “charla de medios sociales es que era intimidado por ser gay. “ Al referirse a los reportajes de la dolorosa realidad de la intimidación como “rumores” y “charla”, minimiza y niega la experiencia vivida de la opresión. Si él fue intimidado por su orientación sexual, su etnia, su raza, su nacionalidad, o por cualquier número de factores no viene al caso. Lo

inquietante es el intento de las autoridades escolares de illegitimizar y descartar a los efectos dañinos de la opresión. Otras declaraciones también reflejan la tendencia de descartar de inmediato la opresión de cualquier tipo como un factor importante en la intimidación o el suicidio. A pesar del hecho de que “el estudiante reportó una preocupación con la intimidación hace varios años,” ni las autoridades escolares ni los consejeros querían admitir que la intimidación era un factor en el suicidio. La razón

es que “a pesar de determinadas consultas personales, David nunca volvió a reportar cualquier preocupación con la intimidación y por el contrario, reportó que las cosas iban bien.” Ellos atribuyeron su muerte a “otras cuestiones en su vida personal” y afirmó que estaba “enfrentando importantes retos personales en múltiples frentes”. Estas declaraciones reflejan la ignorancia y la insensibilidad de la autoridades cuando se ven obligados a enfrentarse a la realidad de la opresión. No se dan cuenta de la dificultad de reportar la

intimidación y la frustración de tener que “justificar” o “explicar” porqué debe ser considerado intimidación. Para dar un ejemplo, los micro-agresiones que muchos descartan como inofensivos realmente causan un gran daño emocional, psicológico e incluso fisiológico. Lamentablemente, a menos que la intimidación es descaradamente cruel y reportada activamente, muchos administradores niegan los efectos de otros tipos más insidiosos de la opresión que continúan todos los días en las escuelas sin oposición.

“Lamentablemente, a menos que la intimidación es descaradamente cruel y reportada activamente, muchos administradores niegan los efectos de otros tipos más insidiosos de la opresión que continúan todos los días en las escuelas sin oposición.”

VENCEREMOS Editorial Policy: Venceremos is a bilingual Chicana/o student publication founded in 1993 and is recognized as official campus print media by the University of Utah Publications Council. Venceremos is published once every fall and spring semester. We are a free, non profit, alternative campus newspaper dedicated to representing and serving the Chicana/o community by advocating for social change and equality in its

Winter 2012

content and news production on the everyday issues that affect Chicana/o students and the working-class Chicana/o and/ or Latina/o community, as well as their struggles with racial, gender, and economic inequality. We encourage letters and contributions from our readers, but reserve the right to edit correspondence for grammar, style, clarity and length but cannot guarantee publication. Unsigned editorials represent a majority opinion of the

Venceremos staff. The views expressed in Venceremos represent the views of individual writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Utah or its Board of Regents. Contributors to Venceremos are identified as guerrilleras or guerrilleros, meaning warriors of the pen, to signify their collective efforts to use this paper as a weapon against the inequities and injustices suffered by their communities.

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Guerrilleras/os

Garrick Butler, Angelica Fierro, Jasmine Fierro, Gustavo Fontoura da Silva, Adriana Carillo Garcia, Rudy Medina, Alissa Skinner, Isaac Giron, Carlos Gomar, Amy Hernandez, Anita Juarez, Siosaia Langi, Xris Macias, Liliana I. Martinez, Jarred Martinez, Farah Melendez, Flor de Maria Olivo, Manuel Padro, Claudia Snow,

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Jasmine Fierro & Flor Olivo Jasmine Fierro, Gustavo Fontoura da Silva, Flor Olivo, Alonso Reyna y Amy Hernandez

Quizás el peor aspecto de la declaración fue el fallo por parte de funcionarios de la escuela de asumir la responsabilidad por lo sucedido. En lugar de admitir que las políticas fallidas de la escuela para prevenir y / o abordar la intimidación son en parte culpables, Horsley afirmó que “nuestro principal sistema de seguridad dentro de nuestras escuelas son los ojos y los oídos de nuestros estudiantes y ellos tienen la obligación moral de reportar el comportamiento peligroso a un adulto, maestro o administrador de confianza”. Esto efectivamente pone toda la responsabilidad de identificar la intimidación en los estudiantes a pesar de que son los propios estudiantes que son a menudo los culpables. Adultos, maestros, administradores, y estudiantes deben reconocer las formas en las que se perpetúan o son cómplices de la opresión y la discriminación antes de que se vuelva a repetir tal tragedia. Se ha abierto una cuenta en memoria de David Phan bajo La Fundación Anti-Bullying que se dedica a la educación y la divulgación en contra de la intimidación.

Ruby Chacon and Claudia Snow Sonya M. Alemán

Thanks to all the faculty, staff and community members that have advocated for this publication.


Filipino & Filipino American youth unite through activism

By / Por Emilio Manuel Camu Guerrillero

The Filipino people have historically stood against censorship, suppression, and the incessant American presence in the Philippine government. So when R.A. 10175 was enacted, groups comprised of Filipino and Filipino American youth—such as Anakbayan and the Pilipino American Student Association at the University of Utah (U) , which have a presence in both the Philippines and the United States, immediately fought against it. The act, popularly dubbed the E-Martial Law, permitted the government to convict citizens up to 14 years in federal prison for libelous statements about the government published on their personal social media accounts. Under the libel section of the act, government officials could classify any critique or mockery of their actions made by a citizen as libelous. The section is so broad that anything anyone said about the government would be suspect of crime. Infamous Congressman Tito Sotto introduced the libel section, causing many people to doubt its credibility. Sotto gained notoriety

when he was previously accused of plagiarizing American bloggers and former U.S. Senator Robert Kennedy in a speech against a controversial reproductive health bill in the country. Sotto continues to deny the accusations against him, but the public considers his actions as disreputable. R.A. 10175 is not the first time the Philippine government has tried to censor its people. In the 1970s, then President, Ferdinand Marcos declared martial law in the Philippines. The decade-long dictatorship has been blamed for the deaths and disappearances of tens of thousands of activists and community leaders who were against the dictatorship. The public regarded Marcos as a puppet political head in the Philippines, while the U.S. played puppeteer—a relationship many Filipinos see as unchanged. “Noynoying,” is a term derived from President Benigno S. Aquino’s nickname “Noynoy.” It has become a term used by the Filipino public to signify “doing nothing.” Public sentiment suggests that the Philippine president is representing another failing, corrupt administration that ignores the needs of its people. Many Filipinos suggest that his presidency has furthered the whoring out of their motherland. Even some of the leading newspapers in the Philippines, like the Philippine Inquirer, joined the protest of the law by changing many of its account pictures to solid black squares—the official image of the online protest. The Aquino administration has been accused of hundreds of human rights violations—with R.A. 10175 as the most recent abuse. The administration has been criticized for failing to improve the living conditions for the impoverished. Although the country has been striving to improve its infrastructure and strengthen

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its economy by using its status as one of the largest naval vessel manufacturing country in the world, its disregard for basic human rights and freedoms will undoubtedly lead to another People Power Revolution; a bloodless three-day revolution that overthrew the Marcos dictatorship in 1986. Filipino and Filipino-American youth have protested the legislation by blacking out their social media accounts by posting solid black images as their profile pictures and blacked out letters as their wall posts in order to display the ability the government has to censor its people. The law has led to the arrests of some community activists in the Philippines. Many FilipinoAmericans, including Filipino-American students at the U, have jokingly likened a clause in the act which states Filipinos abroad will be extradited and tried in Philippine

noticias

courts as receiving free airfare back to their homeland.

After petitions were presented to the Philippine Supreme Court by human rights groups, the AntiCybercrime Law has been suspended for 120 days, beginning October 9. Supporters of the law, including the Philippine president, have been given time to defend or revise it. The question stands: are the Filipino people ready to have another revolution should the law be deemed constituional? The answer is yes.

President Obama designates national monument for civil rights leader Cesar Chávez By Farah Melendez Guerrillera

On October 8, President Barack Obama designated Cesar Estrada Chávez’s home in Delano, California as a national monument. Dedicated to one of the greatest civil rights leaders in the United States, the monument to Chávez’s legacy as an ardent supporter of labor and human rights will be the first in the nation’s history to honor a Latino. The monument will be housed at the site of the United Farm Workers of America (UFW), the union for farmworkers that Chávez established in 1962,— headquarters. It will include the 26 existing buildings, visitor center, Chávez’s office and library, a garden, and Chávez’s burial site already located at Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz (Our Lady Queen of Peace), or La Paz in the Tehachapi Mountains of Kern County. The 187-acre site is where Chávez and his followers would meet to plan strikes that later affected the entire nation. Here is where Chávez also taught farm workers how to write contracts. Born to be a leader, César Estrada Chávez, a MexicanAmerican migrant farm worker from Yuma, Arizona faced overt discrimination and dangerous working conditions and minimal pay along with other farm workers from an early age. In

collaboration with the founder of the Industrial Areas Foundation, Frederick Ross, Chávez traveled across California and over to Texas giving speeches in support of worker’s rights. Chávez encouraged fellow Mexican Americans to demand labor laws and better pay for the farm workers who were predominantly Latino. Inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi, Chávez chose to create a strong movement without violence and raise awareness of farm workers through countless numbers of strikes beginning with boycotting grapes. Chávez has already been honored by naming his birthday on March 31 as a national holiday. Cesar Chávez day is celebrated throughout the United States including California and a reserved holiday in Colorado, Texas and Arizona. In addition, Chávez was commemorated by President Barack Obama in 2008 for his commitment to social justice. Many schools and community centers also are named after Chávez and his portrait hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. The Salt Lake City chapter of the National Council of La Raza hosts a banquet each spring in his honor. The city also redisignated 500 South as César E. Chávez Boulevard. In appreciation for his efforts and compelling story, Obama stated, “Chavez left a legacy as an educator, environmentalist and civil rights leader and we should honor him for what he’s taught us about making America stronger.” President Barack Obama reached out to the Latina/o community by commemorating the values and dreams Chávez had set forth. His life was a story of courage and sacrifice. Like many historical leaders, Chávez was not afraid to challenge injustices and his perseverance, hope, and belief in the power of unity continues to inspire.

Write. Edit. Translate. Draw. Photograph. Distribute. Create. Inform. Empower.

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2012 Venceremos Pendejo del Año Award: Republican Presidential nominee Willard “Mitt” Romney

editorial By Xris Macias Guerrillero

It is apparent that no other pendejo will emerge as great as the likes of Mr. Willard “Mitt” Romney. As a presidential hopeful for the 2012 election, this former governor of Massachusetts continuously failed to see his discourse on American politics happened to be very similar to what this nation saw in the 1950’s in regards to women’s rights, and the 1980’s in regards to well…. everything else. In 2003, Romney was a man who belonged to the Republican Party but had support from Democrats and independents, he was someone who had the potential to blur partisan lines and perhaps move the Republicans away from the far right. He was endorsed locally by our former mayor of Salt Lake City; Rocky Anderson, known as one of the most progressive politicians in the nation. He was a presidential hopeful then, with a craving for change. The Romney who emerged during this presidential race was a dramatically different candidate, a man seemingly without core principles and saying the exact opposite of his opponent, without analysis of the issue. He may have had an agenda on foreign policy

or on the state of the U.S. economy, but no one can single-handedly change those. Rather, change results from efforts that occur collectively. As an American businessman of the very wealthy 1%, Romney is a trained capitalist that only seeks the interests of those in his financial class. Not once in any debate or speech before the election did he state the words “community building.” Needless to say, he never came close to uttering the words, “social justice.” Venceremos selects a recipient of the Pendejo Del Año to someone that does not represent the greater interest of La Raza. Romney’s fear of immigrants creating families and his stance to end birth-right citizenship to children of immigrants exemplify this trait. His resistance to affirmative action also hinders our communities. Furthermore, the Pendejo Del Año recognition is also given to someone who has

Romney gana el premio del Pendejo del Año

Por Xris Macias Guerrillero

Esta claro que no surgirá otro Pendejo mas grande este año como Willard Mitt Romney. Como candidato presidencial en las elecciones del 2012, este pasado gobernador del estado de Massachusetts, fallo en varios aspectos desde un principio. Sus discurso eran bastante parecidos a aquellos de los años 1950 cuando se trataba de derechos de mujeres, y con parecido a los años 1980 cuando hablaba de póliza extranjera. En punto, sus conversaciones eran las mismas de años pasados. En el 2003, Romney era miembro del partido Republicano con apoyo del partido Democrático y de independientes. Era una persona con el potencial de borrar líneas de partidos políticos y quizás ayudar a remover el partido Republicano de la derecha extrema. Fue patrocinado en un tiempo por el mayordomo de Salt Lake City, Rocky Anderson, quien fue considerado como una de los políticos mas progresistas de la nación. Antes Romney tenia ganas de cambio. El candidato que surgió durante esta ultima elección fue drásticamente diferente al que vimos en años pasados. Es un hombre, que al parecer, esta sin principios y que nada mas dice lo opuesto de sus competidores sin análisis alguno. El tenia plan sobre como cambiar la economía, o como mejorar las pólizas extranjeras, pero esto no se cambia con una sola persona, en cambio, estas cosas ocurren colectivamente. Como un negociante Americano, Romney, esta entrenado a ser capitalista que solo va detrás de los intereses de los que están un su misma clase económica. Nunca se le escucho decir en ningún debate o discurso las palabras “comunidad” o mucho menos las palabras “Justicia Social.” Venceremos le presenta el premio del Pendejo Del Año, a una persona que no representa el mayor interés de nuestras comunidades. Romney teme que los inmigrantes creen familias en

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este país, tenia la estancia de terminar con derechos ciudadanos a hijos de inmigrantes nacidos aquí. También resiste a las ideas de acción afirmativa, que muchas veces ayudan a nuestras comunidades. Mas aparte, el Pendejo del Año es presentado a alguien quien no ha demostrado compromiso al progreso de nuestra gente. Las veces que Romney ha cambiado de opinión son mas de las que podemos contar. Por ejemplo, el estuvo a favor de prohibir armas de asalto, pero después apoyo legislación para no controlar armas. En un tiempo dijo que podía apoyar los derechos para el matrimonio del mismo sexo, pero en esta ultima elección dijo que no soportaría esto. Dijo también que apoyaba el estimulo de la economía y después le dio la espalda. Romney ha tenido mas cambios de discurso que cualquier otro candidato en la carrera presidencial del 2012. Si un hombre es capaz de transformarse una y otra vez para ganarse una posición de poder, quien sabe que hubiera hecho para mantenerlo. Como líder del partido Republicano, Romney fallo en reconocer las necesidades de las comunidades diversas que están emergiendo, creando las nuevas Americas. Como estuvo que el fue nominado y que creo un carrera tan cerca, es algo que no comprendemos en Venceremos. Tuvimos esperanza en la gente de este país, de este estado, y de esta era, que vieran la verdad. No patrocinamos oficialmente a ningún candidato lo político, sabemos cuando hay uno incorrecto. Aunque no salio con éxito, Romney dividió a la nación con su retórica de explotación y división, no creemos que esto es un legado del cual puede estar orgulloso. Últimamente, el Pendejo Del Año es un llamado a tomar acción en nuestras comunidades; el mejorar de nuestras comunidad depende de nosotros. La lucha no para porque se terminaron las elecciones. Si hay injusticia, luchemos… Juntos Venceremos!

not shown integrity and commitment to forward thinking. The many flip-flops Romney demonstrated these past years illustrate his lack of principled convictions. For instance, Romney supported a ban on assault weapons, and then made a commitment not to support any gun control legislation. He announced that he a was a supporter of gay rights, and then claimed to oppose gay marriage. He supported stimulus spending and bailouts, and then turned against them. In fact, Romney had the most position changes than any other candidate in the 2012 presidential election. And if a man is willing to transform over and over to gain a position of power, who knows what ends he would’ve gone to to keep it. As a leader for the Republican Party, Romney failed to cater to the needs of the many diverse communities that are emerging and creating the new America. How he managed to earn the nomination and create a close race is beyond Venceremos. We held hope in the people of this country, this state, and this era would see beyond the show he put on. While we do not officially endorse a political party or politico, we recognize when there is a wrong one. Though he did not come out successful in the end, Romney drove a wedge in our nation, exploiting and increasing divisions with his misguided rhetoric. We do not believe that is a legacy to be proud of. Ultimately, the Pendejo del Año is a call to action to our communities; improving and transforming our nation and communities will depend on all of us. The struggle does not stop because the presidential election is over. If you see wrong, stand up against it. ¡Juntos Venceremos!

Buscando conciencia en las palabras que usamos Por Carlos Gomar Guerrillero No hace mucho tiempo, un profesor de sociología nos asigno a mis compañeros y a mi leer un libro que hablaba sobre las malas condiciones de trabajo de los inmigrantes indocumentados que trabajaban en los campos de fresa en California. Durante los siguientes clases discutimos el libro, “Reefer Madness” de Eric Schlosser, y otros asuntos relacionados con la inmigración y el trabajo. Aunque la mayoría de los estudiantes que participaron en la discusión parecían entender las razones qué hay inmigrantes que trabajan en condiciones pobres, las palabras que algunos de mis compañeros utilizaron para identificar aquellos laborando en los campos me hicieron sentir inquieto. “Los inmigrantes ilegales tienen dificultades por el hecho de ser ilegales,” dijo un estudiante. “Debido a que no son ciudadanos, no tienen los mismos derechos que los trabajadores tendría normalmente.” Al oír sus palabras, no pude dejar de editar sus comentarios. “Los inmigrantes indocumentados ilegales tienen dificultades por el hecho de ser ilegales indocumentados,” pensé después de escuchar la palabra deshumanizante. Consciente de cómo las palabras del estudiante habían provocado una reacción inmediata en mí, me asombre de lo fácil que era para un individuo llamar a otro un “extranjero” (alien en ingles que se traduce a extraterrestre) o “ilegal.” Aunque es posible que el estudiante Anglo no significó ningún daño en el uso de sus palabras, el mismo uso de estas palabras no hizo más que aumentar la aceptación de la palabra en nuestra sociedad. Al mismo tiempo descuido cómo una palabra puede oprimir a las personas marginadas. Ningún ser humano es ilegal tal como ningún ser humano es un extraterrestre (alien). Tristemente, las palabras que están cargadas con

el poder para oprimir se utilizan más a menudo de lo que muchos de nosotros pensamos. “Estoy a favor de los derechos de los homosexuales y el matrimonio gay,” escucho a la gente decir. Pero, ¿qué, me pregunto, hace que un matrimonio gay? ¿Qué hace que un derecho sea gay? ¿Son los derecho que actualmente se le niegan a las personas homosexuales simplemente no derechos humanos? ¿No es lo un matrimonio la misma cosa que une a una pareja, independientemente de su sexo? Nunca oímos acerca de los derechos matrimoniales heterosexual, ¿por qué entonces, debemos hacer una excepción? El matrimonio es el matrimonio, y los derechos son derechos humanos. Sí, nuestro gobierno federal actualmente define el matrimonio entre un hombre y una mujer, pero un matrimonio entre una pareja del mismo sexo es tan legítimo como uno entre una pareja heterosexual y debe verse de esa forma legalmente. ¿Cómo, entonces, podemos llegar a ser más conscientes de nuestras palabras? Una forma de hacerlo es preguntarnos quiénes son los beneficiarios de la terminologías a largo plazo, y por qué. Al hacer estas preguntas podemos llegar a ser más conscientes de las luchas que enfrentan los individuos dentro de nuestras propias comunidades. Y también ser más conscientes de cómo son los demás nos oprimidos y como nosotros oprimimos a otros. Es por esta conciencia que podemos llegar a ser más conscientes de las palabras racistas, sexistas, homofóbicos y heterosexista que oprimen a nuestras comunidades y se encuentran a menudo en nuestras escuelas, la legislación y las conversaciones cotidianas. Más importante aún, es que a través de este tipo de conciencia podemos dejar de usar términos como «ilegal» o «matrimonio gay» mientras ayudamos a otros a entender los impactos tales palabras.


The impact of legalizing marijuana on communities of color

Electoral victories in Colorado and Washington make analysis on the effects of prohibition a hot issue By/Por Isaac Giron Guerrillero

Regulating and taxing the use of marijuana has been a hot-button issue dismissed for decades, until this recent election cycle. With the slogan, “Regulate marijuana like alcohol” the supporters of Colorado’s Proposition 64 won a legislative victory for advocates who want to regulate and tax marijuana. Washington also passed Initiative 502, which legalizes and taxes marijuana. Seventeen other states have similarly legalized medicinal use of marijuana, and seven other states are currently seeking to pass decriminalization laws. The preponderance of this legislation at the state level is a huge victory for the marijuana reform movement. While there may be an economic advantages for states that are adopting laws that decriminalize marijuana, significant beneficiaries of the move to legalize marijuana are black and brown communities, who have been incarcerated at rates disproportionate to their population for the past four decades. The criminalization and strong arm persecution of marijuana is an integral part of the failed “War on Drugs” started in the 1970’s. While proclaiming that the “War on Drugs”

Either we are home to the most evil people on earth or we are doing something different — and vastly counterproductive. would end the flow of drugs onto our streets, the actual outcomes of this war has shown it to be a failure. For 40 years, the United States has spent over a trillion dollars on the war on drugs. Since its inception, the drug war has not been able to stop the flow of drugs to the United States and it has only slowed the consumption minimally, according the 2011 report by the Global Commission on Drug Policy. One thing that the war on drugs has affected are the levels of incarceration in

the United States. According to statistics taken from the Bureau of Justice report in December of 2011, when President Nixon declared war on drugs on June 17, 1971, about 110 people our of every 100,000 in the population were incarcerated. Today, we have 2.3 million prisoners:; 743 people per 100,000 in the population. The U.S. has five percent of the world’s population, but 25 percent of its prisoners. Senator Jim Webb said, “Either we are home to the most evil people on earth or we are doing something different—and

Impacto de la legalizacion del cannabis en las comunidades de color

La regulación de la marihuana con tarifas e impuestos ha sido un tema candente por décadas, aun en este ciclo electoral reciente. Con el lema, “regula la marihuana como el alcohol”, los partidarios de la Propuesta 64 en Colorado obtuvieron una victoria legislativa para los que quieren regular el uso de tal. El estado de Washington también aprobó la Iniciativa 502, que legaliza el uso de la marihuana. Diecisiete estados han legalizado el uso medicinal de manera similar, y otros siete estados están tratando de aprobar también leyes de despenalización. La preponderancia de esta legislación a nivel estatal es una gran victoria para el movimiento de reforma de la marihuana. Hay ventajas económicas para los estados que están adoptando leyes que despenalizan el uso de la marihuana. Muchos de los que se verán afectados por el movimiento de legalización son las comunidades Afro Americanas y Latinas, que han sido encarcelados por cargos relacionados con el uso y distribución de la substancia, en tasas desproporcionadas con las comunidades blancas, durante las últimas cuatro décadas. La criminalización y persecución de “mano dura” encontra la marihuana ha sido parte integrada por la fallida “guerra contra las drogas” que se inició en los 1970s. Mientras que se proclamaba que la “guerra contra las drogas” pondría fin al flujo de drogas en nuestras calles, los resultados reales de esta guerra han demostrado ser un fracaso. En los ultimos 40 años, los EE.UU. ha gastado más de un trillón de dólares en la guerra contra las drogas. Desde su creación, la misma no ha sido capaz de detener el flujo de drogas hacia los Estados Unidos y sólo ha frenado el consumo mínimo, según un estudio en 2011 por la Global Commission on Drug Policy. Una cosa que la guerra contra las drogas ha afectado son los niveles de encarcelamiento en los Estados Unidos. Cuando el presidente Nixon declaró dicha guerra, el 17 de junio de 1971, alrededor de 110 personas por cada 100,000 en la población fueron encarcelados. Hoy en día, contamos con 2.3 millones de presos: 743 por cada 100,000 personas en la población. Los EE.UU. tiene el 5% de la población mundial, pero el 25% de sus prisioneros. Esto de acuerdo con estadísticas tomadas por el Bureau of Justice el ano pasado. Como el senador Jim Webb dijo una vez: “O somos el hogar de las personas más malvadas de la tierra o estamos haciendo algo diferente y muy contra productivo.” Los EE.UU. encarcela a más personas por delitos de drogas hoy que por delitos combinados antes de la guerra contra las drogas. “Es mucho más allá de lo que cualquier otro país ha hecho y más allá de cualquier otra civilización en la historia de la humanidad,” dice el Dr. Josiah Rich, profesor de medicina en la Universidad de Brown. La disparidad racial en las tasas de encarcelamiento es asombrosa. Los Afro Americanos y Latinos son 57 veces más propensos que cualquier otro grupo de ser encarcelados por delitos relacionados con las drogas, pero sólo representan el 15.4% de los consumidores de drogas detenidos. Los gringos constituyen el 83.5% de los acusados de violación de drogas, pero una persona blanca tiene menos probabilidades de ir a la cárcel. Esto es simplemente otra ejemplo donde la guerra contra las drogas en combinación con nuestro sistema de justicia penal ha fracasado miserablemente. Este es un ataque flagrante contra la gente de color. Especialmente a la comunidad Afro Americana. La tasa de encarcelamiento por delitos de drogas es 10 veces mayor en los Afro-Americanos que en los blancos, a pesar de que el consumo de drogas y las tasas relativas son iguales o incluso superiores por los blancos. Más estadounidenses Afro-Americanos hoy están bajo supervisión de la justicia penal que los que fueron esclavizados 10 años antes de la Guerra Civil, de acuerdo con Michelle Alexander, autora de The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. Estas son algunas de las razones que la aprobación de la I-502 en Washington y la Proposición 64 son tan monumentales para Estados Unidos y para las comunidades de color. El apoyo a esta legislación indica que grandes segmentos de la población estadounidense cree que la prohibición de la marihuana es política inútil y perjudicial que debe terminar. Las comunidades de color también deben considerar cómo este movimiento puede detener o revertir los efectos devastadores que esta política ha tenido en nuestras comunidades encarcelando padres, hermanos, votantes, trabajadores, soñadores, innovadores y líderes. Legalizar la marihuana puede comenzar a revertir los efectos negativos de la guerra contra las drogas en las vidas de millones de hombres, mujeres, latinas / os, afro-americana/os, y todos los estadounidenses de una manera muy real.

vastly counterproductive.” The U.S. incarcerates more people for drug offenses today than it did for all offenses combined before the drug war. “It’s far beyond anything any other country has done and beyond any other civilization in the history of mankind,” says Dr. Josiah Rich, a professor of medicine at Brown University. In particular, the racial disparity in incarceration rates are astounding. Blacks and Latinos are 57 times more likely than any other group to be incarcerated for crimes involving drugs, but they only make up 15.4 percent of drug users arrested. Whites make up 83.5 percent of those charged with drug violation, but a white person is less likely to go to jail. This is simply another clear area where the war on drugs combined with our criminal justice system has failed miserably. This is a blatant attack on people of color, especially black communities. The rate of incarceration for drug crimes is 10 times higher for blacks than whites, even though drug use and dealing rates are the same or even higher for whites. More African Americans today are under criminal justice supervision than were enslaved 10 years before the Civil War, according to Michelle

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opinion Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. These are some of the reasons that the passing of both I-502 in Washington and Prop. 64 is so monumental for the United States and communities of color. The support for this legislation indicates that large segments of the American people believe marijuana prohibition to be a wasteful and damaging policy that must end. Communities of color should also consider how this move can halt or reverse the devastating effects this policy has had on our communities by denying us fathers, brothers, voters, workers, dreamers, innovators, or leaders. Legalizing marijuana can began to reverse the negative effects of the war on drugs has had in the lives of Latinas/os, African Americans, and Americans.

Oppression & consciousness:

The power of words By Carlos Gomar

words that are charged with the power Guerrillero to oppress are used more often than Not too long ago, a professor of many of us think. sociology assigned my classmates “I support gay marriage and gay and I to read a book giving insight rights,” I often hear people say. But to the poor working conditions of what exactly, I ask, makes a marriage undocumented immigrants laboring gay? What makes a right gay? Are the in the strawberry fields of California. right’s currently denied to homosexual During the following class periods, individuals simply not human rights? my classmates and I Is a marriage not the same binding discussed the force regardless of the book “Reefer sexes of those Madness” who are bound? by Eric We never hear about Schlosser, and straight marriage or issues relating straight rights, why to immigration then, should we make an and labor. Though the exception? majority of Marriage How can we become more conscious of our the students is marriage, words? By asking ourselves who the term and rights are who spoke in class seemed benefits, who the term oppresses, and why. human rights. to understand Yes, our federal why immigrants would labor in government currently defines such poor conditions, the choice of marriage between a man and a words that some of my classmates woman, but a marriage between a used to identify those laboring in the same-sex couple is just as legitimate strawberry fields was unsettling. as one between a heterosexual couple “Illegal immigrants have it hard and should appear that way legally. because of the fact that they are How then, can we become more illegal,” said a student. “Because conscious of our words? A way of they aren’t citizens, they don’t have doing this is by asking ourselves the same rights that workers would who the term benefits, who the normally have.” term oppresses, and why. By asking   Upon hearing his words, I couldn’t such questions we can become help but to mentally edit his remarks. more conscious of the struggles of “Illegal Undocumented immigrants others within own communities and have it hard because of the fact that become more conscious of how they are illegal undocumented,” I thought. we are oppressed or oppress. It is Conscious of how the student’s by this consciousness that we can words had triggered an immediate become more conscious of racist, reaction in me, I was awestruck at sexist, ageist, homophobic, and how easy it was for an individual heterosexist words that oppress our to call someone an “alien” or communities and are found in our “illegal.” While it is possible that schools, legislation and everyday the Anglo student meant no harm conversations. More importantly, it in using the words that he did, his is through this consciousness that use of the words only perpetuated we can stop using terms like “illegal” the acceptance of the word in our or “gay marriage” and help others society and neglected how such a understand the underlying impacts of word oppresses and marginalizes such words. individuals. No human is illegal as much as no human is an alien. Sadly, Invierno 2012


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culture

By / Por Gustavo Fontoura da Silva Guerrillero

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efore Facebook, television and radio, people gathered around campfires to tell the stories that are still live today. For instance, the indigenous people of Latin America used the oral tradition of storytelling to create many stories, fables and legends, which later became infused with many cultures. European and Afro-centric beliefs, stories and customs became a part of a mythology that is uniquely Latin American. Of all the legends, the story of La Llorona is perhaps the most well known. With origins in pre-colonial Mexico, it’s the story of a young indigenous woman named La Malinche, who along with twenty other women, was given to the Spanish conquistadors. La Malinche’s ability to quickly learn Spanish caught the attention of conquistador Hernán Cortés where she served him as an interpreter. After some time, Cortés and La Malinche’s relationship became romantic and she gave birth to two sons. Fearing that Cortés was beginning to build his own empire, the King and Queen of Spain demanded he return with the children and leave La Malinche behind. Feeling betrayed, La Malinche murdered her two sons on the banks of a lake the day before Cortés was to leave for Spain. Twenty years after her death, people began seeing visions of La Malinche dressed in a white dress and veil weeping for her sons. The story of La Malincha has evolved into La Llorona, or the crying woman. Many believe that La Llorona still wanders near water sources, wailing “ay, mis hijos!” Some legends in Latin America were created for no other reason than to scare children. El Cuco or Cucuy is a very popular legend that is equivalent to the boogeyman. El Cuco is a monster that doesn’t have a specific appearance and is used mostly by parents and grandparents to scare children who are disobedient. El Hombre del Saco is the tale of an old, evil man who carries a large sack slung over his shoulder. He wanders the streets at night looking for children who have not returned home before dark. Once he finds a naughty child, he puts them in his sack where they are never seen again. Many stories describe mythological animals. El Chupacabra, popular in Mexico and Puerto Rico, is believed to be a monster or alien that kills and sucks the blood of livestock, mainly goats. Los Cadejos, a widespread legend in many Central America countries, is a folktale of a white or black dog that appears to travelers in the night. The good white Cadejo is believed to protect the traveler during the journey while the evil black Cadejo will bring harm and is said to steal your soul. El Alicanto is a mythological bird that lives in the deserts of Chile. Legend says that the bird has eyes that emit vibrant lights and its wings shine during the night with beautiful metallic colors. It is believed

Winter 2012

Myths & legends of Latin America that if you are able to follow El Alicanto without being seen you will be guided to silver and gold. If caught, the bird will lead you off a cliff. Several folktales involve harmless tricksters called duendes. Sacipererê, is Brazil’s most popular mythical character. He is a mischievous, onelegged youngster with skin as black as coal. He smokes a large pipe and wears a red pointed hat. He can appear and disappear at will and loves to play pranks like blowing out campfires and scaring cattle. It is said that if you capture his hat, he will grant you a wish. El Cipitío from El Salvador is a young large-bellied boy who wears a big hat. He appears at night laughing, teasing and dancing around his victims and is known for throwing pebbles at beautiful girls who wash clothes in the rivers. Many stories tell accounts of the protectors of natural environments. El Tunchi, a spirit that haunts the Peruvian rainforest, is known to whistle a certain tune and if you answer by whistling the same tune, he will appear. If you respect the flora or fauna, he will simply scare

you and move on. However, if you disrespect the forest, he will unleash his wrath. Locals advise not to answer the whistle in order to prevent El Tunchi from playing with you. Curupira, from Brazil is a young boy with flaming red hair and green teeth that rides a wild boar. His most distinctive characteristic is that his feet are turned backwards to avoid trackers. He happily tolerates those who hunt for food, but becomes furious by those who hunt for pleasure. He lays traps so that hunters become lost in the forest forever. Some folktales blend religion and legend into one to create folk saints. Gauchito Gil from Argentina was known as a good-hearted outlaw who stole from the rich to give to the poor. There is no historical record of Gauchito Gil and many do not know if he even existed, yet he is still regarded as the most prominent saint in Argentina. Santa Muerte is a Mexican folk saint who personifies death. She is a skeleton figure that is outfitted with a sickle and wears a shroud. She is usually shown holding a set of scales that

symbolize her ability to deliver justice, a globe that implies her global dominion and an owl perched at her feet, which signifies death in Aztec culture. Although the Catholic Church has attacked the belief of these and other folk saints as pagan rituals, many people consider them to be an important part of their faith. Adriana Iris Boatwright, a Latina blogger from Savannah, Georgia says that these stories are a necessity because “they help us recapture the imagination that we had lost as children. These stories are unique and live within us forever.” Many of these legends are older than the written word. These are stories that don’t have an individual author; but instead are stories that are crafted and owned by the community. These legends blend many cultures from around the world and are perpetuated by individuals who have made Latin America their home. While the warmth of the campfire may have been replaced by the glow of the computer, these stories will continue to ignite future imaginations.

Lendas e histórias de América Latina

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ntes do Facebook, televisão e rádio, nós nos comunicavamos de forma muito diferente. Nossos ancestrais se runiam em volta de fogueiras para contar histórias que ensinaram muitas das línguas, idéias, música e histórias que ainda estão presents até hoje. Assim como os povos da América Latina, os mitos e as lendas são uma infusão de muitas culturas. Os povos indígenas da América Latina usaram a tradição oral de contar histórias. Os europeus mais tarde trouxeram com eles suas próprias crenças e histórias. Africanos trouxeram crenças e costumes que vieram com o comércio de escravos. A mistura de culturas e idéias, criou lendas e mitos que são exclusivamente latino-americanos. De todas as lendas, a história de “La Llorona” é talvez a mais conhecida e tem suas origens na pré-colonia do México. É a história de uma jovem indígena chamado La Malinche, que, juntamente com 20 outras mulheres foram dadas aos conquistadores espanhóis. A capacidade de La Malinche para aprender rápidamente chamou a atenção do conquistador espanhol Hernán Cortés para quem ela serviu como intérprete. Depois de algum tempo, a relação Cortés e La Malinche tornou-se romântica e ela deu à luz a dois filhos. Temendo que Cortés estivesse começando a construir o seu próprio império, o rei e a rainha da Espanha exigiram que ele retornasse com as crianças e deixasse para trás La Malinche. Sentindo-se traída, La Malinche assassinou seus dois filhos nas margens de um lago no dia anterior que Cortes deveria voltar para a Espanha. Vinte anos depois de sua morte, as pessoas começaram a ter visões de La Malinche vestida com um vestido branco e um véu chorando por seus filhos. A história de La Malinche evoluiu em “La Llorona”, ou A chorona, e hoje muitos ainda acreditam que La Llorona perambula perto de fontes de água, lamentando “Oh, meus filhos!” Algumas lendas na América Latina foram criados para assustar as crianças. El Cuco ou Cucuy é uma lenda muito popular, que é o equivalente ao bichopapão, no Brasil. O cuco é um monstro que não tem uma aparência específica e é usado principalmente por pais e avós para assustar as crianças que são desobedientes. O Velho do Saco é o conto de um homem velho e mau que carrega um grande saco a tiracolo. Ele vagueia pelas ruas à noite a procura de crianças que não voltaram para casa antes de escurecer. Quando ele encontra uma criança desobediente, coloca em seu saco onde eles nunca mais serao vistos. Muitas destas lendas assumem a forma de animais mitológicos. El Chupacabra, popular no México e em Porto Rico, acredita-se ser um monstro ou alienígena que mata e suga o sangue de animais, principalmente cabras. Os Cadejos, uma lenda disseminada em muitos países da América Central, é um conto popular de um cão branco ou preto que aparece para viajantes durante a noite. O Cadejo branco acredita-se que é para proteger o viajante, enquanto o Cadejo preto é mau e certamente vai trazer prejuízos e pode até mesmo roubar sua alma. O Alicanto, é um pássaro mitológico que vive nos desertos do Chile. A lenda diz que o pássaro tem olhos que emitem luzes vibrantes e suas asas com belas cores metálicas brilham durante a noite. Acredita-se que se você é capaz de seguir sem ser visto pelo Alicanto você encontrara ouro e

prata. Se for pego, o pássaro vai levar você a um penhasco. Vários desses contos envolvem trapaceiros inofensivos chamados duendes. Saci-Pererê, no Brasil é o personagem mais popular. Ele é jóvem brincalhão, com uma perna só e a pele negra como carvão. Ele fuma um cachimbo e usa uma touca vermelha. Ele pode aparecer e desaparecer à vontade e gosta de fazer malcriação como soprar fogueiras e assustar o gado. Diz-se que se você é capaz de pegar sua touca ele lhe concede um desejo. O Cipitío de El Salvador é um jovem rapaz que usa um chapéu grande e tem uma barriga grande. Ele aparece à noite, rindo, brincando e dançando em torno de suas vítimas. Ele é conhecido por atirar pedras contra meninas bonitas que lavam roupas nos rios. Muitas dessas histórias falam de pessoas que são protetores do meio ambiente. O Tunchi, é um espírito que assombra a floresta tropical peruana que é conhecido por assobiar uma melodia e se você responder assobiando a mesma melodia ele vai aparecer. Se você é respeitoso, não prejudicando a flora ou fauna, ele vai simplesmente assustá-lo e seguir em frente. No entanto, se você é desrespeitoso com a floresta ele vai descarregar a sua ira. O conselho dado pelos moradores é a de não responder ao assobio, não dando uma chance para o jogo de Tunchi com você. Curupira, do Brasil é um rapaz com cabelo vermelho flamejante e dentes verdes que monta um javali. Sua característica mais distinta é que seus pés estão virados para trás para evitar ser perseguido. Felizmente ele tolera aqueles que caçam para se alimentar, mas fica furioso com aqueles que caçam por prazer e coloca armadilhas para que eles se percam para sempre na floresta. Alguns contos sao mistura de religião para criar santos populares. Gauchito Gil, da Argentina era conhecido como um bandido de bom coração que roubava dos ricos para dar aos pobres. Não há registro histórico de Gauchito Gil e muitos nem sabem se ele existiu, mas ele ainda é considerado o santo mais importante da Argentina. Santa Muerte é uma santa popular mexicana que personifica a morte. Ela é uma figura de esqueleto que segura uma foice e veste uma mortalha. Ela segura uma balança que simboliza sua capacidade de fazer justiça no mundo, um globo que implica o seu domínio e uma coruja empoleirada em seus pés, o que significa a morte na cultura asteca. Embora a Igreja Católica tenha atacado a crença destes e de outros santos populares como rituais pagãos porém muitas pessoas consideram que eles sejam uma parte importante de sua fé. Há uma necessidade em nossas vidas por mitos e lendas. Adriana Iris Boatwright, Latina blogueira de Savannah, Geórgia diz que essas histórias são importantes porque “Elas nos ajudam a recuperar a imaginação que tínhamos perdido quando crianças. Estas histórias são únicas e vivem dentro de nos para sempre.” Muitas dessas lendas são mais velhas do que a palavra escrita. São histórias simples que não têm um autor, pertence à comunidade. Essas lendas são uma mistura de muitas culturas que vieram do mundo inteiro para América Latina. Enquanto o calor da fogueira pode ter sido substituído pelo brilho do computador, as histórias vao continuar a inflamar a imaginação e as gerações futuras as herdarão.


Building Utah through art By Jarred Martinez Guerrillero

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elcome to the West-side/This is my home.” This excerpt from a poem by Olin Bernal Villalpando, will soon accompany a collage of colors, sounds, and smells, interwoven with poems and voices, tattooed in between glass canvases, with ink dropped and stroked from palettes that mirror rainbows, mountains, hope, everyday faces and growth. Salt Lake continues changing and stretching. The words above are my impression of a new artistic contribution that will be installed at the 800 W. North Temple. The TRAX station in Rose Park will soon be an operational part of the expanded TRAX line that will connect riders to the SLC airport. For those of us who are familiar with or call this part of the West-side home, it’s no surprise that in mainstream media it is often framed based on fear and dissociated with beautiful things or people. However artistically, there are numerous murals draped on the sides of buildings (Bridges Over Barriers, Quetzal Imports, Sorenson Unity Center, to name a few), some have been there for many years now, which help tell a much more rich and complete truth.Yet a simple search of the word mural in any major local newspaper archive turns up relatively few images or stories in general, and only recently does anything exist regarding some of the beautiful artwork in Rose Park. Ruby Chacon, local Chicana artist who oversaw the creation of this TRAX mural project, shared with us her insight about the ideas and process underneath the paint and brush strokes. “The process was working with Mestizo Arts and Activism’s (MAA) youth researchers, and they kind of created and informed the questions then created a survey. We also set up focus groups and gathered 500+ responses to the questions. With the artist apprentices, we categorized all the responses and created a pie on different themes of what people were asking about, so we knew what were the most important things for the community.” Creativity and art don’t always come with lightning bolt-strikes of inspiration. In a complex project like this, being able to build with community and organize ideas is just as important as artistic ability. Eduardo

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cultura of the community input was about everyday people Zaragoza, currently a student at the University of doing everyday things. “You know you see someone Utah, was, at the time one of the youth researchers raking leaves during the Fall time. Community being participating in MAA. He helped gather data and able to relate,” she said. talk with the local community about their ideas These collective voices and thoughts were the seeds for the murals. Zaragoza says, “I worked with four for all the work that will be on display, including three other [youth] researchers. We walked around the large murals, neighborhood, original door to door, poetry by asking their community opinions. I members, and remember additional some lady was paintings. like ‘oh this Chacon is really cool adds, “the you guys are overarching looking for theme was our input.’” past, present In speaking and future. about why One [mural] murals like this was in the are important arts, one for the was with community, education and Chacon Trabajadores de GMAC instalan el arte. Workers from GMAC install art panels. experience, relates to her and the other one was working together building Utah.” own growth as a person and artist; “I always felt like If Rose Park is where you call home or where you I wanted to use my art in a way to speak to my own community.” Chacon’s message to a very diverse Rose work, while you’re waiting for the train, take a moment to sink into the fresh paint. Whether it is in the hue of Park is one of validation, history, knowledge, and brown faces, in the acts of dancing and singing, the roots. This intention reflects Chacon’s early artistic smell or memory of a grandmother’s story, Chacon influences from the Mexican Muralist Movement of and the artists threaded together these ideas and voices the 1920’s, when artists such as Rivera and Siquerios in paint with the purpose of “envisioning the future.” painted with powerful and political purposes of reIn Chacon’s words, “That’s the whole purpose of it, claiming, and humanizing the identities of everyday and indigenous people. Zaragoza highlights that much creating a sense of belonging.”

Construyendo Utah por medio del arte

la comunidad local sobre ideas para los murales. Zaragoza dice, “Yo trabaje con cuatro jóvenes. Nosotros caminamos por el vecindario, de puerta en puerta, pidiendo opiniones. comunidad mucho corecta. Pero, una simple búsqueda Recuerdo que una señora dijo, ‘esto ee realmente genial que Por Jarred Martinez ustedes estén buscando nuestra opinión.’” de la palabra “mural” en unos de los periódicos Guerrillero Hablando acerca de la importancia de murales como ienvenido a el lado oeste/Este es mi hogar.” locales mas conocidos, se encuentran pocas imágenes este para la comunidad, Chacón se relaciona con su propio Esta frase de un poema por Olin Bernal o historias en general. Ademas, hasta recientemente, crecimiento como persona y como artista. “Siempre Villalpando, pronto acompañará un montaje casi ningun reconocimiento existía con respecto a las quise usar mi arte como un medio para hablarle a mi de colores, sonidos y olores, entre tejidos con poemas y hermosas obras de arte en Rose Park. comunidad.” El mensaje de Chacón a Rose Park, es uno voces, tatuados entre lienzos de vidrio, con tinta que cae y Ruby Chacón, la artista Chicana local que supervisó de validación, historia, conocimiento y las celebracion de acaricia las paletas que se parecen un arco irises, montañas, la creación de este proyecto mural en la estación diversas raíces. Esta intención refleja las influencias artísticas a demuestran la esperanza, de TRAX, comparte una que Chacón recibió del Movimiento Muralista Mexicano las caras de gente usual y el perspectiva detallada sobre las crecimiento de la ciudad. ideas y el proceso de los trazos de la década de 1920, cuando artistas como Diego Rivera y Salt Lake sigue de pintura y pincel. “El proceso David Siquerios. Los cuales pintaban con fines políticos y con el propósito de re-afirmar y humanizar las identidades cambiando. Las palabras era trabajar con los jóvenes de la gente común e indígenas. Zargoza destaca que anteriores son mi de Mestizo Arts and Activism gran parte de la opinión de la comunidad era de la gente impresión de una nueva (Mestizo Arte y Activismo), común haciendo cosas cotidianas: “Usted sabe, como ver a contribución artística y ellos crearon las preguntas alguien rastrillar las hojas durante la época de otoño. Que la que se instalará en la y crearon una encuesta. comunidad pudiera relacionarse.” estación de TRAX en También creamos grupos Estas voces colectivas e imágenes son las semillas de los 800 W. North Temple en de discusión y reunimos tres murales más grandes, incluyendo las otras pinturas que Rose Park, que pronto 500 o mas respuestas a las será parte de la línea preguntas. Con los aprendices también estarán en exhibición. Chacón continúa diciendo operativa de TRAX. La de arte, categorizamos todos que, “el tema principal era el pasado, presente y futuro. Un mural fue específicamente en las artes, uno es nueva linea se conectara Ruby Chacon supervisa la instalacion. las respuestas y creamos sobre la educación y la experiencia, y el otro es sobre el con el aeropuerto de Salt Ruby Chacon oversees installation process. una grafica sobre diferentes temas en lo que la Lake City. Para aquellos gente había preguntado. Así supimos lo que mas le trabajar juntos para construir Utah.” Si Rose Park es su hogar, o donde usted espera el de nosotros que estamos familiarizados o vivimos en importaba a la comunidad.” tren, tome un momento para inundarse en la pintura esta parte de la ciudad, no es una sorpresa que en los La creatividad y el arte no son siempre un rayo de fresca. Ya sea en el tono de rostros morenos, en los medios de comunicación se hable de este lugar basado inspiración, pero en un proyecto tan complejo como este, actos de danza y canto, el olor o en la memoria de la en miedo y disociado de cosas bellas. Sin embargo ser capaz de construir con la comunidad y organizar las artísticamente, hay numerosos murales adornados a los ideas es tan importante como la capacidad artística. Eduardo historia de una abuela. Chacón y los artistas acoplaron estas ideas y voces en pintura con el fin de “imaginar lados de los edificios (Quetzal Imports, Sorenson Unity Zaragoza, actualmente un estudiante en la Universidad el futuro.” En las palabras de Chacón, “El propósito Center, para nombrar unos pocos), algunos han estado de Utah, fue uno de los jóvenes investigadores que allí desde hace años, y ayudan a contar la historia de la participo en MAA, y ayudo a colectar datos y hablar con entero es crear un sentido de pertenencia.”

“B

Invierno 2012


8

noticias

Clase y conferencia de Náhuatl se ofrece en la U Por Garrick Butler

en hacer trabajo de campo, ser Guerrillero capases de comunicarse con la Este otoño por primera gente local es esencial. vez la Universidad de Utah Para aquellos interesados en está ofreciendo un curso de la historia colonial de América Náhuatl. Con cinco alumnos Latina, el dominio de las matriculados, el nuevo lenguas indígenas náhuatl y programa de Estudios Nahua otras, permite acceso a un gran es un proyecto conjunto número de registros realizados del Programa de Estudios por españoles e indígenas Latinoamericanos (LAS) durante el período colonial. y el Centro de Recursos y Desde la década de 1970, un Enseñanza de Segundas mayor énfasis en las fuentes Lenguas. (L2TReC). A través nativas a “elevado perspectivas de un programa de educación a olvidadas” y “a dado equilibrio distancia con sede en Zacatecas, al registro histórico mientras México, los estudiantes reciben pone a descansar los mitos instrucción de los nativos de la de la destrucción total y lengua hablada por los aztecas. desolación nativa,” según la Implícito en nombres profesora Stephanie Wood de la como “América Latina” y Universidad de Oregon, quien “Iberoamérica” esta la idea dio una presentación como de que toda la región, habla invitada en la serie de la U de español o portugués. Pero Estudios Náhua el 25 de octubre. aunque más de 600 millones Los dialectos indígenas de personas en el Hemisferio mesoamericanos cada vez Occidental hablan un idioma son más parte del tejido de ibérico, hay millones de la sociedad de los EE.UU. personas desde el Río Grande Aunque nació en Payson, Utah, hasta Tierra del Fuego que Erminia Martínez, estudiante de hablan cientos de lenguas Enfermería en la Universidad indígenas. Mesoamérica, de Utah, se crió en San Juan una región cultural que se Mixtepec, Oaxaca, México extiende desde el centro de hablando mixteca. Después de México hasta Honduras, regresar a Utah a los cinco años, es una de las regiones con dice que “a experimentado el mayor diversidad lingüística choque cultural de la religión, del planeta. Ocasionalmente la comida, y en forma general pueblos separados por pocos de la vida, pero tuve la suerte kilómetros hablan idiomas de tener una familia de apoyo totalmente diferentes. que me animó a apreciar otras Náhuatl, una lengua hablada culturas. De manera que he por los pueblos nahuas del experimentado dos culturas.” centro de México, es la tercer Ella cree que crecer en dos lengua indígena más hablada culturas, y hablar tres idiomas en las Américas, con más de distintos, le ha ayudado a 1.5 millones de hablantes. entender mejor a otras personas. El idioma oficial del imperio “El conocimiento indígena es Azteca, náhuatl, permaneció también importante, ya que como idioma oficial junto con proporciona oportunidades el español en México colonial para que la gente entienda otras hasta 1770, y muchas palabras culturas,” explicó. “Al entender náhuatl han sido prestadas por la cultura podemos entender un el español e inglés. poco del razonamiento de las Rebecca Horn, la directora del personas, creencias, ideas, y en programa de LAS, dice que es general a entender más acerca de importante que los profesores la gente.” “representen al América Latina Para dar a conocer el como lo es.” Y la enseñanza programa, LAS y L2TReC de lenguas indígenas es una han organizado la serie de la manera para que el plan de U de Estudios Nahua, que estudios comprenda mejor la comenzó el 25 de octubre diversidad de la región. Ella con una conferencia titulada explica que además de ayudar “Tesoros Mesoamericanos en a conectar a los estudiantes Manuscrito” por Stephanie estadounidenses de origen Wood de la Universidad de mexicano con su patrimonio, Oregon. El 29 de noviembre el aprendizaje de las lenguas a las 4 pm, Camilla Townsend, indígenas náhuatl y otras es útil profesora de la Universidad en varias disciplinas. Rutgers, hizo una segunda Para los biólogos, antropólogos conferencia, titulada, La Política y otros científicos interesados de las Historias Aztecas.

Winter 2012

Náhuatl class & lecture series offered at U of U

By Garrick Butler Guerrillero

For the first time ever, the University of Utah is offering a course in Beginning Náhuatl. Currently enrolling five students this fall, the nascent Nahua Studies program is a joint project of the Latin American Studies Program (LAS) and the Second Language Teaching and Resource Center (L2TReC). Through a remote education program headquartered in Zacatecas, Mexico, undergraduates receive instruction from native speakers of the language spoken by the Aztecs. Implicit in names like “Latin America” and “IberoAmerica” is the idea that the entire region basically speaks Spanish or Portuguese. Though more than 600 million people in the Western Hemisphere speak an Iberian language, there are millions of people from the Río Grande to Tierra del Fuego who speak hundreds of indigenous languages. Mesoamerica, a cultural region stretching from central Mexico to Honduras, is among the most linguistically diverse regions on the planet. Occasionally towns separated by only a few miles speak completely different languages. Náhuatl, a language spoken by the Nahua people of central Mexico, is the third-most widely spoken indigenous language in the Americas, with over 1.5 million speakers. The official language of the Aztec Empire, Náhuatl remained official alongside Spanish in colonial Mexico until 1770, and many Náhuatl words have been borrowed into Spanish and English. Two linguistics majors enrolled in the class said that the influence Nahuatl has had not only in Mexican culture but also other communities of Central America were what attracted them to the course. The way the language lives on in many words heard in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and in Mexico shows its vibrancy.

Spanish words with Náhuatl origins/Palabras Náhuatl:

Foods: tamal mole (a type of Mexican dish) chile chocolate Places: aguacate (avocado) Xochimilco Mazatlan (lots of deer) gacahuate (peanut) Tochpan (place of rabbits) guajolote (turkey) coyote Mexico Objects: metate (rope) mesquite amecate

“There are hundreds—if not thousands—of words with Nahuatl origin, and they can be heard in everyday conversations,” they explained. Rebecca Horn, the director of the LAS program, says it’s important for professors to “represent Latin American as it is” and teaching indigenous languages is a way for the curriculum to better understand the diversity of the region. She explains that in addition to helping connect Mexican-American students with their heritage, learning Nahuatl and other indigenous languages is useful in several disciplines. For biologists, anthropologists and other scientists interested in doing fieldwork, being able to communicate with the local people is essential. For those interested in the colonial history of Latin America, proficiency in Náhuatl and other indigenous languages allows one access to a large number of records made by Spaniards and natives during the colonial period. Since the 1970s, an increased focus on native sources has “elevat[ed] neglected perspectives” and “[brought] balance to the historical record while putting to rest the myths of total destruction and native desolation,” according to University of Oregon professor Stephanie Wood, who delivered a guest lecture on at the U’s Nahua Studies Lecture Series on October 25. The indigenous

Mesoamerican dialects are also increasingly part of the fabric of U.S. society. Though she was born in Payson, Erminia Martinez, a junior in Nursing, grew up in San Juan Mixtepec, Oaxaca, Mexico speaking Mixtec. After moving back to Utah at age five, she says she “experienced the cultural shock of religion, food, and in general way of life, but I was fortunate enough to have a supportive family that encouraged me to appreciate other cultures. In a way I experienced two cultures.” She believes that growing up in two cultures speaking three languages has helped her better understand other people. “Indigenous knowledge is also important because it provides opportunities for people to understand other cultures,” she explained. “By understanding culture we can understand a little bit of people’s reasoning, beliefs, ideas, and in general understand more about people.” To raise awareness of the program, LAS and L2TReC have organized the Nahua Studies Lecture Series, which began on October 25 with a lecture entitled “Mesoamerican Manuscript Treasures” by U of Oregon scholar Stephanie Wood. On November 29 at 4 p.m., Camilla Townsend, Rutgers University professor, delivered a second lecture, entitled “The Politics of Aztec Histories.”


Non-traditional students pursue their educational dreams By/Por: Flor Olivo Guerrillera

As they shyly shared their stories of motivation, accomplishment and goals, the students at Jordan School District’s adult high school night classes gave testimony to the resilience and strength they each possess. Portable number three outside of Columbia Elementary School, serves as a classroom for Spanishspeaking students in their 30s or 40s who have finally found the time to pursue their educational dreams. Their first step is getting their GED. Francisco Vazquez, a native of Guanajuato Mexico who now lives in West Jordan, UT, always dreamed of getting a formal education. Since working was a priority, he was not able to find the time. About a year ago, he had an accident at work and couldn’t continue working manual labor jobs. He went back to school. With tears in his eyes, he told his peers that now he has to use his mind more than his body, a blessing in disguise. “If I hadn’t gotten hurt I would not be sitting here,” says Vazquez. Josefina Swensen, the coordinator for the Family Learning Center (FLC) at Columbia Elementary, says this branch of FLC was created in January of 2011 but before that there were computer and English classes being offered. The current classes sponsored through the Jordan School District, are implemented in four title one schools in the area and are free and open to the public. “The school and FLC’s administration, principal Kathy Riding and program facilitator Dr. Lyn Burningham, have been extremely supportive and have provided resources for all of the classes and programs,” says Swensen. According to the 2010 census, the city of West Jordan saw an increase of persons who identified as Latina/o of 166.84%. About 17.71% of the residents in West Jordan are of Latina/o descent. This portrays much of the growth throughout the valley in the past 10 years. At the same time, Utah had the fourth-lowest graduation rate for Latinos in the country at 57 percent, according to preliminary data released by the U.S. Department of Education in December 2012. To curb this trend, this school intends to provide great education for its students but also for parents and the surrounding neighborhoods; currently all of the classes are offered in Spanish and target Latina/o communities. They offer a basic computer skills class, English as a second language, General Education Development (GED), a Sewing class, a Crocheting/knitting class and also a volunteer time opportunity to give back to the community by helping

out at the school where they are receiving services. Most class times are chosen based on community need so there is a morning and an afternoon option. All of the classes have open enrollment, instructors are aware students have other commitments so learning happens at each attendees pace. Alejandra, a GED student, remembers, “When I was in high school back home, I used to participate in spoken word presentations. I was never shy; I even participated in national events. Now I feel reserved and embarrassed, this class is helping me grow out of that.” One of her classmates, interrupted her as she spoke saying, “Emocionate, que necesitas?,” then the class burst out laughing and cheering each other on. This environment is what Illeana Barella, a GED student and mother, says is different from other times she’s tried taking a GED course. “I notice that here the service is different. If I have a question, I feel okay with asking and that it will be answered.” Once they finish this GED course, the program at Columbia offers them additional training. Students can earn Microsoft system certifications and take typing proficiency courses. All these alternative classes are taught by volunteer and paid bilingual instructors, many who have gone through similar programs themselves. Some of the volunteers share that they saw a need for a program like this further South in the Salt Lake Valley. “There are many community programs in the Granite School District and Salt Lake School Districts. Jordan School District saw the value in them and decided to provide them in West Jordan as well,” said computer technology instructor Cecilia Samaniego. The courses are taught a little differently in each community. Samaniego says, “the people who attend our program at Majestic Elementary are a lot more humble, and there are times we have to teach them from scratch, how to read and write. But as long as they are willing to learn, we teach.” Samaniego understands many of the institutional barriers that prevent people in her community from finishing high school. “These programs should be in all areas where there are Latino/a communities so that parents can learn and then can help their children do well at school and in life,” she says. Emperatriz Muñoz, who has been teaching the GED course for a couple years now, boasts about the progress of her students. She motivates them to share their stories, by

saying “Don’t be shy! What you are doing is admirable.” Swenson says she is very happy with her team of teachers, volunteers and students, “we all do it because we love the people.” Entering the adult high school classroom renews confidence, knowledge and promotes motivation for many of these hard working community members, replacing their long hours of work and worry. Barella said, “Nothing petty matters here—your immigration status, how much money you have or how far in school you got, because we know, what does matter, que aqui si se puede!” -------------------------A full schedule of times and days can be found at schools.http://jordandistrict.org/ Columbia/ specialprograms.html

9

news

Francisco Vazquez (above) and his classmates (below) attend the GED course taught by Emperatriz Muñoz (below) at the Family Learning Center located at Columbia Elementary in West Jordan, UT. Photos by: Flor Olivo

Padres y miembros de la comunidad persiguen sus sueños educacionales Mientras que tímidamente comparten sus historias de motivación, logro y metas, los estudiantes adultos de secundaria en West Jordan, Utah, dan testimonio de la resistencia y fuerza que cada uno posee. Cada noche el portable número tres afuera de la escuela primaria Columbia sirve como salón de clase para estudiantes en sus 30 o 40 años que hablan español y que por fin han encontrado el tiempo para perseguir sus sueños educativos. Su primer paso es obtener su GED. Francisco Vázquez, originario de Guanajuato, México que ahora vive en Utah, siempre soñó con tener una educación tradicional. Puesto que el trabajo era prioridad, no pudo encontrar el tiempo. Hace un año, tuvo un accidente en el trabajo y no pudo seguir trabajando en ocupaciones manuales. Volvió a la escuela. Con lágrimas en los ojos, compartió con sus compañeros que ahora tiene que usar su mente más que su cuerpo, es una bendición inesperada. “Si no me hubiese lastimado no estaría sentado aquí,” dijo Vázquez. Josefina Swensen, la coordinador del Centro de Aprendizaje Familiar (FLC) en la escuela primaria Columbia, dice que esta rama de la FLC se creó en enero de 2011, pero antes de eso se ofrecían clases de computación e inglés. Las clases actuales son patrocinadas por el Distrito Escolar de Jordan, se implementan en cuatro escuelas de la zona, son gratis y disponibles al público. “La administración de la escuela, directora Kathy Riding y facilitadora, Dr. Lyn Burningham, han sido un gran apoyo y han proporcionado los recursos para todas las clases y programas,” dijo Swensen. Según el censo 2010, la ciudad de West Jordan registró un aumento de 166 por ciento en las personas que se identifican como Latino/as. Cerca de 17 por ciento de los residentes de West Jordan son Latina/os. Esto representa el crecimiento que se a visto en todo el valle en los últimos 10 años. Al mismo tiempo, Utah tuvo uno de los porcentajes mas bajos de latinos graduándose de secundaria en el país, según los datos preliminares publicados por el Departamento de Educación de EE.UU. el lunes, 26 de noviembre. Para frenar esta tendencia, esta escuela tiene la intención de no solo proporcionar buena educación para sus estudiantes, sino también para los padres y los barrios circundantes. Por esto, todas las clases se ofrecen en español y hacen énfasis en las comunidades de Latina/os. Estas incluyen clase de computación básica, Inglés como segunda lengua, General Education Development (GED), una clase de costura, una clase de tejer y también una oportunidad de tiempo voluntario para devolver a la comunidad ayudando en la escuela donde están recibiendo servicios. La mayoría de los horarios son elegidos en base a necesidad de la comunidad por lo que hay clases de mañana y también opciones por la tarde. Todas las clases tienen inscripción abierta, los instructores estan consientes de que los alumnos tienen otros compromisos y permiten que

el aprendizaje ocurra en su tiempo. Alejandra recuerda: “Cuando estaba en la escuela en mi país, participaba en presentaciones de recitación. Nunca he sido tímida, yo incluso participaba en eventos nacionales. Ahora me siento avergonzado y reservada, esta clase me está ayudando a salir de eso.” Una de sus compañeras de clase, la interrumpió mientras hablaba diciendo: “Emociónate, que necesitas?,” luego la clase se echó a reír animándose unos a otros. Este ambiente es lo que Illeana Barella, estudiante de GED y madre, dice es la diferencia con las otras veces que a tomado un curso como este. “Me doy cuenta de que aquí el servicio es diferente. Si tengo un problema, me siento bien con preguntar y que mi pregunta será contestada.” Una vez que terminen este curso de GED, el programa de Columbia les ofrece instrucción adicional. Por ejemplo, los estudiantes pueden obtener certificación de sistemas de Microsoft. Estas clases alternativas son impartidas por voluntarios al igual que instructores bilingües pagados, algunos han pasado por programas similares. Algunos de los voluntarios vieron la necesidad de un programa como este más al sur. “Hay muchos programas comunitarios en el Distrito Escolar de Granite y Salt Lake. El Distrito Escolar de Jordan vio el valor en ellos y decidió ofrecerlos en West Jordan también,” dijo la instructora de tecnología informática Cecilia Samaniego. Los cursos se imparten de forma distinta en cada comunidad. “Las personas que asisten a nuestro programa en el Majestic Elementary son mucho más humildes, y hay veces que tenemos que enseñarles desde el principio, a leer y escribir. Pero mientras ellos estén dispuestos a aprender, nosotros enseñamos,” dijo Samaniego. Ella entiende muchas de las barreras institucionales que impiden a las personas de su comunidad de terminar la escuela secundaria. “Estos programas deben estar en todos los lugares donde hay comunidades Latino/as para que los padres puedan aprender y luego pueden ayudar a sus hijos hacer bien en la escuela y en la vida,” compartió Samaniego. Emperatriz Muñoz quien ha estado enseñando el curso de GED desde su incepción cuenta sobre el progreso de sus estudiantes. Les motiva a compartir sus historias, diciendo: “No sean tímidos! Lo que están haciendo es admirable.” Swenson dice que está muy contento con su equipo de profesoras, voluntarios y estudiantes: “Lo hacemos porque amamos a la gente.” El salón de clases para adultos de secundaria promueve confianza, conocimiento y motivación para muchos de estos miembros de la comunidad que trabajan duro, y sustituye aunque sea un rato sus largas horas de trabajo y preocupación. Barella dijo: “Nada importa aquí su estatus de inmigración, cuánto dinero tiene o qué tan lejos ha llegado en la escuela. Aquí sabemos lo que sí importa, que aquí, si se puede!”

Invierno 2012


10

features

Siblings walk towards their DREAM

By Carlos Gomar & Brian Gutierrez Guerilleros

Committed to changing immigration dialogue, a group of undocumented youth and allies walked a 3,000-mile trek across America as part of the Campaign for an American Dream (CAD). On March 10, 2012 the walkers launched their eightmonth journey to Washington, D.C. from San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge. Advocating for the Development Relief Education of Alien Minors Act (DREAM Act)—a piece of legislation that would provide a pathway to citizenship for undocumented youth—the walkers spoke in city halls, churches and universities, among other places, sharing their stories and creating much-needed dialogue about the plight of undocumented youth. Salt Lake City resident Raymi Gutierrez, 23, was one of three walkers who completed the transAmerican walk. Veronica Gomez (Antioch, CA) and Jonathan Martinez (Warner Robins, GA) also finished the walk. Other walkers who completed a portion of the trek included activists Nicholas Gonzalez (Chicago) and Alex Aldana (Los Angeles). University of California, Berkeley, student Jose Sandoval walked with the group as his schedule permitted and Brian Gutierrez, 27, joined his sister Raymi during the final month of the walk. Below are some excerpts from the journal Brian kept during his time with the campaign.

Tuesday October 16, 2012 – Dayton, OH It’s day one and I’ve just arrived to Dayton Ohio. I’ve joined the Campaign for an American Dream, a group of young activists walking across the country for the DREAM Act! These guys and girls are legit. One of them is my sister Raymi. Just seven months ago, members of the Salt Lake Dream Team and I joined Raymi and the other walkers as they launched their campaign at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. I wish I could have walked with her the entire campaign, but am happy that I am joining her for the remaining 400 miles to D.C.

Winter 2012

Friday October 19, 2012 – West Union, WV Cheese and rice! It’s been a hell a week! We are straight up homeless! Our RV broke down and we were forced to carry our stuff, the essentials, and walk the rest of the way to D.C. We are sleeping next to the freeway and are carrying our stuff in two shopping carts. We are trying to walk 30 miles a day and have no food or water. It’s cold at night and hot during the day. It’s almost getting unbearable. The scenery is beautiful, don’t get me wrong; but goddamn it gets old and boring. The sun goes down around 6:30 p.m., but it’s okay because we can do it. We all have LED lights, reflector vests and stand in a line against traffic. When cars are approaching us, we all signal them with our lights and usually they slide over. Notice I said “usually.”

Monday October 22, 2012 – Middle of Nowhere, WV So I got a story to tell. We were walking up a canyon in West Virginia when Vero and Jon made their way towards an abandoned house. We were excited. It was a beautiful torn down house looking over a bridge. It was trashed, vandalized, stripped, moldy, falling apart and spacious. The house looked like it belonged in an episode of “Paranormal Witness”! Raymi and I ended up sleeping on the porch in a tube tent, Vero in her tent, and Jon in his sleeping bag and tarp. The kicker of this all, is that we had pizza delivered (Dominos) to this place. Here we are, homeless and all --up in the mountains-, yet ordering pizza. You gotta love iPhones and technology. Friday October 26, 2012 – Romney, WV Last night was terrible! We hiked 21.7 miles through West Virginia’s mountains. I was wearing some donated Timberlands, size 10.5 shoes. My feet were blistered, swollen, and sore as hell! The last 2-3 miles to a town named Romney were awful. I limped and hobbled my last little bit but my sister basically carried me to our destination. It’s funny because I came here to take care of her, but she took care of me. I had to take multiple rests and at times and it was better not to wear those damn shoes. At one point we were on a bridge and were .7 miles away from our destination and I was ready to give up. In fact, I threw in the towel. I laid on the bridge and told Raymi “I’m done.” But as I sat on the cold concrete, my

feet felt like they were going to be amputated and I couldn’t go through with it. As I sat there and thought about the pain, it dawned on me: I can’t give up, my dad taught me to finish what I started. He showed me through his hard work and robust work ethic, that when you start something, give it your all and go through with it. I quickly stood up on my feet and told Raymi “Let’s go!” I’m happy to say we made it to our destination. Raymi is such a sweetheart. She helped me get there and continued to take care of me. She bandaged me up and cooked me dinner. Love that girl. Luckily we were hosted by a Catholic church and were able to

sleep on a cafeteria floor… beats sleeping next to cemeteries and abandoned houses! Thursday November 1, 2012 Winchester, VA We are one day away from our arrival to Washington D.C.!!! I have been on this campaign for just over two weeks and can only image how Vero, Raymi, and Jon are feeling. I bet they’re excited. Tuesday November 6, 2012 Washington, D.C. After walking through the Appalachians with limited food and water, we finally reached D.C.! It has been an unforgettable and surreal experience. Throughout the walk, we have created conversations about the DREAM Act and the plight of undocumented communities and our work did not stop upon our arrival. It was a very humbling to be part of the Maryland DREAM Act and same-sex initiatives on the ballot in Maryland. Today we woke up at 5 a.m. to hand out flyers at the polls and returned in the evenings to do the same. The White House was crazy tonight. There were masses of people, celebrating in trees, dancing on cars… the ultimate block party. When we found out both initiatives had passed, it was a victory for immigrant and LGBT communities everywhere. Thank you Marylanders for taking action.


México trabaja hacia la paz México tiene como objetivo poner fin a la violencia By Manuel Padró Guerrillero

El dieciocho de septiembre, tuve la oportunidad de asistir a una presentación sobre la crianza de los/las hijos/as, conducida por la reconocida psicóloga y autora, Rosa Barocio. Mientras muchos/as padres y maestros/as asistieron con la esperanza de oír sobre como enseñarle a sus hijos/as como comportarse mejor, la presentación fue enfocada en como ser un/una mejor padre/ madre y maestro/a. Barocio concluyó que nosotros/as debemos ser un ejemplo para nuestros/as hijos/as y estudiantes. Este mensaje fue bien recibido, sin embargo, ella continuó al tema de violencia. “Aquí en México, tenemos un problema increíble con la violencia. Nuestro país esta sufriendo uno de los momentos mas oscuros en nuestra historia; todos lo hemos visto y vivido. Hay muchas cosas mas allá de nuestro control, pero para terminar esta violencia, tenemos que empezar terminando la violencia en nuestras casas. En Mexico, aquí en Creel, yo sé que todo/as hemos vivido con la violencia, yo pienseo que podemos terminarla si aprendemos a controlar nuestros corajes y, con nuestro ejemplo, les enseñamos a nuestros/as hijos/as a respetar a otros/as.” Barocio no está sola en esta forma de pensar y de sentir. Al contrario, ella es parte de un movimiento creciente compuesto de mexicanas/os de diversas culturas y ideologías políticas que están cansadas/os de la violencia. Ellas/os están cansadas/os de la inseguridad. Están enfermos de no poder mandar a sus hijas/os a la escuela sin tener miedo. Ellas/os están enfermas/os de ver las imágenes en la televisión que las/los representa falsamente. Este movimiento está ocurriendo en maneras pequeñas y grandes. Por

ejemplo, asistí a un viaje organizado por una de las educadoras y psicólogas mas reconocidas mundialmente, Rosa Bella, para mujeres interesadas en explorar como lidiar con el medio a través de meditación y baile-terapia. Durante este retiro, mujeres lloraban mientras confesaban experiencias en las cuales fueron amenazadas a punto de pistola, o al tenerle miedo a sus propias hijas/os, y tambien de haber perdido a seres queridos. Otro de los esfuerzos de Bella para lograr la paz incluye el establecer una comunidad dentro del territorio Zeta, una cuidad plagada por la violencia. Ella y sus compatriotas se proponen a vivir en paz con una/o al/o la otro/a para poder mostrar lo que es posible en un lugar donde la paz parece ser imposible. Otros esfuerzos para hacer esto incluyen aquellos por el Padre Pato. Pato es la cabeza de La Oficina para los Derechos Humanos, una organización sin fines de lucro establecida en los 70s para proteger a la gente de la región de la Operación Cóndor y violaciones militaristas de los derechos humanos contra la violencia de las drogas en la Sierra Tarahumara. El organizo una protesta contra las violaciones de los derechos humanos en la cuidad de Creel. La marcha terminó en La Plaza de la Paz, una plaza construida en la memoria

de 13 personas masacradas por el cártel, La Línea en ese mismo lugar. En vez de criticar a las personas locales de bajos recursos que se han vuelto dependientes de la producción de marihuana para así poder sobrevivir, la única tensión de Pato es dar fin a todas las matanzas. Después de dar su discurso, delegados de varios grupos activistas de todo el país, comenzaron a contar sobre sus hijos, hijas, vecinas/os, o nietas/ os quienes fueron victimas de estas matanzas o son desaparecida/ os. Estas voces no fueron escuchadas fuera de la plaza, ya que ninguna prensa cubrió el grito por la justicia y por la paz. Los medios de comunicación internacionales relatan a México como un país naturalmente violento, ignorando estos tipos de esfuerzos hacia la paz. Medios de comunicación locales temen hablar ya que México es uno de los países mas peligrosos para ellas/os debido a su relación con los carteles. Este movimiento a sido llevado a los EE.UU. recientemente. Muchas/os activistas se han involucrado formando La Caravana por la Paz, una marcha anual contra la guerra de las drogas. Este año, la caravana empezó en México, pero terminó en Washington D.C. el 10 de septiembre del 2012, donde Javier Sicilia dio un discurso enfocado en el apoyo de: soluciones no-

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de plana violentas para reñir la guerra contra las drogas, nuevamente visitar las falladas pólizas de control sobre las drogas, facilitar un dialogue entre México y los EE.UU., reconocer la conexión social de la violencia en México y los EE.UU., y congregar un grupo de aliados que apoya la causa de la guerra contra las drogas. El objetivo fue despertar a EE.UU. sobre que está pasando en realidad en la frontera. En los EE.UU., lo menos que podemos hacer es reconocer y apoyar el movimiento mexicano hacia la paz. Y a lo mejor, trabajar activamente para ponerle un fina a la venta de armas de fuego a México. Mientras el gobierno de los EE.UU. terminó las operaciones “Wide Receiver” y “Fast and the Furious,” los departamentos de estado ahora permiten que otros gobiernos compren armas de fuego directamente de los fabricantes, sin tener que ser verificados por el gobierno estadounidense. La gente de ese país tiene que reconocer nuestro propio papel en la guerra de las drogas, y la corrupción en nuestro gobierno que ha alimentado la violencia. Barocio entendió esto cuando señaló que los/ as mexicanos/as no pueden controlar las pólizas de gobiernos como los EE.UU., y que solo pueden controlar su propio papel en el sistema de violencia que afecta su querido país, México. Nosotras/os podemos colaborar. Hasta que esto suceda, por favor deje que la voz de México sea escuchada, y visite www.caravanforpeace.org para ver como es que la mayoría de la gente en realidad se siente, y piensa sobre el sur de la frontera.

Mexico aims to end to violence, works towards peace By Manuel Padró Guerrillero Earlier this fall, I attended a presentation by renowned child psychologist author, Rosa Barocio, who addressed the topic of violence in Mexico during her talk on parenting. Acknowledging the incredible level of violence in her adopted country, she said that Mexico “is suffering through one of the darkest moments of our history; we have all seen it and lived it.” While she admits there are many factors contributing to the violence beyond our control, she encouraged her audience to begin addressing the end of violence, by controlling violence in their homes. “If we learn to control our anger,” she admonished, “if we teach our children respect for others, by setting an example for them,” this will play a role in reducing the level of violence. Barocio is not alone in her sentiments. Rather, she is part of a growing peace movement by people in Mexico from diverse backgrounds and political ideologies who are fed up with violence. They are tired of insecurity. They are sick of not being able to send their kids to school without being afraid. They hate the images they see on television and wrongly represent them abroad. This movement is happening in both small and large ways. For example, I attended a retreat led by one of the world’s foremost educators and psychologists, Rosa Bella, for women who wanted to explore dealing with fear through Zen meditation and dance therapy. During the retreat, women sobbed as they confessed experiences of being held at gun point, of being afraid for their children, of losing loved ones. Another of Bella’s efforts towards peace includes purposely establishing a commune inside Zeta territory, a city plagued by violence. She and her compatriots intend to

live in peace with one another in order to exemplify what is possible in a place where peace seems impossible. Other efforts include those by Father Pato. Pato is the head of the Office of Human Rights, an NGO established in the 1970’s to protect the people of the region from Operation Condor and military violations of human rights against drug traffickers, in the Sierra Tarahumara. He organized a march

protesting the violence in the city of Creel. The march ended in La Plaza de la Paz, a plaza built in memory of 13 people massacred by the La Linea Cartel on the spot. Rather than criticizing the local poor who have come to depend on marijuana production for their livelihood, Pato’s only concern was in ending the bloodshed. After his speech, delegates from various activists groups from all over the country began to tell about sons, daughters, neighbors, or grandchildren who have been murdered or disappeared. These voices went unheard outside of the plaza as no major media outlets covered their cry for justice and for peace. International media frames Mexico as inherently violent, ignoring these

efforts towards peace. Local media outlets are afraid to speak out because Mexico is the single most dangerous country in the world for journalists due to retaliation by the cartels. This movement has recently taken to the United States. Several activists have become involved in forming The Caravan for Peace, an annual nationwide march against the drug war. This year the caravan began in Mexico, but ended in Washington D.C. on September 10, 2012 where Javier Sicilia gave a speech focused on encouraging non-violent solutions to the drug war, rethinking failed drug control policy, facilitating a bi-national dialogue, recognizing the nexus of violence in Mexico with U.S. social issues, and the fostering of a community of advocates who would fight for reform. The objective was to wake American’s up to what’s going on south of the border. In America, the least we can do is recognize and support Mexico’s strong but ignored peace movement, and at best, actively work to and end weapons sold to Mexico. While the US government ended operations Wide Receiver and Fast and the Furious, the state department now allows governments to buy weapons directly from the manufacturer, skipping American government oversight. Americans need to recognize our own role in the drug war, and the corruption in our own government that has fed the violence. Barocio understood this when she pointed out that Mexicans can’t control American foreign policy, only their individual role in the violence plaguing her beloved country. We could return the favor. Please let Mexico’s voice be heard, and visit www.caravanforpeace.org to see how most people really feel and think south of the border.

Invierno 2012


La Cultura Perdida By Rudy Medina Guerrillero

Our culture has been stolen, Diluted like el café con leche America has been prying away our idioma querido Stripping our power Stealing our familiy’s traditions, cuentos y historias Creating wueyes Who cannot communicate and learn from the fountains of knowledge Called our abuelas, y abuelos, our elders, our ancestors Our seeds will grow up never being able to feel To respect our experiences and tribulations They will not know Our successes, haciendo algo de nada Building thriving cultural communities And creating a home hundreds and thousands of miles away… In a land that has never wanted us here a place that resisted our people From Abe Lincoln’s attempts to send ex-slaves back to Africa and the Caribbean To the implementation of Project Wetback 100 years later And the displacement of Tejanos who had called Texas home Since before the U.S. stole it Piensalo… Will you be able to contar la historia de la llorona, el cucuy, or las historias de la revolucion, lor cristeros, y de Chavez y las huelgas to your seeds? Will our seeds even care? Lost, is my generation… Barely able to hold a conversation con los abuelos Being able to listen and not help Frustrated, my parents and grandparents Calling us mensos and telling us to aprende! Cause I can tell you how the White man “founded” this country But can’t help my dad take care of the land,

Killing Us Softly

By Anita Juarez Guerrillera I’m writing my pain with these fingers I’m speaking my mind through these words They’re killing us softly….believe it They’re killing us…mind, body, and soul We got the officer patrolling, The corporate thug controlling, And politicians who support the two So how can I stay patient? and how can I stay calm, when their targets are me and you? They got us pledging allegiance to a nation that doesn’t give a fuck about the poor A nation that upholds whiteness—not only through bodies but mentality too How much can a system built on genocide and slavery really do? Some say colonialism is a thing of the past That better days have arrived for us at last But if that’s true then why is my freedom confined by capitalist ideals?

The same White man who stole from us in both Mexico y los Estados Unidos And the same land that has fed us and seaw us rise Lost is our connection to la madre tierra… Las recetas, remedios, y los cultivos de la comida que mantuvo grandes civilisaziones Lost is the substance in our conversations, Understanding the words “te amo” y “los quiero mucho” el amor de familia El amor al uno y al otro El amor a la comunidad Lost are our histories our identities, the knowing where we came from, our roots Lost is the experiences and knowledge of all the people we left behind Lost is our culture, our sense of self our souls Replaced by the White man’s stories His perceptions, His misinterpretations His privilege to obscure conquest, rape, and murder And exchange them with stories of “brave pioneers” exploring and pushing the boundaries of a rough frontier The same rough frontier our ancestors lived and flourished in for centuries Replaced is “la communidad” y la “familia” with stories of a dog-eat-dog world, of Darwinism, survival of the fittest, of Respecto motives for the rich and powerful to get mo’ money, For us that means being the roughest and toughest on the block Lost is our generation Perdida is our “new cultura” La cultura Mexicana dissected after so many years and tears of construction La cultura de los abuelos The one that saw Tonanztin turn into la Virgen de Guadalupe La misma cultura que robo leyendas indigenas y las hizo catolicas La cultura que esta perdiendo el Nahuatl, Zapotec, Yucatec, Mixtec, y la variedad de idiomas indigenas La cultura que los reemplazo con el Espanol, el idioma “civilizado” La misma cultura que resistio la colonizacion de los espanoles, los franceses y gringos

Why are there hundreds who go days without meals? Why am I expected to suppress what I feel? How come democracy means going to war without our consent? Quit fooling us, this ain’t “heaven” sent! Why have I been taught to hate the color of my skin? Why is every corner selling us gin? How come a border is more important than a life? And even with all this, why is MY disagreement with this corrupt system the one confronted with strife? Why do those who break their backs to grow our food still starving? And though this nation was built on the backs of the poor and the marginalized, why is it us they’re still harming? competition and profit is all that I hear Although this is messy and complicated, at the same time it’s all pretty clear: We were never meant to survive in a world not designed with you and I in mind assimilation discrimination segregation exploitation deportation incarceration forced sterilization global domination Some say that something is better than nothing, but what if that “something” is… Killing us softly Killing us softly with their wrongs…

Lo que siempre a estado presente, La Resistencia, La razon por la que todavia le llamamos tiangis al mercado La razon que todavia tenemos madre Esa madre de nuestra tierra, La madre de mexico Never lost es el espiritu rebelde que rechaza el melting pot Envez le ponemos chile y calentamos tortillas cuando oredenamos KFC Porque somos diferentes Hemos perdido nuestra cultura, La hemos reconstruido, Y ahora estamos apunto de perderla otra vez… En honor a nuestros padres, abuelos, ancestros, Y los mas importantes; nuestras semillas, el futuro No nos podemos dejar, No podemos perder la riquesa que es la cultura Perderla seria una falta de respeto al pasado y al futuro Poque si no conosemos nuestra Gloria… Nunca venceremos

The Past By Amy Hernandez Guerrillera

Voices in unison, from the depths inside me, whisper. “remember me, no olvides” They are stirred when I start to slow my pace. “No olvides” My blood begins to pump faster My pace quickens The invisible ribbon across generations and time Stronger than chains and more precious than jewels. “Remember me, No olvides” Traditions, happiness, laughter. These feelings of overwhelming joy stir within me These voices begin to assemble “Remember me, No olvides” My ancestors call and invite “Find me” As I take my journey forward, I discover my past “Remember me,” There are parts of my journey that are unknown “No olvides” I look into the faces of family, those I love, and wonder.“Find me”

I’m healing myself through these words there’s a difference between dying and killing, a difference between breathing and living, a difference between reform and revolution Band-Aid solutions don’t last blindfolds eventually slip shackles can slowly be broken… some might call this ignorant talk, bitter complaining, irrelevant points not worth making, but truth is, these words are for those whose hearts don’t stop aching the forgotten and abused those wrongly accused the one’s whose living situations keep getting worse regardless of who’s elected to power for mamá whose fragile bones carry a tired and stressed body for papá who is no longer physically present for my ancestors y abuelos, whose stories my ears never had the privilege of hearing but whose truths remain carved beneath my flesh, like codices on pavement, in these arrugas slowly making themselves visible for the world to see, in this vientre for them to be forever passed down these words are for my future seeds so that when they read this they’ll know to never stop. DREAMING to never stop. FIGHTING to never stop. LOVING to never stop. LIVING…

Venceremos Vol 13  

Venceremos is an alternative campus newspaper dedicated to representing and serving the Chicana/o community by advocating for social change...

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