Here’s How People Are Celebrating Cesar Chavez 25 Years After His Death
Cesar Chavez — the fierce activist for farm workers rights — died on April 23, 1993, but his legacy lives on through various celebrations on his birth month.Instagram/@iam2018
In 2014, President Barak Obama declared that the Latino leader would be celebrated by the nation on the day of his birth and declared March 31 would be Cesar Chavez Day.
President Obama said: “The values Cesar Chavez lived by guide us still. As we push to fix a broken immigration system, protect the right to unionize, advance social justice for young men of color, and build ladders of opportunity for every American to climb, we recall his resilience through setbacks, his refusal to scale back his dreams. When we organize against income inequality and fight to raise the minimum wage — because no one who works full time should have to live in poverty — we draw strength from his vision and example.”
This year, however, at least one person tried to dismantle the country’s tribute by declaring Cesar Chavez Day be named “National Border Control Day.”
“Cesar Chavez was best known for his passionate fight to gain better working environments for thousands of workers laboring in harsh conditions on farms for low wages. He also staunchly believed in sovereignty of the United States border,” Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert said in a statement. “In fact, it was his firm belief that preventing illegal immigration was an essential prerequisite to improving the circumstances of American farmworkers; and in 1979, in a speech at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., he demanded that the federal government enforce the immigration laws and keep illegal aliens out of the country.”
And in the very state that Gohmert represents, people there paid it no mind to his senseless words, and celebrated Cesar Chavez Day in the most beautiful way.
In San Antonio, people gathered for the 22nd annual Cesar E. Chavez March for Justice.Instagram/@eltallercitodeson
This year’s theme for the march was: “Building Bridges for Education, Non-Violence, and Social Justice.”
“We are not only here to celebrate my grandfather legacy and the legacy of Mr. Martinez who started the march, but also out here to celebrate the issues that are important to everybody,” Andres P. Chavez, grandson of the late Cesar E. Chavez, who served as grand marshal said to a local ABC news affiliate. “We are going to be chanting really loud. We are chanting the words ‘Si se puede’ because those words weren’t just the rally cry of the 1960s, but those words are alive and well today and will carry us through all of our battles against injustice to equality.”
Thousands attended the march, including Texas Congressman Joaquin Castro.Instagram/@mr_peefer
“This weekend I joined #SanAntonians in the 22nd Annual Cesar E. Chavez #MarchforJustice to honor his legacy as a civil rights activist and labor leader,” Castro tweeted. “Very inspiring to see so many folks marching for great causes this weekend in #TX20.”
Here’s some more wonderful highlights from the march in San Antonio.
We love those “Si Se Puede” shirts!
Cesar Chavez was every where, even on the bus.
We hope they keep that all year-round.
So many people wearing red.
The red stands for “hard work and sacrifice” by immigrant workers, the United Farm Workers (UFW) state about the significance of their colors. The black eagle represents “the dark situation of the farm worker. The Aztec eagle is an historic symbol for the people of Mexico. The UFW incorporated the Aztec eagle into its design in order to show the connection the union had to migrant workers of Mexican-American descent, though not all UFW workers were Mexican-American.”
If you’d like to continue to celebrate Cesar Chavez, there’s another march on April 8.
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