getting out of your kitchen and building solidarity with undocumented workers!

posted on: Monday, April 28, 2008

May 1st is international worker's day. In Brazil it is a national holiday and I think it's a national holiday is most Latin American countries. On May first there will be a rally from 12:00-2:00pm at the UCSC campus quarry and from 2:00-4:00 a March from the quarry to San Lorenzo Park. I am organizing families to March with the workers leaving from family student housing at the UCSC campus at 12:30 to meet up with fellow demonstraters at the quarry. If you live in the Santa Cruz area and would like to March with us please contact me at This March is especially significant to undocumented workers who make this campus run, our agricultural system work and so many other aspects of our lives come together. Below is an excerpt from the M.I.R.A Movement for Immigrant Rights Alliance.

On the significance of May 1st

Since the Haymarket Massacre of 1886, May 1st has represented a day of international worker solidarity. With the unprecedented mass mobilizations of 2006 in defense of immigrant rights, May 1st has been re-conceptualized to include the struggles of workers deemed “undocumented.” In recent years the veritable war on immigrants has only been escalated with the inception of the war on terror, as demonstrated with the increasing militarization of the Southern border, the proliferation of new deportation detention centers, and the unconstitutional raids perpetrated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, ICE. These intensifications are directly attributed to the
neoliberal agenda of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which seeks to maintain the fluidity of the physical geopolitical border for transnational capital but not for people. All of which is in violation of the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo, made after the Mexican-American War, where it was agreed that the freedom of movement of peoples between these two nation states would be protected and that the property of those already established in the newly conquered territories (including California, New Mexico, Texas, Colorado, Nevada…) would also remain respected.
In response to the aforementioned realities, the need for another mass mobilization is urgent. It is important that this day, in a community of academics, be a day of education; learning and sharing experiences, a day of raising consciousness and spreading awareness. And indeed, while the struggles exist largely within the realm of ideas, there exists the need to get out of the classroom and into the community to demonstrate a humanist dissatisfaction with global, federal, state, and municipal policies of exploitation (paying poverty/slave wages to all workers, the free trade policies and privatization), manipulation (via the popular media), and domination via fragmentation (the perpetuation of grouping, degrouping, and inter-racial antagonisms in the popular media, COINTELPRO counter intelligence programs of FBI).
To demonstrate our insistence on the respect for all humans and our fear of a future in which scapegoat politics continues, we must unite across ethnic/class/racial/gender
/sexuality lines in order to best counter policies of structural dehumanization and institutionalized criminalization, reminiscent of any totalitarian regime. We feel it is eminent to demand for the right to not emigrate, but also for the right to universal amnesty for those who have been and continue to be economically displaced from all nations, particularly Mexico and Latin America. We believe that many student organizations and faculty share these sentiments and recognize the importance of honoring this day as it is representative of the struggles of fellow community members, fellow humans, brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers; by not holding class on May 1st, coming to the rally at 12pm in the Quarry near the Baytree Plaza, marching peacefully and in solidarity to the San Lorenzo park, where at 4pm there will be a celebration. We welcome you to take an active role in this coalition and to distribute this message to all UCSC and community members.


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