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No surprise here. The on-going war in Arizona against Mexican Americans continues:  
Tucson's ethnic-studies program violates Arizona law, judge rules

Tucson's Mexican American studies program violates state law, an Arizona administrative law judge ruled Tuesday, paving the way for the program's possible demise.

Judge Lewis D. Kowal affirmed a prior decision by the state's schools chief that the Tucson Unified School District's program violates a new law prohibiting divisive ethnic-studies classes.

John Huppenthal, the state superintendent of public instruction, had deemed the program in violation in June. Among other things, the law bans classes primarily designed for a particular ethnic group or that "promote resentment toward a race or class of people."

Richard Martinez, attorney for Save Ethnic Studies, issued a statement in response to the ruling:

No one should be surprised by the ALJ decision released today affirming John Huppenthal’s Finding against the TUSD Mexican American Studies program.

Notably, the ALJ dodged the constitutional questions that HB 2281 presents; this is a state statute that intentionally treats Mexican Americans different from any other group. Latinos are essentially the victims of a statute that imposes a frontal lobotomy on Latino history and culture, as if neither exists, is of no value and certainly not an integral part of the history of the United States.

I wrote about this in Latinos in the U.S.: the assault on Chicana/o studies. What I want to stress today is that this disturbing example of open bigotry cannot and should not be ignored by any of us who call ourselves progressives, liberals or Democrats.

You don't have to be Mexican American.

You don't have to be Chicano/a.

You don't have to be Latino/a or Hispanic.

You don't have to be a person of color.

You don't even need to be a student or a teacher.

For decades, we have all fought to change the outmoded "canon" of his-story to no longer be a closed, ivory-towered bastion of white/male/elite faradiddles. Most of us have ascribed to Howard Zinn's vision in A People's History of the United States.

We have fought for pride and people's power under many banners: Black Pride, Gay Pride, Women's Power, The 99 Percent.

We know the adage from Martin Niemöller:

First they came for the communists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Imagine a school curricula stripped of blacks, Jews, gays, Latinos, Native Americans, Asians and women. We have fought too long to establish (with great difficulty) cracks in the ivory tower with programs like Black Studies, Women's studies, Gender studies, Queer Studies, Ethnic and Cultural studies to ignore the erosion of those victories (and they were victories we can all claim) to now pay little or no attention to what is happening in Arizona: state sponsored and judicially endorsed slamming of the door on what we've earned.

It is almost laughable that in a state with the name Arizona, "derived from the O'odham name alĭ ṣonak meaning 'small spring,'" and a population that is almost one third Latino, which is also "home to the largest number of speakers of Native American languages in the 48 contiguous states," the idea of ethnic studies has been distorted into somehow being racist.  

I didn't grow up in an area with any Mexican Americans. The Spanish I learned was New York Puerto Rican (Nuyorican). I didn't meet any Mexican Americans until I spent some time in California and in Texas as an adult. Thankfully I had, and took, the opportunity to learn more about the history and culture of Mexican Americans, Chicanos and Tejanos. I am still learning.

How can any person who wants to consider themselves "American" remain ignorant about one of the largest ethnic groups in our nation? How can we deprive any group of the right to embrace their history and culture?

Hispanophobia is on the rise in the U.S. So is hate—of all kinds. Just check the Southern Poverty Law Center for examples. Along with the rise of hate crimes, is the right-wing pushback against education and educators. Key in all of this is our willingness to fight for more than just our own particular interest group. We must see the danger in allowing the right wing to win against any of us.

Today I am black. Today I am female. Today I am LBGT.  

Hoy soy Chicana.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:00 PM PST.

Also republished by LatinoKos, Black Kos community, Baja Arizona Kossacks, and APA Kos : Asian/Pacific Americans at DailyKos.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Happy New Year Blue Jersey Sis! Yes (17+ / 0-)

      we have all worked hard to push the academic envelope.  It's so tragic what is happening.

      We all have to work to stop this.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:14:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  This is more than all voices (0+ / 0-)

      For example, see http://www.tusd1.org/....

      The department is firmly committed to the following with an academic focus:

      o Advocating for and providing culturally relevant curriculum for grades K-12.
      o Advocating for and providing curriculum that is centered within the pursuit of social justice.
      o Advocating for and providing curriculum that is centered within the Mexican American/Chicano cultural and historical experience.
      o Working towards the invoking of a critical consciousness within each and every student.
      o Providing and promoting teacher education that is centered within Critical Pedagogy, Latino Critical Race Pedagogy, and Authentic Caring.
      o Promoting and advocating for social and educational transformation.
      o Promoting and advocating for the demonstration of respect, understanding, appreciation, inclusion, and love at every level of service.

      Some of that is pretty innocuous.  Other parts are not.

      A publicly funded education should not include "invoking a critical conciousness" (since this is overwhelmingly identified with left wing educational politics), promoting and advocating for social transformation (and the same arguably for educational transformation), or providing curriculum "centered within the pursuit of social justice" (since everyone has a different understanding of what that means).

      •  "Should" not include? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mamamedusa, poco

        Your reasons don't hold water.

        Public education is not supposed to be innocuous.  It's supposed to create educated, informed citizens.  It's supposed, in short, to invoke a "critical consciousness" of a calibre that can understand the differences between ideologies.  And there's nothing wrong with saying that.  Without a "critical consciousness" the intellectual founders of the United States wouldn't have been able to formulate the ideological arguments upon which our government was built.

        Advocating social transformation is also a pillar of American public education -- in fact, it was instituted to create social transformation, and that's why people have a right to it.  Public education was intended to elevate all Americans to a level that would allow them access to "the American way of life," which, of course, was one reason that the civil rights movement fought so hard for school desegregation.  Public education is, at root, a transformative institution.

        In fact, public education is itself a form of social justice.  What difference does it make if people have different interpretations of the phrase?  People have different interpretations of "liberty" and "democracy" and "freedom," too.  Should we just use words like "desk" and "chair" because we don't have arguments over their meaning?  Sure, that's what we need: the bland leading the bland.

        The right has injected itself endlessly into public schools and so have corporations whose manufactured curricula push capitalism like a drug.  But somehow, when a tiny bit of progressive rhetoric shows up in a single department of an entire school system, that's a threat?  You probably think we should remove the word "liberal" from a "liberal education."  After all, people have different understandings of what "liberal" means....

        "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

        by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 07:03:27 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's not the typical definition of (0+ / 0-)

          "Critical Conciousness".

          It's supposed, in short, to invoke a "critical consciousness" of a calibre that can understand the differences between ideologies.

          From http://mingo.info-science.uiowa.edu/...

          critical pedagogy also has a more collective political component, in that critical consciousness is positioned as the necessary first step of a larger collective political struggle to challenge and transform oppressive social conditions and to create a more egalitarian society. As such, critical educators attempt to disrupt the effects of oppressive regimes of power both in the classroom and in the larger society.

          But what most advocated of critical pedagogy call "oppressive regimes of power" is what most of us call democracy and capitalism.  Sorry, but fighting that is not something you do on my dime.

          Advocating social transformation is also a pillar of American public education -- in fact, it was instituted to create social transformation, and that's why people have a right to it.

          Nonsense.  Educating people is a pillar of American public education, not transforming our society.  Most people quite like our society and don't support radical transformation.

          The right has injected itself endlessly into public schools and so have corporations whose manufactured curricula push capitalism like a drug.  But somehow, when a tiny bit of progressive rhetoric shows up in a single department of an entire school system, that's a threat?

          And there you go.  When educational objectives are defined by progressive rhetoric rather than teaching facts you're playing politics and you should be shut down.  That kind of stuff does not belong in tax payer funded education.  Teach kids facts and let them make their own political decisions.

          •  If you believe that you can teach (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            blueness

            "facts" without teaching ideology, you haven't gotten a very good education yourself.  "Facts" mean nothing outside of a context.  You need to start with assumptions (which are often unprovable foundation beliefs of a moral or philosophical nature) and then use logic to build arguments that lead to conclusions. "Letting kids make their own political decisions" is exactly what critical consciousness is about.  You can't make your own decisions unless you understand that assumptions are there to be questioned and that one's ultimate interpretation of the world doesn't actually depend on "facts" (most of which you have to take on authority, anyway).   Clearly, a little tutoring in critical consciousness would have been helpful for you -- if you'd had it, you wouldn't be claiming that "facts" somehow stand by themselves.  

            The right to pursue "life, liberty and happiness" is enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, and, for political reasons, "property" was deliberately excluded. (You would have hated the authors -- way too radical for you.) As far as I know there isn't any celebration of "capitalism" in the Constitution or Bill of Rights. Then again, if you're misinformed enough about critical pedagogy to think it's somehow opposed to "democracy," there isn't much more to be said.  You've made your politics (and the politics you'd like enshrined in public education) quite clear.  In my opinion, this makes you part of the problem, so thank you for stepping up and providing an example for the home audience.  The worst part of it is that, without critical consciousness, you can't even see that you're part of the problem.

            PS. Lest you think you can blind me with science, you should be aware that the use of logic and "facts" in science depends on agreed upon standards of measurement -- foundation assumptions upon which we "all" agree. Like mathematical equations. Or gravity.  These standards of measurement are notably lacking outside of science -- in fact, that's what defines "outside of science."  Objectivity is a subset of subjectivity, and subjectivity is a whole lot bigger.

            "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

            by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 08:01:31 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Sorry, but facts exist without ideology (0+ / 0-)
              If you believe that you can teach "facts" without teaching ideology, you haven't gotten a very good education yourself.  "Facts" mean nothing outside of a context.  You need to start with assumptions (which are often unprovable foundation beliefs of a moral or philosophical nature) and then use logic to build arguments that lead to conclusions.

              Not true at all.

              Fact - the US Declaration of Independence was ratified on July 4, 1776.

              When your facts depend on ideology they are not facts - they are opinions.

              But of course this idea that there are no facts, just ideologies, has a long history in supposedly progressive gobbledygook studies.  For example, see http://www.egs.edu/... .

              Is E=Mc² a sexed equation? Perhaps it is. Let us make the hypothesis that it is insofar as it privileges the speed of light over other speeds that are vitally necessary to us. What seems to me to indicate the possible sexed nature of the equation is not directly its uses by nuclear weapons, rather it is having privileged that which goes faster.

              (And yes, Luce Irigaray is consider a serious feminist thinker, not a silly crank.)
              The right to pursue "life, liberty and happiness" is enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, and, for political reasons, "property" was deliberately excluded.

              Evidence please?  I was not aware of any deliberate exclusion of "property".

              As far as I know there isn't any celebration of "capitalism" in the Constitution or Bill of Rights.

              Nope... but the prohibitions on seizing private property make socialism rather hard to implement.

              Lest you think you can blind me with science, you should be aware that the use of logic and "facts" in science depends on agreed upon standards of measurement -- foundation assumptions upon which we "all" agree. Like mathematical equations. Or gravity.

              I hate to break it to you, but gravity exists whether or not we agree about it (and, in fact, at its deep fundamentals there is substantial disagreement about it.)

              Anyway, I invite you to disagree with gravity and then open up a window 5 stories up or higher and take a walk  on empty air.  We can submit your bold experiment for a Darwin Award.

  •  but one thing folks don't know is that (22+ / 0-)

    podemos aguantar!
    http://en.wiktionary.org/...

    It is both our strength and our flaw.

    We can endure .........
    Por los siglos.

    We work, we wait, we work, we wait.

    One day we will be a quiet tsunami that flows in and the people won't know what happened.
    We are alllllmost there.

    "How quickly these kids have affected the public dialogue. So proud of them." Clarknt67

    by TexMex on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:14:33 PM PST

  •  If the history classes in Arizona (41+ / 0-)

    taught the actual history of Arizona, they'd probably look a lot like a Hispanic ethnic studies class.

    So what this law has basically done is enshrine white people studies.

    The whole "encourages a victim mentality" thing is a form of projection so obvious it's laughable. The white victim mentality is all these guys have.  

    I just don't see how this is constitutional. It's clearly targeting one group, and excluding the spending of public money on a racial basis.

  •  Who needs to learn? We have Taco Bell (17+ / 0-)

    Sombreros, jalepenos, chips and salsa. That's all we need to know about the places south of our border.

    A token, bastardized knowledge of another culture's culinary offerings is just fine--and makes for good business! But a rich, deep, and detailed understanding of another culture, well, I guess that's just too divisive.

    Now, go eat your microwave burrito and turn on the TV.

  •  In Orange County, CA; of all places (14+ / 0-)

    In college, I took Latin American Civilization in Spanish, featuring several tests about the experiences of Spanish speakers in the US.  Several literature classes featured works by or about Spanish-speaking immigrants to the US.

    These classes certainly did not turn me into a Reconquista advocate.  This is Orange County that we're talking about here.  Most people who took these classes are as Republican as ever.  

    Or at least they were until a Republican-run bank foreclosed on their house after receiving a huge government subsidy.

    •  They don't think Latin America has any (13+ / 0-)

      civilization.   Or history worth learning about.  

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:24:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Follow the money (5+ / 0-)

        Back in the 1980's in Orange County, most of my fellow students agreed with this statement.  Actually, I agreed with this statement.

        But I disagreed very strenuously with being unemployed.

        A few of us Gringos figured out that we could get a job or a better job after graduation if we could speak another language.  And if we understood their culture.

        So we took some Spanish classes, including some Spanish For Business classes.  Actually, I learned more about culture there than I did anywhere else.

        •  My mother was a Spanish teacher (6+ / 0-)

          and since being the child of a teacher means helping out with classroom decorations and the like on Saturdays, I got a substantial steeping in Latino cultures. The primary focus was Mexico, since that's the most influential and most interesting to Texas students, but we also covered Central and South America and a little Iberian culture as well.

          I grew up in a small town that was pretty equally balanced between White and Latino (about 45% each). I won't say it was a model of tolerance and racial understanding. I will say that my experience growing up and participating in young life with such a large Latino population left me with an abiding impression that People Are People, and I roll my eyes whenever racism (overt or implied) rears its head in political discourse.

          "what did surprise me was their supposition that nobody would notice they were lying"

          by harrije on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:32:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Real history is never pretty (8+ / 0-)

        That goes for everyone's history, everywhere there are humans.  But if we can't stare inconvenient truths in the eye, how the hell are we going to avoid making the same mistakes in the future?

        "To know what is right and to do it are two different things." - Chushingura, a tale of The Forty-Seven Ronin "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

        by rbird on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:58:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  this is an excellent point -- real history doesn't (6+ / 0-)

          glorify any group's past.  Accurate Latino history would be full of both the wonderful and awful, the brave and the shameful, just as accurate history of any group would be. So how is it wrong to have classes devoted to different ethnic groups' history?  It's a way of having full accounting of the history of the world.

          If, in our efforts to win, we become as dishonest as our opponents on the right, we don't deserve to triumph.

          by Tamar on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:26:54 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Nitpick mode.... (9+ / 0-)

        ....could we say "civilizations" please?  One semester as an undergraduate, I arrived late and was put in the foreign student dorm.  The big gripe of the Colombians and Brazilians was "Latin American Culture" and not "Cultures."  Kinda rubbed off on me.  I felt like a buffoon next to the Brazilians, who spoke three languages, Portuguese, Spanish, and English, all fluently.

        "We're as different from Mexicans as Americans are from French-Canadians."

        My reply:  "There are French in Canada?"

        "To know what is right and to do it are two different things." - Chushingura, a tale of The Forty-Seven Ronin "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

        by rbird on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:21:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I work with U.S. health numbers and when I look (7+ / 0-)

          at Latino health numbers, well it depends on which Latino group you're in. Cuban, Puerto Rican, Mexican are all very different (I list those because they are the ones that are sometimes sampled heavily enough to get rates).
          So I'm with you on the "civilizations" and "cultures," and would add "ancestries" since most Latinos are a mixture of European and indigenous peoples -- and the Aztecs aren't the Mayans aren't the Incas (not to mention all the other, less well known civilizations).

          If, in our efforts to win, we become as dishonest as our opponents on the right, we don't deserve to triumph.

          by Tamar on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:58:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I wish I could remember (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mamamedusa

          Part of why I learned Spanish & took advanced classes that dealt with culture is so that I could find places that sold Negra Modelo when I was in Ensenada.

          Maybe the class was called "Latin American Civilizations".

          I can tell you what time the liquor store at the corner of Gastelum and Lopez Mateos opens, but I can't quite remember which classes I took.

  •  What's next? (14+ / 0-)

    Can students in Arizona still take Spanish classes?

    I mean...what the heck?  No way this can stand up to any kind of legitimate constitutional scrutiny.

    - If you don't like gay marriage, blame straight people. They're the ones who keep having gay babies.

    by r2did2 on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:19:00 PM PST

  •  Every day I find myself startled (20+ / 0-)

    that these bigots grew up in the same U.S. that I did. Startled that somehow these racist voices, which had grown increasingly dim and considered as ignorance during my youth and young adulthood, have now ratcheted up into a cacophony of irresponsible xenophobic rhetoric that is apparently music to far too many people.

  •  Nicely done (17+ / 0-)

    I'm so glad that you've written about this subject.

    The Arizona Republic has run several editorials by their editors against Tuscon Ethnic Studies.

    I don't know if you've seen any of these articles, but in case you're interested here's a sample:

    Ethnic studies at Tuscon schools make Latinos see selves as victims

    Light is shed on a vile program

    The state's largest newspaper editorializes and demonizes ethnic studies, and yet the country wonders about the reasons that Arizonans vote for Jan Brewer and Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
    The country wonders why Arizona is filled with so much hate and bigotry.

    I often wonder where are the churches?
    Where are the church leaders?
    Why aren't church leaders speaking out against the hate?

    I love Pootie Diaries

    by arizonablue on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:23:01 PM PST

  •  However (6+ / 0-)

    I bet there are some truly ridiculous courses that Arizona schools ARE allowed to teach.

    I was happy that my U.S. History teacher in high school happened to be a black woman.  It ensured that U.S. History was not limited to white men.

    27, white male, TX-26 (current), TN-07 (originally), liberal-leaning independent

    by TDDVandy on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:27:54 PM PST

    •  Yes - I'm blessed I had leftist teachers in HS (5+ / 0-)

      and parents that made sure I learned the full scope of history - but I am the exception rather than the rule.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:33:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I certainly never got (3+ / 0-)

        a fully-rounded (or even a wobbly halfway-rounded) education in schools growing up (NY & NJ from 1963-75). I never received any kind of clue about my own history, or most of anyone else's, except the regular story lines about European supremacy via the explorers. Fortunately, my parents, and especially my father, loved all of history, and they made sure I was aware of what really happened, and of all the world's great cultures, both large and small.

        curious portal - to a world of paintings, lyric-poems, art writing, and graphic and web design

        by asterkitty on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:46:14 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  It hits up-close and personal (12+ / 0-)

    when you're not really a member of any disadvantaged group. Oh, except female. And you have cause to observe the pure, unmasked hate of many men for women, in the pitiful, misspelled comments following media stories, in the personals ads, in the driving and other public behavior.

    Folks, the hate is there. It's quite real. It's actively encouraged by many cultural elements these days, and it won't dissipate unless it's confronted.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:28:19 PM PST

  •  I did a post today about how Romney is hurting (14+ / 0-)

    in the polls from his decision to adopt a hate campaign in order to secure the GOP nomination.

    He and the GOP will however only hurt if that pain is delivered in the ballot box. If people sit at home and allow them to win we get more bigotry and more attacks on ordinary working people.

  •  Talk bout ethinic bigots projecting (13+ / 0-)

    their own disease.

    the law bans classes primarily designed for a particular ethnic group or that "promote resentment toward a race or class of people."

    It's like Glenn Beck bawling about his victimhood for not being able to get the government to enforce his obsessive hatreds. Except in Arizona, they are using government to make their sick hatred official.

    Sunday mornings are more beautiful without Meet the Press.

    by deben on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:34:04 PM PST

  •  "Hate" has become (7+ / 0-)

    the latest must-have accessory in the current Ammurican picture.

    I'm sick to death of the sheeple - and the puppeteers who pull their strings.

    It's been my hope that OWS would address such issues -one by one -  I think they have an enormous opportunity to educate the sleeping public.

    We don't need a 'minimum' wage - we need a Living Wage!

    by brook on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:34:14 PM PST

    •  I have the same hope you do n/t (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      brook, raincrow, mamamedusa, hepshiba

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:39:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think it's a mistake to conflate... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Denise Oliver Velez, barbtries

      ...like, Faux "News" line, with the current "American picture".

      They are but a reflection of perspectives that are, indeed, too prevalent for comfort, nationwide, and dangerous...

      But they are not the sentiments most "Americans" embrace.

      Conditions have changed, as a result of generations of resolute revolutionary struggle in the masses, like building those cultural studies programs, and so many other organizing drives.

      The vast majority of "Americans" are now staunchly against racism, sexism, eco-rape, murderous monopoly corporate fascist ripoffs, and profiteering imperialist warmongering.

      That's why the right is getting so hysterical and draconian in their rhetoric and practice.  They are freaking out, calling for political assassination, mass murder, and civil war, because they recognize they cannot prevail, democratically.

      They recognize, better than many on the left, it seems, that a popular democratic revolution is at hand.

      The right in Arizona seems particularly virulent...but they will not prevail, ultimately.

      Venceremos!

      Seize the Time!

      Seize the Power!

      Bring the Better Democrats!

      All Out for 2012!

      Democracy is the most fundamental revolutionary principle.

      by Radical def on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 07:38:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Relevant Education (9+ / 0-)

    Thank you for keeping attention focused on this outrage. Democracy Now! recently did a segment on the Tuscon ethnic studies decision that included Dr. Rudolfo Acuna, chair of the respected (and extensive) Chicano Studies program at Cal State Northridge (link HERE). The point was made that students involved in Chicano Studies did better academically in all subjects....it reminded me of the '60s educational battles for relevancy. Again thank you for this post.  

  •  English-only laws (5+ / 0-)

    Arizona has set cultural recovery efforts among Native and Hispanic peoples back so far that only non-school solutions are possible at this time.  The US Dept. of Education Civil Rights Unit won't even investigate the travesty of English-only laws here.  I know, since they officially- as in formally- denied my complaint three years ago.

    This is the most disgusting action that people of a supposedly free nation could take toward others, that I am ashamed of the AZ bigots, who also ought to be ashamed of themselves!

    Propaganda is where someone uses the truth as a context for sneaking in their own bullshit.

    by jcrit on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:39:09 PM PST

  •  excellent post as always (6+ / 0-)

    thank you and Happy New Year!

    Success loves a witness, but failure can't exist without one. - Junot Díaz

    by Avila on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:39:12 PM PST

  •  is it a time for César Chávez type strike? (7+ / 0-)

    on all of the republican farmers, they are the ones who support the GOP, they forget who does all of the back breaking work in the fields, meat packing companies

    ** ** ** WTF lower left hand corner of page KOS Media, LLC Site content may be used for any purpose without explicit permission unless otherwise specified

    by vet on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:42:33 PM PST

  •  someone should sue to stop (6+ / 0-)

    the teaching of European history under the same law.

    •  This law does not allow that. (0+ / 0-)

      As written, only the state superintendent or the state board of education can exercise the consequences of this law.  So it's going to require more direct action and voices and pressure to fix the problem.

      'Powerful influences strive today to restore that kind of government with its doctrine that Government is best which is most indifferent.' -- F. D. Roosevelt

      by LandruBek on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 08:08:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Students should stay home. n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Denise Oliver Velez

    But nobody's buying flowers from the flower lady.

    by Rich in PA on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:49:15 PM PST

  •  We lived at Dine' College for several years (10+ / 0-)

    The Navajo Nation, or as it is sometimes referred to, "Dinetah" is a different kind of place, a sacred community.

    For one thing, it is hard to grasp the meaning of the lines on the map without spending at least a few years in the context.

    This really is a culture that is conscious of being defined by the four sacred mountains and the fact that this place has been the home of this people going back into time.  How far back can be a matter of some discussion, but a lot of people believe that they nevel lived anywhere else.  It doesn't seem like a point worth arguing when there are issues like how to preserve language and culture.  

    The essence of Navajo history and culture is in the language.  t just does not work like any of the European languages.  It is very complex and full of shaded meanings and layers of nuance.  It is closer to music than to English.

    If the language is lost, then the colonizing efforts of those who would destroy whole peoples have succeeded.

    To this end, the entire purpose of founding a tribal college is to provide a way that young people can walk in both worlds.  It is a real challenge to maintain an accreditation and at the same time provide linkages to heritage and language that can allow students to go on to further education or careers with a strong grounding in who they are and where they came from.  

    Originally some 90% or more would drop out of college.  That has been greatly improved on.  

    I am not sure what the impact of the efforts in Arizona to undermine the legal basis for multicultural or multilingual education has been.  But the schools in the various towns on the Nation, at Ganado, Chinle, Kayenta, Tuba City, Lukachukai, Tsaile, etc are assuring that the Dine culture and language does not die out.  

    When this has come up in the Arizona Republic, the response has been that this is about Mexicans.  But I think that there is an undertone to this that few who have not lived in this area can appreciate fully.  

    Arizona is basically still a place where the frontier prejudice against Indians is a strong cultural undercurrent.  You hear about this when Navajo friends come back from shopping trips to distant cities.  "They sure like our money well enough," they might say.  But only if you have know them for a while.  They don't believe in complaining overtly.  

    There are quite a few speakers of indigenous tongues in Arizona.  Aside from the Navajo Nation, there are fifteen or so other tribes and language groups.  

    I would point out that Arizona benefits greatly from the tourism that these various tribes and their locales attract to the state.

    hope that the idiots who have no constructive and creative solutions but only look to tear down will not win the day.

    by Stuart Heady on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:49:20 PM PST

  •  incredibzedly small minded (7+ / 0-)

    It takes a person who is incredibly small-minded and paralyzed by their own shadow to be so afraid of peoples and cultures they find different.

    Life is SO much more interesting if when confronted with difference once chooses to investigate those differences and reach a greater state of understanding and empathy and affinity with other humans.

    Because it is my experience that when one does, they first realize 1) how very much alike in many of the most important things in life we humans are, despite our earlier states of ignorance; and 2) most of those things which do make each of us unique and different and our respective communities distinct and rich are the very things that make life interesting and which can be a cause for growth ourselves.

    Bigots: You are free to release yourselves from your own prisons of ignorance and hate.

    •  As cultural anthropologist - you know I agree (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mamamedusa

      100% with you on the value of learning about difference in order to create better understanding of humanity as a whole.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:31:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I can vouch for the bigotry of some historians (7+ / 0-)

    This brought back a memory from graduate school.  A woman was sitting next to me on the first day of Greek History.  The prof gave her a strange glance, then started up with the lecture.  He left the room for a moment and she caught my glance and smiled at me.

    "He kicked me out of class three years ago.  My son's old enough for day care now, so I came back."

    "Why'd he kick you out?"

    "He said women didn't have the mind for history, and he never allowed a female grad student to take one of his classes.  Until now."

    Admittedly, the prof was an old guy....but this was circa 1990.

    "To know what is right and to do it are two different things." - Chushingura, a tale of The Forty-Seven Ronin "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

    by rbird on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:53:58 PM PST

  •  This is so wrong (9+ / 0-)
    "promote resentment toward a race or class of people."

    They are actually saying that learning more about a race or class of people promotes resentment toward a race or class of people? How...?

    Across the country we're seeing this type of thing play itself out across the whole spectrum of people based on race/gender/orientation and all of that. States are simply not allowing our history to be taught in their schools and people are flipping out when it is introduced into the curriculum, as is the case with LGBT studies in California schools recently (the awkwardly named FAIR-E Act.) Thankfully that one wasn't repealed yet, but there's another attempt in the works for 2012.

    And that's crazy. They are actually suggesting that learning about race or LGBT stuff will promote resentment (presumably toward white heterosexuals) so we should further silence minority voices and minority history for the protection of the majority's feelings.

    Not to mention that this silence obviously only adds to the bigotry we all face. If people were learning more about race or gender or orientation it would be a lot more difficult to hate us. This is made even more clear by, for example, the way people are changing their minds dramatically and quickly on LGBT rights because we are getting seen more on TV shows and because it's a lot easier to be out and tell our stories on blogs and social media. Silencing this history and trying to pretend that it's just irrelevant is dangerous and harmful to our society and makes it a lot easier for ignorant people to spread violence and hate. This is something that's worth a sustained effort to combat. How sick.

    Read my stuff at burn after writing and The Huffington Post @indiemcemopants on Twitter

    by indiemcemopants on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 05:58:52 PM PST

  •  under this law, most classes should be banned (7+ / 0-)
    Among other things, the law bans classes primarily designed for a particular ethnic group or that "promote resentment toward a race or class of people."

    classes that teach just white history or any subject that is focused on white male perspective should be banned under this law.  And, you can "promote resentment" in these classes by excluding the history, existence and culture of others.

    I'd love to see lawsuit filed on these grounds. :)

    Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Mohandas K. Gandhi

    by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:01:13 PM PST

  •  Brilliant diary as always (4+ / 0-)

    Blessings for the New Year and may you continue to educate thousands for many years to come.

    Vi er alle norske " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:04:53 PM PST

  •  WWWhhhaaaatt the ...........? (6+ / 0-)
    Judge Lewis D. Kowal affirmed a prior decision by the state's schools chief that the Tucson Unified School District's program violates a new law prohibiting divisive ethnic-studies classes.
    So....ehhhh.....what does "divisive" mean in this context, except for anything outside the cultural myopia of white supremacists in the AZ legislature?
  •  Irony (5+ / 0-)

    Speaking of a need for ethnic studies classes....

    "The Mexican state still does not officially recognize Afro-Mexicans. There are few texts that talk about the presence of Africans in Mexico," Metelus said. "We need a project in the schools to show that the dark children are just the same as them, as the lighter children. And not only in schools; it is also necessary in Mexican families."

    On Friday, the daily La Jornada published a report saying black immigrants in Mexico and the Afro-Mexican minority still suffer racism and discrimination that is not adequately acknowledged by the government (link in Spanish).

    •  It is ironic. I have a deep interest (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Utahrd, mamamedusa

      in afro-Mexicans.  During my time living in Mexico I was always asked if I was from Vera Cruz - I later found out that it was because I looked afro-Mexican.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:10:28 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm no expert, but (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Denise Oliver Velez

        "Jarocho" music from Veracruz has an African influence.  Or at least that's what it seems like to me.

        It's from 2010 but more irony here.

        Nos quejamos fuertemente de la injusticia que provocó la aprobación de la Ley Arizona, o mejor dicho, la ley SB 1070, porque se argumenta en muchos lugares del mundo que dicha ley afecta directamente los derechos humanos de cualquier ser humano sea o no migrante. Bien, si nos quejamos por las injusticias que los paisanos reciben del otro lado del Río Bravo, ¿Por que acá en México no juzgamos con el mismo peso a los jugadores “profesionales” que escupen insultos racistas a sus iguales?

        Pumas?  Pumas, la maxima casa del estudio en Mexico?  

        •  Didn't see that story (0+ / 0-)

          but it is similar to one from Brazil - Argentinian players called Brazilian players monkeys.  Of course this type of crap happens in Europe too.

          "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

          by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 07:06:37 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  You must have must have read R.F. Thompson's (0+ / 0-)

        Flash of the Spirit -- it was the first text that got me thinking about Africans in Mexico.  (That was a book & a professor that blew my mind.)  I also like Hall's An Ethnographic Study of Afro-Mexicans in Mexico's Gulf Coast: Fishing, Festivals, and Foodways, and Bennett's Africans in Colonial Mexico, but I haven't read anything else on the topic.  Do you have a bibliography? I'd love to learn more....

        "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

        by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 08:22:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  E Pluribus Unum (4+ / 0-)

    But Obviously NOT in Arizona.

    On Giving Advice: Smart People Don't Need It and Stupid People Don't Listen

    by Brian76239 on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:28:55 PM PST

  •  How sad that a political party, the GOP (9+ / 0-)

    looking at the demographics and trying to embrace the coming change, instead tries the suicidal and destructive route just like the National Party of South Africa.  And what is truly pathetic they are going to double down.  I feel you will see National Alliance types spreading this all around this country.  The stories about racist anti-Obama, anti-immigrant, anti-minority tweets on the internets, by college Republicans.  They will be the party stalwarts in 10-15 years. This banning of Latino Studies is the shots of White Supremacist/White Privilege industrial complex, that I am afraid that will not end until the end of the century.

    One does not simply walk into Mordor! One invites a gas driller in, and one’s land becomes Mordor. Chris From Balloon Juice

    by Mr Stagger Lee on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:31:43 PM PST

  •  Wow (6+ / 0-)

    Was looking forward to reading this when I saw the preview blurb.  And it was as illuminating as I thought it might be but now I am depressed.

    Though, granted, not as depressed as I've been by the sweeps and the mass firings.  It is amazing to me -- my mom can have friends carted away in handcuffs per citizenship, beaten up in public by ICE and hauled off from their crappy nursing home laundry gig, my best friend can see 100 out of 120 coworkers fired in a day (and these things in Washington)...or I read about another person who was here since they were in diapers being dumped peniless on a street in Mexico...and I'm horrified...and then I kind of forget.  And then I read something like this and remember it all.  That forgetter works too fast, and has its own little agency.  I know why I have it, and without it I'd die...but I suspect we all have one and it works better than we know.

     

    ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

    by jessical on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 06:40:26 PM PST

  •  bake sale in S. AZ (7+ / 0-)

    I am not in TUSD (in the vicinity but not in that particular district) but several months ago after this law came down I stumbled on a bake sale hosted by older women and and a bunch of kids (middle school aged) at a local shopping center. They already knew what was coming down and were raising money to continue Mexican history and culture studies after school whereas it had been a regular elective curriculum course for years. They told me this calmly and with no drama or talk of politics. They seemingly were just forging ahead calmly.

    Had I been working that booth I would have been talking politics and raising some serious hell but then again I don't have the history and the knowing and the patience. I haven 't had to pick up and start over. I haven't had my citizenship revoked for political reasons or over a labor strike. I haven't been deported to a country where I've never lived. Well, I am still seething and so might they be but theirs is different style and a style that might be a good bit more mature than mine but I still do think about "getting out the Latino vote" and I just can't help myself. (peels of laughter from my Latina friend at this point)

  •  There's something worth repeating. (4+ / 0-)

    If the history curriculum were worth anything, it would have in it all of the important documents and books that are in the ethnic studies curriculum. The reason why there was an esc was becaue all of that was left out.

    If I'm teaching the history of this hemisphere, I'm teaching Eduardo Galeano and Howard Zinn and so on. I shouldn't have to create an entire, separate academic department to teach these.

    So one of the things that we should be looking into is what kind racist garbage and/or intentional omissions there are in the "ordinary" curriculum.

    Thanks for bringing this to us again.  Prospero ano nuevo!

  •  The complex made simplistic (0+ / 0-)

    The diary offers a simplistic summary of the issues before the court and no presentation at all of the actual materials presented to the court as problematic nor of the issue that the program in question was uncontestedly in violation of school district rules requiring a written curriculum. That this particular program, as implemented, was found defective, is not tantamount to a total rejection of all Latino studies programs in the AZ schools. The court case was also as much about whether the superintendent possessed the authority to make the determination he did.

    Anyone interested in the actual case can download and read the ALJ's opinion in the case through this link to Scribd: http://www.tucsonsentinel.com/...

    •  No. n/t (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Loozerio, mamamedusa

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 07:28:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  you call it simplistic, I call it focused (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Denise Oliver Velez, mamamedusa

      Here is another link to the decision:  http://media.jsonline.com/...

      This essay was about how the racism that is afoot in Arizona is a threat to us all.  I couldn't agree more.  Criticizing the essay on the basis that it didn't offer a color commentary of the hearing is missing the point.  Yes, there are a lot of details in the MAS story, but the focus in this piece is the corrosive prejudice that is driving the whole anti-ethnic-studies campaign.

      If the problem is that MAS is defective based on merely organizational requirements, then why is Huppenthal making a determination that it violates section A of SB 2281?  If he or others want to lodge a complaint about insufficient documentation, then they're going to need another hearing.  Oh, and another law, too:  these matters are in TUSD's bailiwick.  In other words, that's just a red herring.

      'Powerful influences strive today to restore that kind of government with its doctrine that Government is best which is most indifferent.' -- F. D. Roosevelt

      by LandruBek on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 09:02:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Focus (0+ / 0-)

        The diary uses the court case as prime evidence that AZ is decidedly hostile to any sort of Latino history in its schools. The case does not really, IMO, support that weight. Such mischaracterization can only weaken the overall case you wish to press.

        •  The diary uses the fact (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueness

          that such a complaint was actually brought to court as prime evidence "that AZ is decidedly hostile" to a particular kind of Latino history (not "any sort" -- the school would be fine with the kind of Latino "history" that doesn't question white supremacy).  

          Arizona politicians have been making ongoing attacks on Arizona ethnic studies programs at all levels for quite a while. This was always an issue at UA when I was teaching there. (There were similar attacks on women's studies as well.)  

          As always in these cases, there's a question of selective prosecution.  If you're going after a program or a person based on their politics, of course you use whatever bureaucratic excuse you can find.  We actually dealt with this at UA -- there was a demand that every single professor produce a written syllabus, and the implication was that we were going to be held legally responsible for "living up" to the syllabus.  We all knew that those of us teaching politically controversial subjects were at the highest risk of being held to account. Right wing organizations like Accuracy in Academia actually sent agents to our classrooms to collect our syllabi, and then they engaged in organized campaigns to bring them to the attention of right wing politicians.  Our conservative peers were subject to no similar harassment, even though, nominally, they were bound by the same rules.  In a system in which certain groups have unequal power, the allegedly neutral rules will be enforced more stringently against minorities, so arguing that some bureaucratic rules were violated isn't any kind of proof that discrimination isn't the intent.

          "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

          by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 08:38:22 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not buying (0+ / 0-)

            First, this is public school, not university. Lower levels, tighter leashes—this is as it has always been. Requiring a written curriculum is pretty ordinary. I know—I've had to produce such documents and certify precisely how their standards were being met. Today, teaching at a private university, I have been clearly instructed to treat my syllabus like a contract whose terms might be questioned in court, in addition to now having to make said syllabus available online as much as 6 months in advance of giving the class. In any event, there was nothing adduced here that claimed that "allegedly neutral rules' were being selectively enforced, so that is a red herring.

            Second, IMO, the materials cited as problematic were reasonably called into question; that's not the same thing as manning the barricades for "white supremacy." Teaching history in a public school is not and is not supposed to be recruitment for revolutionaries or a forum to rehearse, let alone, redress, grievances. We can save the agitprop for a more suitable venue.

            •  The fact you put white supremacy (0+ / 0-)

              into quotes tells me pretty much everything I need to know about your politics, as does your comment that the standard in the field descriptions of Latino Studies describe "recruitment for revolutionaries" and "a forum to rehearse... grievances."  

              One of the functions of public school history, by the way, is exactly to recruit American youth to the principles of the American revolution, and to serve as a forum to rehearse every single one of the grievances that spurred us to separate from England.  

              Finally, if you don't think that public schools are sites for endless conservative, corporate and pro-capitalist agitprop, you haven't been paying attention.

              "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

              by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 02:50:14 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Lose the chip (0+ / 0-)

                The fact that you think that you know everything you need to about me from the fact that I put "white supremacy" between quotes, that tells me that you haven't remotely got a clue. Now, I'm going to let you in on an amazing subtlety. I do hope you'll be able to follow it: I put those two words, "white supremacy," into quotes because I was, gasp, quoting from your post. Do I need to go over that again?

                As for the rest of your post, I'm sorry to inform you that there is not a single school district in the country that asks for teachers or texts to form revolutionaries. They ask that the kids study the causes of the revolution, but that's a different kettle of fish. Their expectation is to turn out reasonably well informed citizens, rather than to man those barricades. They don't do a great job of it, but that's another story as well.

                Oddly, my own public schools didn't really ever get around to the conservative, capitalist agitprop. Instead, they taught us about the civil rights struggle, injustices in the treatment of native Americans, the history of the labor movement and how the Progressive movement fought to contain the excesses of the robber barons of corporate capitalism. They asked Norman Thomas to come speak. And they had us read the Communist Manifesto (also parts of Mein Kampf) so we would know something about the origins of totalitarian governments. The Jungle was assigned reading—not exactly a paean to capitalism, was it?

                When I became a history teacher, I did much the same, following along with what was in the textbooks (pretty much the same as above). You must have gone to other sorts of schools (or possibly were too immersed in rehearsing grievances to pay attention).

                •  Yes, it's true (0+ / 0-)

                  I "rehearsed grievances" during my public school education and at every period thereafter by demanding that minority and women's history be fully represented.  I was raised that way by a couple of grievance rehearsing socialists who stood up for me when I refused, at ten, to say the flag salute in school. Terrible thing. Truly un-American to want to be a a progressive instead of just to read about the Progressive Movement.

                  I continued to rehearse grievances while finishing my Ph.D. in American Studies at Yale, but I'm sure it didn't make me into half the history teacher you are, since I'm terrible at following along with textbooks when I know they're inaccurate. Bad me, again, for thinking my students deserved far better than to be spoon fed prepackaged, racially biased, sexist interpretations of history geared toward the lowest common denominator.  Bad me for wanting to teach them to think critically instead of accepting received wisdom.

                  The kind of public schools you advocate created the kind of citizens who allowed the country to end up in the mess it's currently in.  I advocate another sort of public school because I want a better future.  It's that simple, and I see no reason to apologize for it.  

                  "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

                  by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 05:54:36 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Correct (0+ / 0-)

                    You're probably right about not being half the history teacher I am, but that's because your Yale education has apparently led you to imagine that your job as a teacher qualifies you to indoctrinate. Can't say I think much of the results of your studies if they taught you a kind of analysis that cavalierly identifies the cause of our current problems as public education. But I suppose you can't help it, having been yourself indoctrinated by socialists when you were too young to "think critically."

                    I myself am more inclined to think current problems due, at least in part, to self-proclaimed elites who all, left and right, study at Yale and Harvard and imagine that they now know what it takes to run the country. If Romney gets his party's nomination, then we'll have the instructive spectacle of him and Obama, millionaire products of private schools and Harvard Law, battling each other for the right to put more former Goldman Sachs executives into the Executive branch.

          •  And (0+ / 0-)

            pursuant to my original point, DK is now advertising this diary on its main page under the characterization, "In "Arizona Bigotry" Denise Oliver-Velez discussed the ruling by administrative law judge Lewis Kowal that ethnic studies are illegal."

            As I had said, this is not what he did, but that seems to be the take-away.

  •  Just off the phone wishing Happy New Year (4+ / 0-)

    with husband's cousin we haven't seen in years and we actually have a chance to go visit, this year, since dear hubby got a job!  Yeah, with 6 months more of extreme austerity to pay off debts, we may be actually able to take a vacation to visit relatives!

    BUT, we are worried about going to Arizona.  Our son has beautiful brown skin, black hair, and gorgeous brown eyes (with long eye lashes). He happens to be Romanian and is an immgrant. He'll be 16, and we'd like him to be able to go off freely with his 2nd cousins ... but what if he's stopped?  

    What kind of papers are we supposed to have to make sure he carries with him?  We don't even know if we have "the right" papers for him, in general.  Should he carry the full 4 inch file of papers that proves he has "the righ"t to be here" as our son?  Most of those are actually in Romanian with cetified translation in English.  I don't want him arrying around the originals, and can anyone imagine him carting around a copied file in what? A backpack wth his 2nd cousins at the mall?

    He has a pink card that was issued to him as baby, but he fell within the period where Clinton's administration just made all the foreign adoptee citizens. he doesn't have any other kind of "card," now. His birth certificate is from Romania in Romanian -- with oddly enough, OUR names on it.  Again, it has atached, cetfied translatoins.

    Yean, as a Mom, I'm NOT at all comfortable we wouldn't possibly lose him into some sort of immigration hell while we spent money we don't have to get our American citizen son back!

    If they asked him to show his papers, it is thoroughly possible that he could be locked up for quite some time while we hired lawyers to figure out what they wnated from us and we might not even have whateve rthe fuck papers they wanted

    I just can't believe that we went through all these kids of concerns with our family as we were tallking about finally having a chance to see, this year.  Even having to THINK about all this at all, thanks the party who claims that they are  for less governmental iterfernce in our lives, is nuts@  

    Until we can figure out a way to ensure our son can move freely in AZ, we are left with  deciding NOT be go to AZ to visit with family.

    How nuts is Republican rule or what?

    Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

    by bkamr on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 08:34:51 PM PST

    •  SB 1070 is enjoined right now (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bkamr, Denise Oliver Velez

      so don't worry about that.

      'Powerful influences strive today to restore that kind of government with its doctrine that Government is best which is most indifferent.' -- F. D. Roosevelt

      by LandruBek on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 09:13:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you. :) That's a weight off my mind, a bit. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Denise Oliver Velez, mamamedusa

        Our relatives are very worried about the "climate," though, and I don't mean the dry heat. A  firend of theirs was just recently stopped for a busted tail light, and he was held through the holidays.  He's a citizen; his family hae lived in AZ for generations.  However, his family is bilingual, and he was born at home.  Even with the law enjoined, it would seem that justice is not equally and easily for all.  He was released after 3 weeks, but he missed his mother's 80th birthday party.

        But, thank you for the information.  I'll get on Google and do some reading to better understand what is going on there.

        Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

        by bkamr on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 10:48:24 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I'm wondering if a similar law could (3+ / 0-)

    be written to ban teaching climate change? This type of law is far more dangerous than many people realize.

    The other thing is that many of these old conservative Republicans assume that only Latinos want to learn about Latin culture. As long as the classes are open to everyone it's pretty clear what they are really afraid of.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

    by dopper0189 on Sun Jan 01, 2012 at 09:51:25 PM PST

  •  This is not (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Denise Oliver Velez

    America.

    There is nothing more exciting than the truth. - Richard P. Feynman

    by pastol on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 02:20:33 AM PST

  •  No, not with this diary, (0+ / 0-)

    or at least not with all the assumptions it's making.

    I've always disliked the view of history as a fundamentally racist, elitist activity until St. Howard Zinn came along and liberated it.  (I also don't think very highly of Zinn, needless to say.)  I'm not entirely against ethnic studies, and I don't think I would support the Arizona law.  That said, I do worry about the idea that students should focus solely or largely on their own culture, to the detriment of others.  I am NOT the only liberal concerned about this; I can think of at least two (Robert Hughes and Arthur Schlesinger) who have expressed this same concern much more eloquently than I have.  

    And can we PLEASE drop the stupid idea that the first three letters of the word "history" have anything to do with maleness?  According to my dictionary, the word "history" is ultimately derived from a Greek word meaning one who knows or sees.  (This is, of course, an inspiring idea in and of itself.)  

    An armed society is... a society in which a lot of people get shot.

    by lungfish on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 02:37:38 AM PST

    •  I can't remember any feminist claiming (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueness

      that "history" as a discipline is fundamentally racist or elitist as a discipline.  After all, there are plenty of feminist & nonwhite historians. Histories, on the other hand, are written by people with biases, and tend to reflect them in their methodologies & practices, and in the facts they choose to portray. Historiography, which is the history of histories, shows very clearly the way that "history" (not the discipline, but the academic & cultural consensus on the truth of a particular story) changes. These changes are sometimes based on new factual revelations, but not always. (See Frances Fitzgerald's wonderful though sadly outdated America Revised for the quintessential example of how that works with U.S. history textbooks.)

      Zinn is no saint; he's the guy who wrote the most popular progressive revisionist American history text of our age.  The Beards played that role in the previous generation. As an historian, he's a generalist, and specialists can pick holes in various aspects of his scholarship. On the other hand, it's been impossible to disprove the existence of the general trend of American oppression of minorities, aliens, women and the poor that he describes.

      And can we PLEASE drop the stupid idea that the women who use the term "herstory" actually think that the "his" in "history" is anything more than an opportunity for an excellent pun to make an excellent point?  The "his-" doesn't have anything to do with maleness.  But history as traditionally taught has everything to do with maleness.  Pretending that we take the pun literally is just a distraction.  (Or maybe you actually took it literally.... wow... sad...)

      "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

      by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 08:53:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I don't have to image this curriculum (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mamamedusa, poco, blueness
    Imagine a school curricula stripped of blacks, Jews, gays, Latinos, Native Americans, Asians and women.

    It's the one I grew up with.  And since I taught at the U of AZ for almost a decade (until 2005), I lived in the center of the anti-ethnic studies storm... as a professor teaching African American and Women's Studies and working collegially with professors of Chicano/a and American Indian Studies.  This is brewed in Arizona, but it's going to spill over into other states just like the anti-immigrant bills are spilling over. Get ready to fight it, because this is an equally important battle.

    Make no mistake -- the ban on teaching ethnic studies (a goal the right's Culture Warriors have had from the beginning) -- is part and parcel of the right's agenda to not only place racism front & center in its platform, but to re-establish white supremacy as the uncontested "American Way of Life," if necessary by disfranchising, impoverishing & imprisoning every single person who might be a threat to that goal.  The right is skilled at playing on the fears they've cultivated, starting with the anti-Affirmative Action movement of the late 1970s-1980s, continuing with the (largely successful) quest to plant the fear of "reverse racism" in the minds of white Americans, and moving into the future with a campaign that makes criticism of the racism that permeates U.S. history into the equivalent of treachery and anti-Americanism.  

    The use of the Martin Niemöller quote is apt here, and we can see it in Obama's signing of the Indefinite Detention Bill.  If we, as Americans, had stood up and insisted that Constitutional rights like habeus corpus also applied to non-citizens, there's no way that this indefinite detention bill could have stripped those rights from American citizens.  Similarly, unless we stand up for the rights of minorities and women -- rights to equality, justice, and fairness; rights to cultural and historical acknowledgment -- all Americans will lose those rights as well.  Minority rights are the canary in the coal mine -- the air is poisoned and it'll kill us all if we don't work, right now, to save everyone.

    We're not a post-race society.  We're a society in which racism has made a vicious and ugly resurgence -- without ever actually having disappeared -- and if we progressives don't fight that with everything we've got, and if we don't figure out how to properly publicize & propagandize an antiracist message -- the America of the future is going to be a dangerous and vile place to live.  We're well on our way already.

    "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

    by hepshiba on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 06:49:33 AM PST

  •  Mexican American Studies will come back to AZ (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TexMex

    probably much sooner rather than later. It's like not studying desert in AZ, imposible.

    There's another Latino ethnicity that often gets missed and it's huge out here in the South West. I wouldn't know how to label it, I usually call the people Coloradan's or folks from New Mexico. They've been here for generations and after an ethnicity has been in this country for a generation their culture is very American, after multiple generations, well, they are very very American.

    We used to have a senator who was Hispanic but I always thought of him as being very Colorado, kind of like Colorado to the max, I hear it in his accent and his attitude. Now he controls most of the Western United States as most land out here is federal.

    I'd think most of the Southwest is inhabited by similar but I pretty much don't notice, kind of a we are us kind of thing.

    "Slip now and you'll fall the rest of your life" Derek Hersey 1957-1993

    by ban nock on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 07:50:57 AM PST

  •  American music! (0+ / 0-)

    "How quickly these kids have affected the public dialogue. So proud of them." Clarknt67

    by TexMex on Mon Jan 02, 2012 at 08:30:56 AM PST

  •  apparently I didn't get the memo. (0+ / 0-)

    So... can somebody explain in a few consistent sentences why this stuff needs to have its own departments?

    I mean - apparently this is about historic research. Should'nt that be done in the history department?

    "Ethnic studies" is a purely american phenomenon, and coming from a quite different background I still fail to understand why so much fuss is made about that?

    Is that court really saying that you can not research Mexican-American history, because the results may or may not be liked by some?

    And if so, isn't that a blatant violation of the first amendment and all principles of academic freedom?

  •  Excellent diary, Denise! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    leftist vegetarian patriot

    I couldn't believe the court decision on this one. Maybe we should file a lawsuit on how "eurocentric" the entire curriculum is. Jeez.

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