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Forced repatriation is not a new thing.  Today in Los Angeles, there will be a ceremony to apologize for the forced repatriation after the Great Depression.

From Wikipedia:

The Mexican Repatriation refers to a mass migration that took place between 1929 and 1939, when as many as 500,000 people of Mexican descent were forced or pressured to leave the US.[1] The event, carried out by American authorities, took place without due process.[2] Some 35,000 were deported, amongst many hundreds of thousands of other immigrants who were deported during this period. The Immigration and Naturalization Service targeted Mexicans because of "the proximity of the Mexican border, the physical distinctiveness of mestizos, and easily identifiable barrios." [3]
3. Ruiz, Vicki L. (1998). From Out of the Shadows: Mexican Women in Twentieth-Century America. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-513099-5.

I just got a reminder from MALDAF (Mexican American Legal Defense Fund) that it will be streaming the ceremony this morning.  The ceremony Speakers will include:

Eva Longoria, hosting the ceremony
Hilda L. Solis, United States Secretary of Labor
Cruz Reynoso, Former CA Supreme Court Judge and Civil Rights Lawyer
The Honorable Esteban Torres, Former US Representative (CA-34)
Senator Joseph L. Dunn (Ret.)
The Honorable Gloria Molina, Los Angeles County Supervisor, 1st District
Dolores Huerta
Thomas A. Saenz, President and General Counsel, MALDEF

The program starts at 10:30 PST and can be watched at MALDEF.org.

Thought I would share this if no one else has since this episode in history is one of the many that are "overlooked" or forgotten.  Racism and oppression just keep cycling back to us in different guises.

Originally posted to CorinaR on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 08:28 AM PST.

Also republished by History for Kossacks.

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Comment Preferences

  •  whoops! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IndieGuy, ehrenfeucht games, Lujane

    Got in a hurry and posted only one footnote, here are the other two:
    1.a b Johnson, Kevin (Fall 2005). "The Forgotten "Repatriation" of Persons of Mexican Ancestry and Lessons for the "War on Terror"". Davis, California: Pace Law Review.
     2.Navarro, Sharon Ann and Mejia, Armando Xavier, Latino Americans and Political Participation Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO, 2004. ISBN 1-85109-523-3. page 277.

  •  It just never stops, does it? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CorinaR, Lujane

    Almost a century later, and our leaders still continue down this path.

    "If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.." - John F. Kennedy: Inaugural Address, January 20, 1961. We are the 99%.

    by IndieGuy on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 08:43:46 AM PST

    •  The really sad part for me (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IndieGuy, Lujane

      is that I keep learning about these things bit by bit.  I am a fairly political Chicana, pretty aware of things like the Zoot Suit riots, how the returning GIs fought for a more equal place, taught my children that Davy Crockett, Stepehn F. Austin, etc. were really invaders in Texas BUT I still keep learning new things about how racism works and how it keeps coming back, how it is so insidious.

      •  I find myself wondering how much of this... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CorinaR, Lujane

        "Repatriation" was opportunism intended to "solve" an economic question - big business hitching themselves yet again to racism and xenophobia in order to make a buck.

        At the time these deportations were occurring, California was awash with refugees from the American Midwest - Okies and others escaping the ravages of the Dust Bowl.  I do know that for the next two or three generations, West Coast agricultural migrant camps were made up primarily of non-Latinos.  (My mom was one of those, as it happened.)

        It must have been just bonus points when tens of thousands of educated, skilled people were deported alongside so much of the labor force.  You don't have to stretch very far to guess who stepped into the vacuum that left behind.

        Regardless, I guess it's always easier to kick out the brown people than the white ones.

        "If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.." - John F. Kennedy: Inaugural Address, January 20, 1961. We are the 99%.

        by IndieGuy on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 09:23:09 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  CorinaR, I keep coming back (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lujane

        to this: Losing the majority and becoming the minority in the coming years is what has stoked the fear and racism to the max recently. If you have noticed, it is now the norm to believe that in about 30-40 years, those who have ruled this country since it opened for business in 1492, are nowpoised to lose the majority. Immigration has produced the next ruling class in this country. Coming to your area real soon, just ask anyone why such fear of the immigrant. They multiply like rabbits...Now that causes fear!!

        Old men tell same old stories

        by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 09:25:04 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  As the native Americans learned (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lujane

          much to their detriment!

          Coming to your area real soon, just ask anyone why such fear of the immigrant. They multiply like rabbits...Now that causes fear!!
        •  P.S. CorinaR, and when (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lujane

          you hear, or read that illegals and Hispanics are drugs dealers, or you can get your throat slashed in the desert by Mexicans, or they want you job, your food stamps, your free health care, anchor babies, change the constitution to take away children from legal citizens, well you get the picture. I guess you have seen all this.

          That is what is called a genuine Republican Racist whistle borne out of fear! Fear of what I just wrote above

          Old men tell same old stories

          by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 09:40:07 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Don't I know this! (0+ / 0-)

            I lived in the southwest side of Fort Worth, TX and worked downtown.  A group of us were talking about how long it took us to drive home and about routes to take.  I mentioned that I drove down Hemphill and they all looked at me and told me how dangerous that was:  "Those people" lived there and what if I had a flat or need to stop.  No I should go the long way home.  

            So I just laughed at them and said that I AM one of "those people" and what they were saying was ridiculous.  They shook their heads and refused to believe that I was one of "those people" since I was their peer if not their boss.

            Perceptions are hard to change, even in the face of reality.

            Of course, the other funny thing is that my forebears were in Tejas before Stephen F. Austin, but not before the Native Americans.

  •  The movie "My Family" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CorinaR

    was the first I knew of this, in 1995.

    Edward James Olmos brought this subject to the attention of many at that time.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/..._(film)

    I must be dreaming...

    by murphy on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 10:14:19 AM PST

    •  Correction to link (0+ / 0-)

      I must be dreaming...

      by murphy on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 10:35:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  murphy I saw (0+ / 0-)

      the movie you refer to. Obviously what you saw in the movie was true then..It is more so today.

      I am dismayed, but understand this issue is delicate and touchy when it comes to race and racism. That is why we do not see diaries touching on the actual reason for the dreaded fear of the immigrant regardless of where he comes from. If he comes from south american, it means he must be stopped at all costs.

      If he comes from European country, hey, welcome to the land of the free, you speak my "lengua" and look just like me. I do know this issue touches people in different ways and I understand why its kept under the rug.

      But that is just me.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Sun Feb 26, 2012 at 10:43:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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