Two preview stories set the tone for the march. Action 4 news started their morning show saying, “Cesar Chavez is one of the most recognizable Hispanic figures and a true leader in the civil rights movement.” See the video interview here.
The Rio Grande Guardian followed up the pre-march excitement:
LUPE Executive Director Juanita Valdez-Cox said the big issue for LUPE members this year is winning immigration reform that is “comprehensive and humane.” She said the 10th Anniversary March will “send the message” to elected officials that the Rio Grande Valley needs immigration reform for Valley families, the Valley’s economy and the safety of the community.
“2012 was the dawn of a new day of political empowerment of Latino and other minority voters that has brought the light of immigration reform to the horizon,” Valdez-Cox told the Guardian. “Latinos were instrumental in the outcome of the 2012 elections and immigration reform was a mobilizing issue. We are calling on Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz to embrace this new day and support immigration reform that brings the light of justice to the Rio Grande Valley and the state of Texas.”
Read the whole pre-march story on the Rio Grande Guardian website.
The day of the march, we had great media coverage, with The Monitor, Action 4 News, KRGV Channel 5 News, the Rio Grande Guardian, Estrella TV, and El Nuevo Heraldo coming out to share the event with their audience.
The Monitor reports:
Carrying the flags of Texas, the U.S. and the UFW, McAllen resident Lalo Saldaña said he is a U.S. citizen who grew up in Matamoros and was there to celebrate the push for immigration reform and UFW movement.
“The government needs to understand that we’ve been here for many years and should allow them to get their documentation,” said Saldaña, 67. “They’ve worked hard for their families and they have rights.”
Born in Saltillo, Coahuila, Mex., 24-year-old Milena Melo lived in Mission and now resides in San Antonio. She said the fight for certain rights that belong to all individuals, regardless of citizenship status, continues.
“It’s important for me to identify with other immigrants,” she said of attending the event.
Action 4 News also came out to cover the event and interviewed former Proyecto Azteca head David Arizmendi:
“We want to push Washington to come together, Democrats and Republicans to acknowledge the contributions of the immigrants in this country and some of them are undocumented,” David Arizmendi, South Texas College professor said….
“The support in this community is fantastic because it touches everyone’s lives,” Arizmendi said.
And no event would be complete without the great coverage of Spanish print media. El Nuevo Heraldo captured the spirit of celebration with their article, reporting:
Gritos de júbilo y manifestando sus esperanzas de ver una pronta reforma migratoria digna y justa para todos, más de mil personas pertenecientes a diversas organizaciones comunitarias se reunieron el sábado en el mural de los braceros ubicado en el Parque Municipal de San Juan para iniciar una marcha celebrando el 10o. aniversario de LUPE y el natalicio del líder activista y defensor de los trabajadores agrícolas César Chávez…
Vanesa Menchaca, originaria de Reynosa y residente de Donna, dijo que ella es una dreamer (indocumentada traída a este país por sus padres cuando era niña), mientras sostenía una bandera mexicana en sus manos.
“Mi familia y yo hemos sufrido mucho por ser inmigrante, lo que deseo es que se pase la ley para la reforma migratoria para yo poder ir a la universidad”, dijo la estudiante de noveno grado.
Mencionó que todavía no solicita para la Acción Diferida, pero que existe un halo de esperanza para que el rechazo y la discriminación que sentían terminara.
“Sé que vamos a ganar la reforma, va a ser a paso lento pero seguimos dándole para adelante”, exclamó.
Thanks to everyone who made the march a huge success! And thanks to the various media outlets who helped spread the legacy of Cesar Chavez and the farmworker movement to all those Valley families who share in that legacy but could not attend the event.