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Since 1969.
Raza...Learn, Unite, Mobilize!

Until a room is reserved for our meetings, which will take a couple of weeks, MEChA meetings will take place on Fridays at 4:00 PM in the University Library. We will meet in the Fourth floor outside on the terrace. Meetings are open to everyone. Hope to see you soon!
ALejandro Serrato
CSUDH MEChA President

Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana Y Chicano de Aztlan (M.E.Ch.A.), is a student based organization that promotes on campus and community empowerment through awareness. We focus on political, social, educational, and cultural issues that pertain to the Chicana/Chicano community. Since the 1960s, the term Chicana/o has been a political term that is part of our cultural means of choosing our own identity and future. The term Chicana/o does not imply any national or ethnic origins, it refers to a state of mind, a new consciousness, and a pride in our peoples. Simply put, Chicana/o means an acknowledgement that we are the descendants of the original civilizations of the Americas (i.e. Mexica, Inca, Maya, Purepecha) with our own history, language, and culture that we must acknowldege and rediscover. We are also a Meztiso Nation (Mixed Blood) that spans across political boundaries and has a long history of social oppression and civil unrest. Nevertheless, the culture and spirit our people continues to thrive and flourish under the thumb of governments and international corporations. We salute those that have fought before us and swear allegence to all of the exploited peoples of the World because "La Union Hace La Fuerza!"

CSUDH MEChA & CSUDH Chicana/o Alumni Assoc.
 Invite students, faculty, community, todos to attend the FREE Nahuatl workshops that we will be Hosting.  With our guest, David Vazquez, author of  La Voz de Tecnochtitlan.
                         The Workshop Dates and 
                Rooms Are as  Followed
               Sat. May 1st 2004 @ SBS D219
               Sat. May 8th 2004 @ SBS B215
                  All workshops will be from 11:00 am till       
              1:00 pm.  For more info email us at 

Join the MEChA mailing list 



COLUMN OF THE AMERICAS by Patrisia Gonzales and Roberto Rodriguez


     The nationwide attacks against MEChA (Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan) by the extreme right wing have escalated to extremely disturbing levels. For example, tens of thousands of dollars are now being funneled by hate-radio aficionados to target the UCLA chapter.

     MEChA -- with hundreds of chapters nationwide -- was born on college campuses during tumultuous times to fight against dehumanization, racial supremacy and segregation. Thus, it's no stranger to hostility. To understand these continual attacks, one must study the language employed by its attackers and also revisit the culture of lying.

     Truthfully, the disingenuous attacks are little different from those carried out by anti-immigrant politicians who also oppose affirmative action and bilingual education -- all the while claiming to be adhering to Martin Luther King Jr.'s principles. They do this delusionally, pretending that we already live in a color-blind society, and accuse those who dare fight against racial inequalities of being "racists."

     That's why we've long advocated a national convention on the English language -- to ensure that we're all using the same dictionary.

     For example, nowadays, we have a government that wages war and calls it peace and claims it's the route to democracy, even while facilitating coups against democratically elected leaders in Venezuela and Haiti. Aside from using bribery and blackmail, it also forces its "coalition partners" to go against their own citizens. Meanwhile, it conducts massive airport raids (Operation Tarmac) looking for terrorists, but comes up only with Mexicans. Additionally, many top scientists are today accusing the Bush administration of willfully distorting science to meet its political, environmental, health and military ends.

     This points either to "a crooked and lying bunch" or evidence that we're all not using the same dictionary. (For a fuller accounting of such willfull misrepresentations (227 lies) by the administration, see the The Iraq on the Record report:

     That's the context of the attacks against MEChA. Its leading detractor, VCT/American Patrol (Voices Concerned Together), is listed as a hate group by the prestigious Southern Poverty Law Center ( Groups such as these claim to be anti-illegal immigration. Yet they target MEChA, which isn't even an immigrant group, insisting that it's a racist organization. (That's akin to the KKK categorizing MLK as a bigot.) That anyone would pay them any mind is mind-boggling. No group gets onto SPLC's list by accident. Despite this, VCT's scurrilous charges have been parroted by politicians and an unquestioning media that has only been too eager to portray Mexicans, Central and South Americans as terrorists.

     When the right wing went after former California speaker of the house Antonio Villaraigosa and gubernatorial candidate Cruz Bustamante -- for not "renouncing their ties" to MEChA -- those were truly Orwellian moments.

     Currently, this right-wing movement has coalesced around targeting UCLA's MEChA chapter, though the attacks against MEChA are national. On campus, the Bruin Republicans, with the assistance of at least $28,000 raised from "hate radio," are demanding that MEChA denounce its founding documents. BR members, like their ideological brethren, apparently can't read. They insist that MEChA denounce "El Plan de Aztlan" (which is not its founding document). But even if it were, there's nothing to denounce.

     As has been aptly noted, that would be like demanding that Bruin Republicans denounce the U.S. Constitution for permitting land theft, slavery and segregation. The difference is that the worst MEChA (in its 35-year history) can be accused of is occasionally using inflammatory rhetoric ... or of being too idealistic.

     Is it even legal to funnel money to a campus group to attack a duly recognized student group, which, incidentally, does not single out Republicans?

     To be sure, MEChA's ideological leanings have ranged between the teachings of Gandhi and Malcolm X -- from supporting the human rights work of Cesar and Helen Chavez and Dolores Huerta to the Zapatistas.

     Internally, individual MEChA chapters have struggled with sexism, homophobia and nationalism, etc. And no doubt, historically, out of the tens of thousands of members, a few have gone on to become extremist kooks. The vast majority, however, are upstanding citizens and certainly, MEChA has never had the desire or power to oppress or terrorize society. Quite the contrary.

     So what is it about MEChA that inspires attacks from the extreme right wing? Perhaps in refusing to bow down to the patron, they upset the image of Mexicans sleeping under cactuses. Truthfully, the media focus should not be on MEChA, but on a culture that permits anyone to lie and pay no price, except to occasionally wind up on a hate site. Or, as we recently saw in Spain, to get booted out of office. Viva los Zapateristas!



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