LA GRAN MARCHA HIGHLIGHTS DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PROTESTS OF 2006 & TODAY
"Angel Tenez is the former Executive Director of Unity Corps, Inc. and one of the organizers of La Gran Marcha, the largest mass demonstration in U.S. history."
SAN ANTONIO - As I sit here writing in a Texas hotel room contemplating on what to say regarding the ten year anniversary of La Gran Marcha this week, I can not help but to think of how this major historic event compares to the protest demonstrations being seen around our nation today. Certainly, many of the issues are all still the same. There's still that talk of building a wall with Mexico. There's still a pernicious overriding anger from many diverse factions of U.S. society on a number of various fronts. Issues such as the hateful rhetoric and undue outward violence being exhibited toward Latinos and other immmigrant groups; liberal activists protesting about police brutality and the wrongful killings of blacks 'and Latinos'; the loss of American jobs to Mexico; trading imbalances with China; and such.
What is different from the protest demonstrations of 2006 to those that are being seen around the U.S. today is the level of violence that is taking place at these public events.
Whereas La Gran Marcha which drew roughly 1.25 million people in 2006 to become the largest mass demonstration 'ever' in the history of the United States - and it had not even one single arrest. A typical rally for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump will have some few thousands of people to be marred by violence and civil unrest. Oh, and there's one other similarity. Most of the fury is being spurred by non-progressive rhetoric.
Beyond the scope of the U.S. immigration debate and a pronounced fear of many in the dominant ethnic ruling group, there are those other issues that we commonly share with the world as a whole. Last year we had the Paris and San Bernadino terror attacks. Now this week the ugly head of terrorism has again been revealed with the latest suicide attack in Brussels, Belgium. And of course, there is the largest single issue of all, the destruction of our planet's environment. So then, what is it that we can take from all of this? Simply it is this. Whether the issue is immigration or radical Islamic terrorists, much can be learned from the million plus who wore white t-shirts at La Gran Marcha a decade ago. We should all continue to debate and for some even protest. It's needed. But do it with intelligence, truthfulness, and most importantly peacefulness. ~ c/s
What Was La Gran Marcha? Why It Was Organized? What Was It About? And.. Why Do So Few Know About It?
La Gran Marcha was the largest protest in U.S. history which occured in the streets of downtown L.A. on March 25, 2006. It was a reaction against U.S. congressional bill H.R. 4437 which passed the House of Representatives on December 16, 2005. This legislation which was quickly making its way through the Senate for a final signature by the then Republican president, was thwarted by La Gran Marcha when Congress was alerted to the tremendous mobilization and quickly alligned forces of Latinos and other ethnic coalitions (primarily Asian) that took to the streets. If enacted into law, H.R. 4437 would have had an unprecedented negative effect on many millions of people (both legal citizens and the undocumented) that are currently living and emigrating to the U.S. Some of the measures included: the felonization of misdemeanor status for being an undocumented worker and overstaying visas; and the creation of a new U.S. citizen identification system.