CRUISE or LOSE: Chicanos Preparing to Cruise to the Polls While Others Threaten to Boycott the Vote

The Chicano Movement is reviving going back to the basics of asserting ourselves particularly when Chicano leaders before us made great sacrifices, many even with their lives


CRUISE or LOSE: Chicanos Preparing to Cruise to the Polls While Others Threaten to Boycott the Vote

By Viva Samuel Ramirez

Approaching another crucial election cycle, the chatter increases among Chicanos as we look toward cashing in our inheritance as a political powerhouse.  Once again (or should I say ‘still’) the big issue on the marquee is the pending reform of our broken immigration system. 

Taking a look back, we can see that the CIR Movement has raised the awareness of many to the plight of our undocumented neighbors living and working with us.  It has compelled many to take to the streets to voice their opinions and to the polls to make their voices heard regarding future of this country's policy.  Civic engagement is infectious, and we are now a more engaged community than when we started.  Is the CIR movement the requisite primer which will reactivate Chicanos in American politics in a way not seen since the Civil Rights era? It could very well be exactly what a generation of Chicanos have been waiting for.  It seems, however, that the grass roots movement inspired by the need for reform, having been left on shelf way too long by congress, has long since ripened and is now falling apart like a rotting piece of fruit.  The decay has led to the fracturing of the once unified voice calling for comprehensive immigration reform. Some of the fragments have coalesced  into a rogue anti-Obama fringe who have changed their demands altogether. Some who once marched and tweeted asking of a comprehensive reform with the promise of citizenship have morphed their messaging into asking for little more than temporary ‘relief’ from deportation (without specifying what they would ask in the way of citizenship and rights that come with it).  Their position has changed from being one of strategic leverage of the vote to simply nagging the POTUS to stop deportations all by himself via the executive order.  And now, as if their intention was to deliberately lessen their ability to influence Washington in any way, these detractors of the movement are calling for abdication of the vote--very thing that defines the American experience and (if I may add) the ONLY tool that they ever had to bend Washington to their demands. This fringe Tea Party-like element is not to be confused with assertion of Chicanos in the politics of our homeland. NOT VOTING IS NOT CHICANO, AND IT IS UN-AMERICAN.

Despite the juvenile and unsophisticated attempt of some to tantrum their way into American politics, there are others who have not given up on the American way, the power of the people, La Raza Unida,  and the least of all, the VOTE. This 'Chicano Continuum'--Patriotic Mexican-Americans, Chicano scholars, artists, bikers, Military Veterans, political veteranos; along side venerated icons from the Chicano movement, and the children of Chicano activistas who have rejected the invitation to abdicate our rights as Americans and have decided to take the exact opposite approach: To Cruise to the Polls.


This November midterm election will reveal to the nation, not a defeated immigration movement, but instead a reinvigorated  Movement  of Chicano participation and self realization. A movement (ollin) when the Chicano giant makes its own migration from the sleep of obscurity and back to our seat at the table of power in American politics.  Its  promises to be without a doubt the most beautiful ride to the polls in a generation, because when Chicanos ride, we ride in style. Load up the ranfla with the 'buelitas, the Hefes, the carnales, the primos, the homies, the rucas, and the youngsters...the familia is going to vote!! 

The Cruise to the Polls promises to be the most vibrant display of American Patriotism and civic engagement we have seen in decades.  If your'e in San Diego, CA, Phoenix, AZ, Denver, CO, Albuquerque, NM, or El Paso, TX, find the homies organizing the cruise and roll with us. Follow this link and find out how to get involved. We will cruise, we will raise awareness within our gente, and we will own our right to vote and be heard in the country we built and love. QUE VIVA LA RAZA! !VIVA EL MOVIMIENTO! !VIVA EL XICANO!


For more info visit: CRUISE TO THE POLLS


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commented 2014-09-20 14:27:22 -0700 · Flag
It’s not just unAmerican to focus most of a movement on having a President ignore the law, it’s fascist. Using examples of Reagan and Bush ignoring Labor and Environmental laws, as the #not1more DHS petition does, has no place in a Civil Rights movement and none of us should have anything to do with supporting arbitrary abuse of power like that.

Blaming the Judicial or Executive branch for deportations is a lie. the Constitution does not make either responsible for the consequences of the Law.

As if that was not bad enough, they didn’t even do their research. Since the modern framework of DED and TPS was established by the 1980 Refugee Act and the 1990 Immigration Act, no president has done more by executive order than 550k (DACA). That is not even 5.5% of the 11 Million.

They also started with a broad claim that the President could stop all deportations by Executive Order. A simple review of some of the cases they used shows that the judges make clear that their are limits to executive discretion.

Their theory of change is ridiculous. So if a group of Legislators refuse your demand for a vote on #HR15, you attack their political enemy? Better than that for them, you shift the focus of our movement from blaming them for the failure of reform and onto the President. All this for what will be less than 5.5% of number we need when #HR15 will naturalize 10.7 million by 2029 (see CBO report on S744). In the history of civil rights, I don’t know of a worse national strategy; congrats.

Finally, this does not even make sense from the perspective of building grassroots power. The White House is very far from most of us. It is also very difficult for most of us to build power over a President that is no longer up for election. By comparison most people live within an hour drive of their local Congressional office. It is much easier to build relationships with civic, faith, Labor, Law Enforcement, Business, and other civic leaders to influence your local Rep. or to remove them from office and election one pledged to pass CIR.

The problem is that the incompetence of the executive strategy has not been fully called out and that we have not organized for divestment. We need a full evaluation of the executive discretion strategy. If the above is true than it should be abandoned, shifted over to organizing manuals on what no to do, and we can then move on to the project of #ElectReform.
An Independent American Voter Group merging Tip O'Neill Democrats and Ronald Reagan Republicans.