Thursday, March 31, 2005

Report on results of the TCC-NE action

By the time I arrived on-campus in the Free Speech Zone (which students who I consulted for directions had no idea even existed), the hubub had already happened. Apparently, the opposition to the Young Conservatives of Texas' scheduled "illegal immigrant round-up" was so loud and in-your-face that the lone YCT guy who'd arrived to exercise his Free Speech rights soon pulled out, leaving only (as I was told) a small sign indicating that the scheduled action by his group had been "postponed."

As I wandered into the Free Speech Zone, I encountered a quiet scene: folks from the Mid-Cities Democrats; College Democrats chapter of TCC-NE; and OLAS (Organization of Latin American Students) were standing around, quietly conversing and sharing ideas. One OLAS student wore a hand-painted CHE (Guevara) canvas as a cape, which I thought was pretty cool-looking. I set up my jambox, turning it on and up to play some movimiento music for our activist listening enjoyment. I introduced myself to some of the OLAS students, who were looking a bit restless and ready to resume their regular school day. I told them about the Rock en Espanol show at the Rose Marine Theater in mid-April, trying to encourage them to meet Latino artists in a FW venue.

Richard Gonazales, local writer and columnist arrived. David Lozano and Cesar Hernandez, with the Cara Mia Theatre, also arrived, as did Yvonne Duque, from the Rose Marine Theater. It felt like a veritable pow-wow of Chicano cultural workers. David and Cesar performed their original comedy sketch--created specifically for this event at TCC--which was both funny and insightful.

A few students wandered by, but no real civic dialogue happened, which was a shame. I kind of wished that the YCT folks had stuck around so that we could have shared some information and conversation w/ them (or at least we could have tried to). In a sense, I felt like we were doing a preparatory rehearsal for future events where we will really have to be on our toes, challenging the negativity and ignorance.

By the end of our time together, all the progressive activists and Democrats had met one another, chatted a bit, exchanged contact info, and planned future meetings. It was a beautiful sunny day to be in solidarity together.

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