University Professor Dr. Roberto Rodriguez Calls on Elected Officials to Condemn Death Threats Regarding the Mexican American Studies Program in TUSD
On Thursday, August 2nd, Dr. Roberto Rodriguez and local elected officials held a press conference regarding unprosecuted death threats made in response to community activism surrounding the Mexican American Studies program in TUSD. The press conference was held at TUSD headquarters, 1010 E. 10th street at 10 a.m.
The press conference was called in light of the impending trial of an individual that made several threats against Dr. Rodriguez in 2011. His trial will begin next week, on August 7th.
FULL SET: http://chrissummitt.com/blog/cintlipressconf/
On the weekend of Feb. 24th-26th, 60+ students and faculty from California State University at Northridge (CSUN), came to Tucson to support the ethnic studies struggle and learn more about the situation. On Saturday, current (former) ethnic studies students gave a panel about their experiences.
They mentioned how, ever since the books were banned and the classes taken away, they were constantly being watched. Monitors followed them on bikes. Their work was confiscated and checked for ‘ethnic solidarity’. During some classes, random administrators would come into the now defunct Chicano history classes which was changed to “american history” and type what was said in the classroom onto a laptop. The classes are cancelled and some of the public may be aware but there is so much more to what is going on as these students’ testimony reveals.
Here are a couple pictures from the panel.
If the system isn’t working for you anymore, you must leave it and make a new system. Today, UNIDOS held their own school of ethnic studies, where students could come and learn about the truths, the state is attempting to take away.
I wasn’t able to attend the whole day so I only got a few pictures. Check out my full set here: http://chrissummitt.com/blog/protestaz/unidosschool/
In preparation for the UNIDOS School of Ethnic Studies, the community came out and made some beautiful artwork.
While the institution continues to fail us, the community continues to rise. Ethnic Studies is abolished inside the gates of our schools but not the streets of our community. Education is ours, from the roots our knowledge will continue to grow with autonomous education. UNIDOS presents: School of Ethnic Studies, the first steps to reclaiming our education. Come join students, artist & supporters for a night of music, art & education!
My documentation can be seen HERE: http://chrissummitt.com/blog/protestaz/unidosart/
On 6/14/2011 UNIDOS held a 24 hr vigil in front of the TUSD headquarters to protest HB2281
FULL SET HERE:
One of the most amazing events I have ever photographed. No one expected this to happen. I attended the board meeting like I always do in support of the students defending ethnic studies. It was a pretty big turnout and I barely got a seat in the back. I had all my equipment with me just in case anything happened, and it did.
Here I was just taking some test shots of the audience to get my exposure correct, I happened to have my ultrawide on as that is what I usually start with. Minutes before the scheduled start of the meeting several students ran in to the front of the room where the board usually sits. Carrying chains they pushed through a lone security guard who tried to manhandle them before they were able to sit down. As the nine of them sat down they chained themselves to the chairs.
As soon as I see them run in I start shooting and running up to the front at the same time. Struggling with the right exposure in this dimly lit room, I gave up at one point and just put the iso as high as it could go. I had my photo bag sitting on a chair and not on my back and so when I ran up I left it, leaving me with only one lens. Luckily it was the wide angle. I got to the very front and shot everything I saw, the students pounding their fists, the crowd behind me growing. The space to shoot got tight real fast, oh how lucky I was to have had the ultrawide.
The students made their demands and were finally heard (sort of) and I captured it all. It was an inspiring event and I’ll never forget it. The rest of the story is really better told in pictures, so here they are
FULL SET HERE: