The return of Ozomatli to Arizona

21 02 2012

The new battleground for La Raza is Tucson, where the school boarded recently voted to ban Mexican American Studies classes in the district. Since last month, titles of those classes have changed and curriculum has changed so that no ethnic studies courses can be taught.

To that end, Ozomatli, one of my favorite bands who also happen to be very politically conscientious, set feet back in Arizona after about two years of avoiding the state because of anti-immigration legislation. The band came to raise awareness and support the cause of SaveEthnicStudies.org, which was started to fight this government oppression and now has plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed by 11 Tucson teachers.

As one who minored in ethnic studies in college, this is a fight close to my heart. The state superintendent has banned ethnic studies from being taught. BANNED. Seriously? So helping students of color better understand their identity is not allowed. Opponents say it promotes hatred and resentment of whites and others.

Laughable. Confusing. But I digress.

My wife and I went to the show last Saturday to show our support for the cause. And as usual, Ozomatli — I’m an Ozohead por vida having seen them perform live 7 or 8 times — brought the house down. And band member Raul Pacheco preached to the choir, so to speak, telling a sympathetic audience that this fight and these educators need our support.

Photos below.

The Rialto Theater in Tucson AZ

 

Stephanie and I after the show

 

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