HOUSTON, TX - June 19, 2017 - Arizona's ban of Mexican American Studies is heading back to the Arizona Supreme Court Monday, June 26 - June 30, 2017. That means the Librotraficante caravan is heading back to Arizona with a new shipment of banned books. Houston activists will make the 1,000+ mile ride once again to draw attention to Arizona's prohibition, to restock the underground libraries they formed during their 2012 Caravan, and to share updates on the advancement of Ethnic Studies in each state they pass through.
Activists and scholars have responded to Arizona's Suppression of Mexican American Studies (MAS) with MAS Acceleration. Ethnic Studies has spread throughout the nation in response to Arizona's ban.
The court case will be reviewed again with new evidence consisting of studies proving that the outlawed Mexican American Studies courses in Tucson increased student success. The case had been reviewed by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco which sent the case back to the AZ Supreme Court to be considered with the additional evidence.
"We were in the court room when a Federal Judge told America that if you have proof that a course helps a particular group of students succeed, yet you outlaw the course-that looks like discrimination," said Tony Diaz, El Librotraficante, one of the co-founders of the caravan. "We hope that the upcoming Arizona Supreme Court ruling will drive a stake in the heart of this Un-American law that tramples on Intellectual Freedom."
The 6-city caravan will depart from Houston, Texas 10 am, Wednesday, June 21, Casa Ramirez Folk Art Gallery, 241 W 19th St, Houston, TX 77008. Scheduled stops include San Antonio & El Paso, Texas; Las Cruces and Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Tucson, AZ.
With their 2012 Caravan, the Librotraficantes joined a nationwide movement to defy Arizona's ban and to keep it in check. Unlike Arizona's anti-immigrant law SB1070, the original "Show Me Your Papers Law" which spawned copy-cat legislation in other states and even now inspired SB4 in Texas, Arizona's anti-ethnic studies law did not spread. In fact, Ethnic Studies has spread and flourished in Texas, California and Hawaii as a result of activists, scholars, writers, students, politicians, and community members uniting.
The court case overlaps with the 2017 Xito Institute's Summer Conference Xicanx Institute For Teaching And Organizing June 30 to July 2nd. Xito serves as a base for some of the original MAS Instructors from TUSD, as well as a center for the development of teaching practices that are organic to our community.
Supporters can donate to help defray caravan costs, donate banned books, organize solidarity events, or join the Librotraficantes on the caravan. Details are available at www.Librotraficante.com, and tony@Librotraficante.com, or (713) 867-8943.
Houston, Texas Press Conference
10 am Wednesday, June 21
Casa Ramirez Folk Art Gallery
241 W 19th St, Houston, TX 77008
San Antonio, Texas Press Conference
1 PM Wednesday, June 21
El Paso, Texas Press Conference
6p Thursday, June 22
Cafe Mayapan 2000 Texas Ave.
El Paso, TX 79901
Las Cruces, New Mexico Press Conference
10 am Friday, June 23
Los Jardines, 314 South Tornillo St.
Las Cruces,NM 88001
Albuquerque, New Mexico Press Conference
6pm Friday, June 23, 2017
Los Jardines Institute
803 La Vega SW, Albuquerque, NM 87105
Tucson, Arizona Press Conference
1pm Sunday, June 25
MAS Trial Reception
403 N 6th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705-8326
AZ Ethnic Studies Ban Court Case begins.
Monday, June 26, 9 am
Arizona Superior Court in Pima County.
110 W. Congress St., Tucson, AZ 85701.