Corky Gonzalez' speech..docx

Corky Gonzalez' speech..docx - Colorado Springs...

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Colorado Springs Bicentennial Speech of July 4, 1976 Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzales with Crusade for Justice member Ernesto Vigil. September 19, 1975. via the Denver Post Archive You have to understand that in order to make progress, in order to gain justice from any society, you have to take a stand. So when we talk about organizing people, when we talk about organizing Chicanos, organizing La Raza, that we have to know what our contributions were to this area and to this continent. We aren’t just Chicanos, a minority in the United States of America; we are Chicanos and Latinos who are a majority of Aztlán, of México, Central America, and South America. We are a part of a majority. We have to look at it that way. We have to remember that those brothers and sisters that cross that border are the same people that came before there were was anyone out here, except the Indians. We predate 1776 by more than one hundred and eighty years. That Pike’s Peak, named after Zebulon Pike, and they say you’re a “Piker” if you’re a dummy and you get jived. Juan de Ulibarrí was here one hundred years, a whole century, before Pike ever reached here, and the indio was here possibly 50,000 years ago before he got here. So we understand that we have to look back at our history and realize what we read about. Just like the Bicentennial today, they’re talking about a revolution, but let me tell you that the people who talk about that revolution don’t know what they’re celebrating. They are celebrating that “All Men Are Created Equal,” but when they signed that Declaration of Independence, remember that they were not considering Black people, who were their slaves, they were not considering Indians, whom they considered savages and whom they were murdering; they were not considering Mexicanos, who would be the people they would conquer in 1848, a hundred years later.
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So you see, they were only considering themselves. So we have to look at that history and ask what have all the struggles been about? What about the indios and the Chicanos in Taos and in that area? When they were told that they were going to be ruled under a new flag by Governor Bent, they didn’t mess around with a celebration. They shot him with arrows, scalped, and killed him. That’s right. It took three expeditions to go in there and finally overcome those people who were in the mountains, who understood that the land and the culture and the history was theirs; it belonged to nobody else. We are the children of those people; we’re the children of Zapata, who gave his life for the idea that the land belonged to the people. We’re the children of “Pancho” Villa, who was willing to stand up for a cause and gather hundreds of thousands of Mexicanos and Yaquis to fight the oppressor and to liberate México. However, México was not liberated because the despots remained there and ran México. And today México is not liberated, nor are we liberated. We are not liberated when the prison population in Canyon
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