Manuel Pérez, quoted in the The Desert Sun recently:
Solis’ legislation gives the Interior Department three years to study sites “significant to the life of César E. Chávez and the farm labor movement in the western United States.” Officials will examine ways to preserve the sites and interpret them to the public.
…… “This goes beyond just honoring him because it helps in so many ways,” Perez said. “He was always very family-oriented and an advocate for leadership development, youth development. The fact that we can dedicate these spaces in our communities for families and youth is such a positive thing.” Perez, who recalls working on the farms as a child, said his parents were migrant farmworkers who settled in Coachella. Now Perez is a school board member for the Coachella Valley Unified School District and a candidate for state assembly, which he said reminds him to “appreciate the sacrifices of people like Chávez who did it in order to build up our communities.”
Crossposted at Daily Kos
Also quoted, our own Joe Mota:
“It’s a beginning and a good start to honoring a man that did so much for the plight of farmworkers,” said Joe Mota of Cathedral City. Mota worked for UFW as regional director for Southern California from 2001-06.
“He was a very spiritual man,” Mota added, “and giving him parks is an honorable way to remember him because not only did he care for people but he cared so much about nature.”
This bodes well for The Desert Sun, let’s hope.
It’s a treat to find unsolicited positive press on your candidate in the morning paper, and perhaps it’s a trend away from the usual RW worlitzer fare. Today they ran an editorial supporting the legislation to honor Chavez, and weeks ago The Desert Sun lauded Eddie Garcia, the new mayor of Coachella, for his rapid success in attracting businesses and providing civic services, just as he said he would.
César Chávez so shaped many lives in this district. It’s no coincidence that Manuel Pérez devoted his career to his community, that Joe Mota and Eddie Garcia did the same, and that they’re supporting Pérez’s run for State Assembly. The UFW isn’t just a political ally or a social issue for Pérez, it’s family.
Last night Democrats of the Desert presented Kian Kaeni of People for the American Way at the Peppertree Bookstore in LA Quinta. DoD members, DWD and other club members, and Manuel and Gladys and Amalia were there. We talked about winning in the CA 80th, which was a priority for Kian, though the regional PFAW offices are now closing. (New election cycle, new PFAW org structure. Kian was philosophical about it.) Kian believes that given the intransigence of the CA 45th voting patterns so far, we need to first win the 80th to win the 45th.
We talked about the gap between registration and actual voting, especially in Imperial County where Dems should dominate on election day, but so far we don’t. This brought up questions about the southeastern end of the 80th, and Manuel Pérez had the answers. Manuel brought our group of western Coachella Valley Democrats up to date on the Democratic organizations in Mecca, Brawley, Calexico, also the newly formed Eastern Coachella Valley Democratic club. Few knew how much good news there is for Democrats lately in the local Latino community.
This candidate knows the whole district. He lives the labor movement, the school reform issue, the healthcare crisis, and he’s completely committed to his community. This is what the people-powered politics looks like in the 80th.
Let’s put some energy into my Californians for Manuel Pérez Act Blue page, my fellow dfh brethren. Manuel Pérez is exactly what we’re talking about. For Pérez, the UFW is part of his life. He doesn’t need to build alliances with labor, he can just call his parents to the podium. They met working these fields. It’s good that Representative Solis introduced HR 359 which will honor Chávez appropriately, and it’s good that so many of the generation to follow Chávez honors his work with their own.
Speaking of the Perez family, if you’re in the Coachella Valley, don’t miss the party:
Birthday Bash Fundraiser
Bring $35 for Manuel’s 35th
July 28, 2007
38-300 Rancho Los Coyotes, Indio
Come celebrate and enjoy food, drinks, & music.
Calitics Event Calendar listing (with map)