Archive for June 14th, 2018

Who was our last first round draft choice in the MLB draft to make it to the ‘Stros?

We won one yesterday! Here is from State Rep. Carol Alvarado:

Dear Friends,  

We can claim victory today as the State Board of Education (SBOE) voted to name Texas’ new high school Mexican American history course, “Ethnic Studies: Mexican American Studies.”

The SBOE heard and responded affirmatively to the voices of Latino leaders from across the state who testified at yesterday’s board meeting.  This is a historic day for scholars, advocates, educators, and leaders who have put in their time and effort to finally make this course a reality.  I was proud to take part in this successful journey.


Rep. Alvarado certainly made compelling points that I laid out here the last couple of days.

The number of speakers who attended Tuesday’s hearing certainly made an impression.

I don’t think anyone got up to support the language that Latinos were speaking out against.

There really wasn’t a constituency for the proposed title that Latinos had a problem with.

In the end, it is probably good policy to allow us to name the studies program that is about us. Don’t you think?

Here is from Tony Diaz:

TX Democrats & Republicans Unite to Endorse Mexican American Studies!

Today the Texas State Board of Education made history by unanimously voting to endorse Mexican American Studies statewide! 

Texas becomes the first state in the nation to formally support Mexican American Studies via state board of education policy.

The course “Ethnic Studies: Mexican American Studies” will pave the way for other Ethnic Studies courses, too. This has been the intent from day one.

Mexican American Studies will fine tune the process, the paperwork, and the curriculum and other aspects to then help create Ethnic Studies: African American Studies, Ethnic Studies: Native American Studies, and so on, and so on, and so on.

The TX SBOE also supported the curriculum developed by the Houston Independent School District titled “Special Topics – Social Studies – Mexican American Studies”. That too is an important pillar that helps all 1,200+ Texas school districts more practically implement the culturally relevant material. 

The issue was side-tracked due to a name change briefly imposed on the field of study. However, yesterday experts, students, community members and TX SBOE members engaged in deep and intelligent discussions during public testimony on the issue. And today, the TX SBOE members voted unanimously to redub and thus launch Mexican American Studies.  The final procedural vote is Friday.

There are so many people to thank. I’ll be doing that in subsequent email blasts, radio broadcasts and essays!

So many people have worked so hard on this for so long that it was important to get the news out first. 

We stand on the shoulders of generations of leaders and thinkers who came before us, and we were inspired and fueled by all the elected officials, scholars, activists, artists, students, community members, educators, and so many others who love this field, love education, and love our community. 

The year after Arizona overturns its ban of Mexican American Studies, Texas propels Mexican American Studies into classrooms. This truly is a renaissance.

Please join us to celebrate and spread MAS at the 3rd Annual Tejas Foco Summit.

More info and more celebrations to come. 

Long live Mexican American Studies.

—Tony Diaz, El Librotraficante

Here is from the Statesman:

Heeding the calls of scholars and activists who said a proposed name for a Mexican-American studies course was insulting, the State Board of Education tentatively approved changing the name Wednesday.

Instead of “Ethnic Studies: An Overview of Americans of Mexican Descent,” the high school social studies elective course will be called “Ethnic Studies: Mexican American Studies” if given final approval by the board.

Although leaving “Ethnic Studies” in the title was proposed by board member Georgina Cecilia Pérez, a Democrat from El Paso, fellow Democrats took issue with it. They wanted the name of the course simply to be “Mexican American Studies,” but ultimately joined Republicans in the unanimous vote.

“Obviously, the fact that ‘Mexican American Studies’ is in the title is important,” said board member Ruben Cortez, D-Brownsville, adding that he hoped the board would strike “Ethnic Studies” from the title if activists protest its inclusion.

Pérez said she had proposed putting “Ethnic Studies” in the name because she wanted to set a precedent for other ethnic studies courses to be developed. Republicans on the board agreed.

“I hope we don’t lose sight over the furor of the name that we have passed a very strong course in Mexican-American studies,” said board member Marty Rowley, R-Amarillo.

The board in April voted to start developing a Mexican-American studies course but conservatives on the Republican-led, 15-member board feared that putting “Mexican American” in the title would promote divisiveness and un-American values. Many Democrats on the board decried the name as a form of discrimination.

Some of the Republican members on Wednesday said they felt more comfortable with adding “Mexican American” into the title after hearing from more than 40 Mexican-American scholars and activists during the board’s meeting Tuesday. Testifiers said the title approved in April didn’t reflect the identity of Mexican-Americans nor an established area of study.

Christopher Carmona, a professor and among those protesting the previous name, said he would have preferred the course title to exclude “Ethnic Studies” because the name doesn’t align with college course offerings, but said he was pleased with Wednesday’s vote.

Carmona said he and others will work to ensure that the board doesn’t make drastic changes to the curriculum standards.

On Wednesday, the board also approved adding to the “Mexican American Studies” curriculum that students must “discuss ways Americans interpret” citizenship.

“When you say ‘how Americans view citizenship’ rather than just talking about the different interpretations of citizenship, it creates an us versus them mentality, that Mexican-Americans are not considering themselves Americans,” Carmona said.

Texas would be among the first states to offer a Mexican-American studies course in public schools. The Tucson school district in Arizona has had such a program beginning in the 1990s, but it has undergone legal challenges that eliminated it for a time.

Here is the Trib story: https://www.texastribune.org/2018/06/13/mexican-american-studies-vote/.

Commentary enthusiastically supports this on Dem Super Delegates. Here is from Politico:

Under (DNC Chair Tom) Perez’s proposal, which appears to have the backing of a majority of DNC members, superdelegates would continue to exist but be barred from voting during the first round of the presidential roll-call vote. They could vote during the second round or any subsequent roll call, and superdelegates would still be permitted to support any candidate they want. Superdelegates would also be allowed to vote on any rules or platform issues.

Here is the entire story: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/06/13/democrats-superdelegates-congress-645134.

Apparently, some Dem member of Congress are whining. Well, keep whining. Super Delegates getting to choose is a bad system. It is not really true representation. Go get in line and be a regular delegate like the rest of the folks. Quit acting like an elite!

Alex Bregman of course was our first round (second overall) pick in 2015 and is now in the bigs.

We are still a half game behind the Mariners. I look at the bright side. We have 13 games remaining this season with the Mariners.



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