Thanks to Galen, my brother, for the pictures. Click the fullscreen button for a better view.
Transcript below. Sunday evening update: I made a slight correction to the original, so if there was a problem when you tried to listen, try again. Everything’s working now. Also, apologies to Spanish speakers for my terrible pronunciation.
As the sound of Son Jarocho, traditional music from the Mexican state of Veracruz, echoed off the walls of the Capitol, more than 1000 people prepared to march across downtown Austin on May 1st to demand reforms of immigration policy. They had rallied to almost an hour of impassioned speeches from grassroots organizers – like Wendolnya Menses from the Workers Defense Project.,
The march set off down Congress Avenue, stretching a few city blocks. There was music
– even a brigade of moms with babies in their strollers. Placards and banners called for the shut down of the Hutto family Detention center, an end to immigration raids on workplaces, and a halt to construction on the border wall. Maria Rodriguez said hard-working immigrants, like her parents, should be made citizens.:
As marchers crossed Cesar Chavez Street and converged on City Hall, Jeshua, a college student, stood in his high school graduation robes. He asked Congress to pass the DREAM Act, which would create a path for undocumented youth to citizenship.:
The march was all but ignored by the local TV news media, as journalists stoked fears of the so-called swine flu
. The disease appears to have originated in Veracruz near a sprawling corporate hog farm built just after the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement, but the media hype hasn’t explored that angle of the story. It didn’t scare immigrants and their allies out of coming together in the streets to celebrate May Day, either.
This has been a Mediahacker.org podcast. I’m Ansel Herz in Austin. Thanks for listening.