Last updated June 17, 2007
There was an article written about the Mexica Movement this week in the Los Angeles Daily News, a right wing biased newspaper, that took things out of context from the contents of the Mexica Movement website, as is usual for white supremacists. The article avoids mention of the extremist white supremacists that the author regularly supports. The article is meant to be a tool to demonized the work of the Mexica Movement. We responded with the following unedited letter that they published in an edited form that left out all references to the authors ties to white supremacists (article follows in red):
"No place in media for a biased voice"
In her opinion column published June 11, 2007, Bridget Johnson attacked the Mexica Movement, calling it a "fringe element" of the so-called larger "pro-immigration movement." Ms. Johnson has previously attacked the organization in other articles she has written for the notoriously right-wing websites worldnetdaily.com and politicalmavens.com. She does a mediocre job of presenting the philosophy of the organization. We believe that indigenous people should be able to go anywhere on this continent because it is our indigenous homeland, and that our movement from place to place on our land is a migration, not immigration.
Ms. Johnson also completely fails to mention the context in which we work. While it is true that we carry signs and posters declaring "Europeans as ILLEGALS since 1492," and "Deport White Supremacists to Europe," we do so in direct response to the assaults against our community by members of the Minutemen Project and Save Our State. Our posters aim to re-frame their argument against us, using concepts and rhetoric that they seem to understand. If Ms. Johnson finds our posters insulting, perhaps she should take a closer look at the hateful and racist slogans espoused by the white supremacists, with whom she seems to empathize. I find it particularly intriguing that Ms. Johnson's article appears one week after similar concerns were posted in on-line forums on White Supremacist websites like stormfront.org and davidduke.com. Coincidence? I think not.
Member Mexica Movement
No place in debate for separatist voice
Bridget Johnson, Columnist
Article Last Updated: 06/11/2007 05:50:18 PM PDT
There is no immigration bill that currently exists or will ever exist in the future that will come remotely close to making everyone happy.
We need to bring 12 million people out of the shadows, as said by immigration advocates, and we need to learn about their backgrounds for national security's sake. We need to acknowledge that many illegal immigrants have planted roots in the U.S., yet can't set the precedent of rewarding illegal entry. We can't have an unsecure border, yet need to welcome those workers whose skills and education fit into our economy's current needs.
Yet 'tis the season for political posturing, as parties eye Campaign 2008, and the Senate compromise legislation to overhaul the immigration system collapsed with a whimper last week. Few can dispute that an agreement needs to be reached sooner than later.
However, there are disturbing trends in the immigration movement that no legislation will solve.
It's a scene I've witnessed at all of the immigration rallies I've attended - you have the ordinary families concerned about the issue showing up with strollers in tow, sometimes waving American flags. Then fringe elements show up: the socialists handing out their newspapers, other left-wing causes hoping to find new adherents, and the Mexica Movement.
To say that this group does the pro-immigration movement absolutely no good is an understatement. Many Americans are wary of reconquista aims voiced over the years by groups such as MEChA. But the Mexica Movement - largely composed of young people, from what I've seen at events - minces no words about its aims, which are broader and accompanied by more disturbing rhetoric.
"We are slaves of the parasitic genocidal Europeans," states the Mexica Movement's philosophy, and another online Mexica article states about Europeans that "a cancer must be removed and parasites must also be removed, for the sake of your life as a healthy human being."
According to the Mexica Movement, begun in 1993, all Western Hemisphere borders are considered European and illegal, and North America is its indigenous nation of "Anahuac" of the "Nican Tlaca" people. The concept of the Aztlan homeland (territory purchased by the U.S. at the end of the Mexican-American War) is criticized for recognizing European borders.
Che Guevara is even panned for being too European: "Che was an Argentine, European descent, not our people!" states the Mexica Movement's Web site. "We don't need no pinche Che!"
The Mexica Movement is a Los Angeles-based nonprofit organization, well-organized and omnipresent with the slickest signs and literature at rallies, that calls Latinos who protest illegal immigration "self haters," traitors and more: "The only rational comparison would be to the numerous Jewish Nazis who worked for Hitler and somehow rationalized sending their own brothers and sisters to concentration camps, and in some cases personally firing the ovens," as written on the Mexica Web site's report of a December 2005 protest. After all, "individualism is treason," notes their philosophy statement.
"Where's your anger and your confrontation of this occupation and ongoing colonization? ... But we care more about 6 million Jews.
"... Participation in liberation is not a choice, it is an obligation. ... We need a new generation of warriors."
Liberation, they claim, will be aided by demographic shifts. "We were only 4% in the 1970 census. We were 14% in the 2000 census. We are projected to be 25% in 2020. We are projected to be over 50% of the population of the 'Western USA' in 2050. We will easily be the majority of the population of the 'USA' in 2100. We've got to be prepared for liberation then by getting knowledge now."
What is clearly visible at the immigration rallies is two camps - the American-flag-waving, pro-immigration Latinos and the America-bashing pro-reconquistas who decry the terms Hispanic (too Spanish) and Latino (too Roman). While some marchers chant "USA!" others encourage resistance and revolution.
And only one of those groups will win a fair deal for immigrant families as well as their host country. Before real, tough, righteous immigration reform can be accomplished, camps on both sides of the issue need to completely disassociate themselves from extremists.
"It's not as if Europeans are being asked to go into the Atlantic Ocean," adds a Mexica Movement statement. "They have a beautiful home called Europe."
Bridget Johnson writes for the Daily News and blogs at insidesocal.com/friendlyfire. Write to her by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.