Back in the 1950s how were Hispanics treated in the Civil Rights Movements?
How about if you were a light brown skin puerto rican? Do you have to go to the whites or the blacks places? How about if there was a white puerto rican? Also how about dark dominicans? Will they label as black? Puerto ricans are different colors so did that matter to the people back then?
- 3 years agoFavorite Answer
The Chicano Movement emerged during the Civil Rights era with three goals: restoral of land, rights for farm workers and education reforms. Prior to the 1960s, however, Latinos lacked influence in the national political arena. That changed when the Mexican American Political Association worked to elect John F. Kennedy president in 1960, establishing Latinos as a significant voting bloc.
After Kennedy was sworn into office, he showed his gratitude toward the Latino community by not only appointing Hispanics to posts in his administration but also by considering the concerns of the Hispanic community. As a viable political entity, Latinos, particularly Mexican Americans, began demanding that reforms be made in labor, education and other sectors to meet their needs.
A Movement with Historic Ties
When did the Hispanic community’s quest for justice begin? Their activism actually predates the 1960s. In the 1940s and ’50s, for example, Hispanics won two major legal victories. The first—Mendez v. Westminster Supreme Court—was a 1947 case that prohibited segregating Latino schoolchildren from white children. It proved to be an important predecessor to Brown v. Board of Education, in which the U.S. Supreme Court determined that a “separate but equal” policy in schools violated the Constitution. In 1954, the same year Brown appeared before the Supreme Court, Hispanics achieved another legal feat in Hernandez v. Texas. In this case, the Supreme Court ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment guaranteed equal protection to all racial groups, not just blacks and whites.
In the 1960s and '70s, Hispanics not only pressed for equal rights, they began to question the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. This 1848 agreement ended the Mexican-American War and resulted in America acquiring territory from Mexico that currently comprises the Southwestern U. S. During the Civil Rights Era, Chicano radicals began to demand that the land be given to Mexican Americans, as they believed it constituted their ancestral homeland, also known as Aztlán. In 1966, Reies López Tijerina led a three-day march from Albuquerque, N.M., to the state capital of Santa Fe, where he gave the governor a petition calling for the investigation of Mexican land grants. He argued the U.S.’s annexing of Mexican land in the 1800s was illegal.
Activist Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzales, known for the poem “Yo Soy Joaquín,” or “I Am Joaquín,” also backed a separate Mexican-American state. The epic poem about Chicano history and identity includes the following lines: “The Treaty of Hidalgo has been broken and is but another treacherous promise. / My land is lost and stolen. / My culture has been raped.”
Farm Workers Make Headlines
Arguably the most well-known fight Mexican Americans waged during the 1960s was that to secure unionization for farm workers. To sway grape growers to recognize United Farm Workers--the Delano, Calif., union launched by Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta--a national boycott on grapes began in 1965. Grape pickers went on strike, and Chavez went on a 25-day hunger strike in 1968. At the height of their fight, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy visited the farm workers to show his support. It took until 1970 for the farm workers to triumph. That year, grape growers signed agreements acknowledging UFW as a union.
Philosophy of a Movement
Students played a central role in the Chicano fight for justice. Notable student groups include United Mexican American Students and Mexican American Youth Association. Members of such groups staged walkouts from schools in Denver and Los Angeles in 1968 to protest Eurocentric curriculums, high dropout rates among Chicano students, a ban on speaking Spanish and related issues. By the next decade, both the Department of Health, Education and Welfare and the U.S. Supreme Court declared it unlawful to keep students who couldn’t speak English from getting an education. Later, Congress passed the Equal Opportunity Act of 1974, which resulted in the implementation of more bilingual education programs in public schools.
Not only did Chicano activism in 1968 lead to educational reforms, it also saw the birth of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, which formed with the goal of protecting the civil rights of Hispanics. It was the first organization dedicated to such a cause.
The following year, hundreds of Chicano activists gathered for the First National Chicano Conference in Denver. The name of the conference is significant as it marks the term “Chicano's” replacement of "Mexican." At the conference, activists developed a manifesto of sorts called “El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán,” or “The Spiritual Plan of Aztlán.”
- Anonymous3 years ago
The rules during Jim Crow were not exactly the same as they were during slavery.
During Jim Crow all of those persons you mentioned were exempt unless you were mistaken for being African-American but if you were able to prove you were Dominican or Puerto Rican then you could stay in the restaurant or remain in the front seat of the bus.
Only the African-American was subjected to the ill treatment or those brown folk who didn't have their documents on them.
- 3 years ago
Uptight rhymes with white for a reason.
- VinceLv 73 years ago
The Hispanic label is relatively new. It was introduced in 1970 by the Census Bureau.
Hispanics generally were generally accepted as white before then. Especially Mexican/Spanish Americans whose ancestors, centuries prior, had colonized and settled what eventually became the western United States. After the Mexican American war, many people of Mexican descent were given automatic citizenship and were cinsidered white unless they had heavy Native American ancestry. One of the only places that Mexican Americans suffered any intolerance was in rural Texas. This was due to animosity left over for Texas's War of Independence from Mexico.
Puerto Ricans on the other hand are much more recent, having immigrated in the 1950s. The problem that Puerto Rican immigrants faced was the fact that many had obvious black ancestry. Also, the fact that other immigrants had already well established themselves on the east coast made the puerto Ricans seem like foreigners and undesirables.