UFW (First Draft, unedited)
by Ricardo Bueyhombre

Note: This is an archived site, and most of what’s here is very dated. Those who are not connected with UFW or the recent Si Se Puede demonstrations should glance at the previous posting (”The Black Brown Moonbow Party”) for directions to articles I may have recommended recently. Each piece on this site is designed for a very specific audience.

I have a lot of respect for the United Farm Workers. They should be applauded for their many efforts and accomplishments.

That said, I believe that they are following an old paradigm for change when it comes to their recent Si Se Puede demands. The powers that be may concede on this or that point, and jumping through the usual activist hoops may be worthwhile regarding particular issues. However, in terms of the Big Picture — particularly (lasting, meaningful) immigration reform — it’s clear that there’s a window of opportunity that begs to be embraced.

In my view, it’s time for the UFW to join hands with other “disgruntled” groups in the state to take over the gubernatorial reins. Most citizens have no idea how much a Governor of California can do unilaterally — with not so much as a discussion with politicians who represent the powers that be — which could benefit the vast majority of citizens statewide virtually overnight. In terms of creating effective pressure on public officials, and — most importantly — with regard to helping the public to self-educate about urgent matters. And it is on that count, that I urge UFW people to move in solidarity with TOSCA (Taking Over the State of California).

TOSCA had the imprimatur of the late Howard Zinn, who was very aligned with the spirit of Cesar Chavez. And there are many high profile figures worldwide in support of it today, including Gustavo Esteva (Mexico), Marie Trigona (Argentina), Henry Giroux (Canada), Devinder Sharma (India), and John Ross (Mexico/U.S.). TOSCA has been radically tweaked of late, to acknowledge recent discoveries/developments on the activist front. And it awaits feedback from the UFW to ensure that it serves the agenda of that organization. The OLD version of it can be found at http://planetgreen.discovery.com/work-connect/pumping-green-iron-calif ornia.html.

I pray that the UFW people who I contact respecting this plea will not dismiss our efforts prematurely. I realize that there are legal parameters (and other considerations) which must be honored in order to move meaningfully in solidarity. The main question to consider at this juncture, I believe, has to do with whether or not those in a position of influence within the UFW can spare the heartbeats to discuss what TOSCA has in mind… so that this sound bite does not serve as our only representation of intention or potential.

In short, TOSCA aims to have twelve unaffiliated, non-politician citizens serving as Governor of California together (on an equal basis) in lieu of having a single, self-serving careerist at the helm (once again). UFW should have deep representation within that coalition. [Pause.] Being on board together will not demand anywhere near as much energy as what the UFW supporters expended the other day for their demonstration in Salinas (for the next six months!). And TOSCA fully intends to operate on a zero budget.

Let’s pray that that last statement is intriguing enough to set up a rendezvous sooner rather than later. If not, please see “‘Suggestions’ for the UFW”.

Blessings in solidarity,
Ricardo Bueyhombre
Richard Martin Oxman
1713 Jennifer Drive
in the Vienna Woods of Aptos, CA 95003
831-688-8038 at any hour