National Council of La Raza
The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) (La Raza, or The Race) is the USA's largest Latino advocacy organization. It is a group that advocates in favor of progressive immigration reform policies, including a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants and reduced deportations.
Founded in 1968, NCLR is headquartered in Washington, D.C. and has regional offices in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Miami, Phoenix, and San Antonio. NCLR has historically received three-quarters of its funding from private sources, including individuals and corporations, and one-quarter of its funding from the federal government.
In 1963, a group of Mexican Americans in Washington, D.C. formed the National Organization for Mexican American Services (NOMAS). The organization existed primarily to provide technical assistance to Hispanic groups and bring them together under one umbrella. NOMAS presented a proposal to the Ford Foundation to establish an organization that could provide technical assistance and organizational structure to the Mexican American community. The Ford Foundation hired Herman Gallegos, Julian Samora, and Ernesto Galarza to travel the Southwest and make a recommendation on how the Ford Foundation could help Mexican Americans.
Gallegos, Samora and Galarza founded the Southwest Council of La Raza (SWCLR) in Phoenix, Arizona, in 1968. SWCLR was given financial support from the Ford Foundation, the National Council of Churches, and the United Auto Workers, and the organization received 501(c)(3) status later that year.
In 1973, the SWCLR became a national organization, changed its name to the National Council of La Raza, and moved its headquarters to Washington, D.C. Early disagreements among the organization's leadership caused the Ford Foundation to threaten to withhold funding, resulting in President Henry Santiestevan's resignation and the election of Raul Yzaguirre.
The Spanish word raza is often translated into English as race. The phrase La Raza has a particular history in the context of political activism in which NCLR uses it. NCLR uses “La Raza” to refer to “the people” or “the Hispanic people of the New World."[dead link]
Beginning in about 1975, the NCLR began expanding its focus to include the issues of non-Mexican American Latinos. This policy was made official in 1979. By 1980, the NCLR was funded almost entirely by the federal government.
When the Reagan Administration reduced available federal funding, the NCLR cut back the scale of its operations. As a result, the organization began focusing on national policy and concentrating its efforts in Washington, D.C. After the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act, state governments exerted more control over the disbursement of welfare funds, which led to the development of the NCLR's Field Advocacy Project to influence decisions at the state and local levels.
Some critics, such as conservative talk radio host George Putnam, call NCLR exclusionary in its approach to civil rights. Republican congressman Charlie Norwood of Georgia's ninth district criticized congressional earmarking of four million dollars for NCLR housing initiatives. Anti-illegal immigration websites, such as American Patrol, and anti-immigration websites, such as The American Resistance, accuse NCLR of encouraging illegal immigration to the United States. Former Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO) referred to the group as the "Latino KKK".
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Criticism of "La Raza" by César Chávez
César Chávez was a critic of La Raza, stating to Peter Matthiessen of The New Yorker, "“I hear more and more Mexicans talking about la raza—to build up their pride. Some people don’t look at it as racism, but when you say ‘la raza,’ you are saying an anti-gringo thing, and it won’t stop there. Today it’s anti-gringo, tomorrow it will be anti-Negro. We had a stupid guy who just wanted to play politics with the union, and he began to whip up La Raza against the white volunteers, and even had some of the farm workers and the pickets and the organizers hung up on la raza. So I took him on. These things have to be met head on. On discrimination, I don’t even give the members the privilege of a vote, and I’m not ashamed of it. No, the whole business of discrimination can’t exist here. So often, these days, the leaders are afraid, and even though they feel strongly against racism, they will not speak out against it. If the leadership is united, then it can say, ‘All right, if you’re going to do things that way, then you’ll have to get rid of us.’ You have to speak out immediately, the first time."
Chávez friend and UFW staffer LeRoy Chatfield stated, ""That's one of the reasons (Chávez) is so upset about La Raza. The same Mexicans that ten years ago were talking about themselves as Spaniards are coming on real strong these days as Mexicans. Everyone should be proud of what they are, of course, but race is only skin-deep. It's phony and it comes out of frustration; the la raza people are not secure. They look upon Cesar as their 'dumb Mexican' leader; he's become their saint. But he doesn't want any part of it. He said to me just the other day, 'Can't they understand that that's just the way Hitler started?' A few months ago the Ford Foundation funded a la raza group and Cesar really told them off. The foundation liked the outfit's sense of pride or something, and Cesar tried to explain to them what the origin of the word was, that it's related to Hitler's concept."
Richard Garcia quotes Chavez as stating, "La Raza? Why be racist? Our belief is to help everyone, not just one race. Humanity is our belief." and noted Stan Steiner as observing that when Chavez told Chicanos this, "their faces fell" in disbelief. They had thought he was a nationalist, not a humanist."
- Pavlich, Katie (10 January 2012). "Katie Pavlich - Obama Appoints La Raza Radical to Control Domestic Policy". Townhall. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
- "The Politico 50". Politico Magazine. Retrieved 6 February 2015.
- Epstein, Reid (March 4, 2014). "National Council of La Raza leader calls Barack Obama ‘deporter-in-chief’". Politico. Retrieved 6 February 2015.
- Fox, Laura (November 6, 2014). "Latino Community Worries Obama Could Fall Short of Expectations". National Journal. Retrieved 6 February 2015.
- "About Us". National Council of La Raza. Retrieved 6 February 2015.
- Adams, Florence; Rodriguez, David. Latinos and Local Representation: Changing Realities, Emerging Theories. Taylor & Francis. p. 67. ISBN 9780815333708.
- Schaefer, Richard (2008). Encyclopedia of Race, Ethnicity, and Society. SAGE Publications. p. 934. ISBN 9781452265865.
- Anft, Michael (January 20, 2005). "Giving a Voice to Hispanics". The Chronicle of Philanthropy. Archived from the original on February 24, 2006. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
- "A National Organization". National Council of La Raza. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
- "WordReference.com". Retrieved 3 June 2106. Check date values in:
- "What does the term 'La Raza' mean?", NCLR FAQs
- Martinez, Deirdre (2008). Who Speaks for Hispanics?: Hispanic Interest Groups in Washington. SUNY Press. p. 82. ISBN 9780791493694.
- Putnam, George (2005-03-11). "One Reporter's Opinion – The Attorney General and La Raza". NewsMax. Retrieved 2006-08-25.
- Carpenter, Amanda (2005-12-02). "GOP Congress Earmarks $4 Million for Leftist Pro-Illegal Alien Group". Human Events.
- The American Resistance. "Contributors to The National Council of The Race"
- Thrush, Glenn (May 28, 2009). "Tancredo: La Raza is "Latino KKK"". Politico. Retrieved 30 March 2016.
- http://www.farmworkermovement.org/essays/essays/MillerArchive/032%20Profile%20Cesar%20Chavez.pdf[full citation needed]
- https://libraries.ucsd.edu/farmworkermovement/50th-anniversary-documentation-project-1962-1993/leroy-chatfield/[full citation needed]
- Matthiessen, Peter (2014). Sal Si Puedes (Escape If You Can): Cesar Chavez and the New American Revolution. University of California Press. p. 179. ISBN 978-0-520-95836-4.
- http://www.nytimes.com/1987/01/15/obituaries/stan-steiner-is-dead-at-62-author-consultant-teacher.html[full citation needed]
- García, Richard A. (May 1994). "César Chávez: A Personal and Historical Testimony". Pacific Historical Review 63 (2): 225–33. doi:10.2307/3640867. JSTOR 3640867.
- Steiner, Stan (1970). La raza: the Mexican Americans. New York: Harper. OCLC 1198482.[page needed]
- 2010 - César Chávez (The Ilan Stavans Library of Latino Civilization) Page 110