Talk:Plan Espiritual de Aztlán

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I moved some info over from the MEChA page, since I thought discussion of El Plan belonged over here, instead of culttering up the MEChA page.

Some inaccuracies in the original article: MEChA does consider El Plan foundational (viewing just about any MEChA chapter website will confirm that). Also, it's a matter of debate whether El Plan is separatist, so I thought that controversy was better handled by quoting and explaining both sides, as before.

As an aside, I do recommend you get to know some MEChA folks -- my experience with them is that they are decent people, motivated by educational excellence and not by racism at all. And I'm about as guedo as you can get. That's not to say you won't find any radicals in a MEChA chapter. You can just as well find white racists in a Southern Baptist church; doesn't mean that the SBC as an organization is itself racist. For about 95% of MEChistas, it's simply the Chicano educational organization on campus, nothing more. Take a look around at some of their chapter organizations -- it's about educational excellence and promoting Chicano culture. They organize folkloricos, not lynchings of gringos. Cashton 19:44, 10 Jun 2004 (UTC)


Since the purported "racism" of the document is a matter of dispute, I have removed the article from the "Racism" category in the interest of NPOV. The article was categorized by a user named Lokifer with no User page who did not defend the categorization. The issue of perceived separatism within the Mexican American community is a contentious one, especially in the debate revolving around illegal immigration. Indeed, the article's focus on the "controversial statements" leads me áto suspect that this article was written by an anti-immigration activist, or at least from the perspective of one. If the article ought to be re-categorized under racism, I'd like to see some justification for it.--Rockero 17:09, 3 November 2005 (UTC)

The literal translation is "For the Race, everything."[edit]

Now we are stretching.

The translation "By the Race, everything; outside of the Race, nothing" is absurd. Very clearly, and in the context of the Mexican-surpremecist rhetoric of the entire document, the proper translation is "For the Race."

It is unfortunate that such ham-fisted bias is often allowed to go unchecked on Wikipedia. A group that refers to itself as "THE RACE" is not deemed to be "racist?" Why? This is the very definition of racism. I am recategorizing this entry under "Racism."Zuzim 19:05, 9 December 2005 (UTC)

I tend to agree about translating "For the Race" in the broad sense that is being attempted. If you have read the document there is a true sentiment towards returning "Astlan" back to its original owners, "the brown people".

Mecha in reality does promote education and ethnic pride which is fine. What isn't appreciated is the anti-anglo sentiment that sometimes accompanies the organization.

"Everything for the race" is slanted in favour of critics while "By the People, everything" is also slanted in favour of apologists. Within this context, "the raza" refers to "the chicano", the accurate translation should be "For the Chicano (people), everything". Whether the statement express solidarity or hostility is open to interpretation imo. Vapour

Since there are various possible translations I think we should avoid endorsing one and should try to present the range of possibilities. The matter of the translation appears to be central to criticisms of the group. -Will Beback 21:22, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
Very well said, Will. I (as well as my peers) always read it as "from the race, everything, (from) outside the race, nothing," implying the support we could expect. Reggaedelgado 05:14, 3 June 2006 (UTC)
Hmmm. there are two issues here. the translation of "the raza" and "por" I believe I did proper POV attribution. Now "for the race" is attributed to the critics while "for the people" is attributed to the apologist/defenders. So my edit is more NPOV, imo.
As of "the raza", the edit state that "Raza"'s meaning is context sensitive. However, "the Raza=the people" isn't accurate because everyone know that the people, in this context, doesn't refers to the american people or the entire human race. It appear that "the raza" reference is somewhere in the spectrum between race and ethinicity. As long as the nuance of "the raza" is well explained, it should be o.k. to present "the raza=Chicano" as an alternative (and possibly the most neutral translation) given the context of Mecha.
As of "por", i guess this is actually more controvercial because it define the nuaince of the whole sentence. Here is translation of por. [1] I can't see "by" or "from". This is not a noun so it doesn't develope special reference like raza. The semantic should be specifically gramatical. In this instance, por express "advantage". So unless someone can present some source from spanish/english dictionary or grammer books which say otherwise, por=for should be NPOV translation. Lastly, good translation ought to respect the original words order as much as one can. That is why I kept "For ?????, everything".
Anyway, I hear that the whole document unambiguously express a nationalistic sentiment so I don't see what the fuss is. Vapour

I inserted () into chicano while I left la raza translation to race/people. Vapour

After a bit of reading I have revised the translation of "La Raza". "La Raza" in this context specifically refers to "La raza de bronce", the bronze race, as opposed to white or black race. Therefore, the reference is explicitly racial when it was uttered in 1960s. Of course, the current mecha members may not hold the view which originate way back in 1920s but that is a separate issue from what the words historically meant in the document. Vapour

The Motto[edit]

This is strange. According to MEChA of CSUS [Source], it states that motto is actually, “La Union Hace La Fuerza.”. I don't know if it's exactly true. Can you guys help me out with this?! SkinnerIJA 20:25, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

True. You can view the MEChA article, or the [National MEChA] website. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Mistitle, No mention of author[edit]

1 - the whole document should probably go into the wiki-commons, being short and non-copyrighted. 2 - the document is actually called El Plan de Aztlán, and the preamble ("In the spirit..." until the "Program" heading) is called El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán. Probably should be redirected. 3 - Why is there no mention of the author, Alurista? The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) .

I have been wanting to tackle this for a rewrite for quite some time. It appears to be written from the starting point of recent MEChA controversies, rather than as an outgrowth of the Chicano Youth Conference that, in many ways, initiated the Chicano Movement. It is part of one of Wikipedia's systematic problems: articles written by people who are not experts and/or don't have encyclopedic knowledge on a topic. Most of the literature refers to the plan by its spiritual title, but I agree that whatever title it had in the original should be preferred, with redirects, but if they are actually two different parts of the same text, that should be explained in the article. As for Alurista as author, my best guess is that it is primarily due to his not having a Wikipedia article yet-- but it's about time the Poet laureate of Aztlan did. Want to give this article's rewrite a shot?--Rockero 01:22, 18 January 2006 (UTC)
  • This subject merits both an article and a wikicommons upload. Joaquin Murietta 16:40, 19 January 2006 (UTC)

La Raza[edit]

"Por La Raza todo. Fuera de La Raza nada" is often translated by the critics as "Everything for the Race, nothing for [those who are] outside of the Race". On the other hand, many MEChA members claim that it is "By the People, everything; outside of the People, nothing." Many people within MEChA understand this as a sentiment similar to "United we stand, divided we fall".[2] Alternatively, the phrase can be translated as "For the (Chincanos) race, everything. Outside of the (Chincano) race, nothing" as Por=for in this instance is more linguistically correct translation.

The term La Raza, while translating directly to "race", in this instance, refers "La Raza de bronce", the bronze race, a term coined by early 20th century Latin American writers to refer to the mestizo race that arose in America with the arrival of (Spanish) European colonisers and their intermingling with the indigenous population. However, when the term was revived in El Plan Espiritual de Aztlan in 1960s, La Raza (de bronce) was recoined to refer to Latinos in the United States and the people in Mexico as a unified "race", similar to the black and white races. In this sense it is largely synonymous to the notion of the Chicano nation. The decision to call it a separate race may have been influenced by the contemporary negative views of "ethnic" or "nation" based nationalism and positive views of "race" based nationalism.

La Raza de bronce is also often interchangily refered as "La Raza Cósmica", which emphasise the mixed nature of mestizo race. The term means "the cosmic race", which embodies the notion that traditional, exclusive concepts of race and nationality can be transcended in the name of humanity's common destiny. It originally referred to a movement by Mexican intellectuals during the 1920s arguing Mexicans have the blood of all the world's races (white, black, Arab, Amerindian and Asian) and therefore transcend the world. It should be noted that the term la raza is widely used throughout Latin America, not just by Mexican American and has additional layers of meaning referring to the sense of collective culture and consciousness of Spanish speakers of the New World. In Spain, la raza refers to Spanish. The Comumbus day which was celebrated under the title in Spain as the Día de la Raza ("day of the race") was changed to "Día de la Hispanidad." In Spain, the "race" of reference in the original name was that of the Spanish people and did not reflect the mestizo characterization found in many Latin American countries. In Latin America (and in some Latino communities in the USA), the day is still celebrated as the Día de la Raza, commemorating the first encounters of Europe and the Americas which would produce the new Mestizo race, culture, and identity. La raza, hence, imply "us", similar to the German word volk, which literally means "folk" (people) but is similarly difficult to translate to other languages because the term has attained highly politicised meaning. However, the broadest demacation of la Raza is spanish language speakers and specifically exculde indigenous native population who has not assimilated to Spanish speaking colonists. They are refered as Indigena, and are distinguished from la Raza.

Spoken like a true appologist. Dullfig 18:39, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

I have moved this text from the main article space since it focuses on translating and defining "La Raza". If this information can be verified, it (or some version of it) should be moved to the "La Raza" article. A brief mention of the controversy surrounding the definition/translation of "Raza" ought to be mentioned in the controversy section under the quote "Por la raza todo, fuera de la raza nada," but we don't need this lengthy deviation from the topic of the article in the main space.--Rockero 17:05, 27 June 2006 (UTC)

Text of the Plan[edit]

I'm unsure what the Wikisource tag means. Does it mean that that section will be moved from the larger article? I hope this is not the case, as I think having the actual text here adds to the article. In regards to it being "unencyclopedic", it is not uncommon for encyclopedias to include the whole text of the entry that is referenced if the text is not excessive in length, so I don't really see the problem.—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Criticisms and responses[edit]

We don't seem to have sources for the criticisms, or for the responses. Unless someone know where this info came from it should be deleted. -Will Beback 20:11, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

The criticisms could be expanded. There are other examples of outright seperatist sentiment and what could easily be considered racism.

"...we declare the independence of our mestizo nation. We are a bronze people with a bronze culture. Before the world, before all of North America, before all our brothers in the bronze continent, we are a nation, we are a union of free pueblos, we are Aztlán."

"Where we are a majority, we will control; where we are a minority, we will represent a pressure group; nationally, we will represent one party: La Familia de La Raza!"

These statements are nothing but racist and seperatist, and almost all MEChA chapters use EL Plan de Aztlan. After all, it does say

"Awareness and distribution of El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán. Presented at every meeting, demonstration, confrontation, courthouse, institution, administration, church, school, tree, building, car, and every place of human existence."

It is irresponsible to bicker over whether or not they are racist and seperatist, they prove it themselves. They would not use such material if it was not what they as a group believe. As an example, a white activist group could not present plans like these on all of their chapter websites, but then tell you they don't really believe in it, and expect you to believe that. Only because they are Hispanic we are worrying about it, when we shouldn't be. They are no different than a white seperatist group, only the skin color is different.

It is generaly accepted that articles in Wikipedia contain information on the subject, and then maybe a criticism section. We can't have a response to criticism seciton. Prety soon we'll have a rebutal secition, and a counter rebutal, and it will never end. If you feel that there is a need to counter criticism, then maybe the main section is not being presented properly, and should be modified accordingly. Dullfig 16:58, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
agree. glad it's gone. danedouard00 20:21, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

La Raza[edit]

For everyone trying to say Raza more means people, where do you think it came from? Raza came from the Old Italian word Razza, which meant race or cultural heritage, and diffused into spanish and french from there, and then became the word Race in English. (talk) 06:18, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

The Official Thing The Hispanics Are Being Framed For[edit]

Is there any precedent for a passionate and outraged accusation that someone else is being unjustly framed for planning a separatist movement? I don't get the sense that Hispanic families in America live in constant fear of being portrayed as collectively wanting to secede from the union. Is there anyone who really believes that racial abuse of Hispanics is based on claims that they harbor aspirations for ruling a Mojave Desert hermit kingdom? (talk) 03:27, 28 June 2011 (UTC) Admiral Electric

But then again, you get home from the Dead show, got a few new ideas swirling around in your head, why not give the modern-day Indians a homeland where they can practice their special rituals and dances? And why not just make it Southern California? You could probably still hang out and do your own thing as long as you followed the new Indian laws for restructuring white society in Socal! Print it up, pass it along, go home and smoke're the Jefferson of your own Chicano folk culture citadel! (talk) 03:57, 28 June 2011 (UTC) Admiral Electric