The victory of the Houston Astros in the World Series of Baseball serves to underscore the saying that if it is worth fighting for, you keep at it until you win. For the first time in the team’s history, the Astros can say they did it. I am sure there were many proud people in Texas who saw the Astros make history. And I am sure there will be a lot turning out for a victory parade in Houston. Congratulations to the Astros!!!
In this issue of La Voz we are highlighting the Texas Book Festival. This annual event in Austin, Texas gives authors and readers an opportunity to come together and listen to the latest in thought and wisdom from writers who work day and night to put words in print. We have chosen to spotlight the growing number of Latino writers who come to Austin for discussion sessions and book signings. If you have a chance, go out to the Book Festival and discover someone new.
On pages six and seven you will find an interesting report on the declining use of Spanish among Latinos in the United States. Using Census data, the Pew Research Center analyzed by metropolitan areas, the use of Spanish among those five years and older. In San Antonio, Texas, the results shows that less and less Latinos are speaking Spanish. If as some say, language is the foundation of culture, what does the decline of the speaking of Spanish mean for Latinos? Does it contribute to a decline in music sales in Spanish? Could it mean a decline in the audience size of television in Spanish?
On pages 8 and 9 you will find an interview with Dr. José Angel Gutiérrez. During the early years of the Chicano Movement, he was one of four individuals who spearheaded the growing social protest of the day. He was also one of the founders of MAYO, the Mexican American Youth Organization and the Raza Unida Party. For many of us who grew up in South Texas and participated in the Chicano Movement, Jose Angel was the guy who showed us how not to be afraid. His sense of self, pride and yes, even his arrogance at times, showed us that it was we didn’t have walked with our heads bowed down.
The Chicano Movement was a time when many things were happening at a very quick pace. I don’t recall ever having time to reflect and absorb the many things that were going on all around us. Today with the passage of time and a bit of slowing down by many of us who are now entering the last phase of our lives, it is indeed a pleasure to read what Jose Angel put into print. It is indeed revealing to more fully
understand what was going on given that many of us were teenagers when we first got involved in the business of social change. Check out the more than 10 books that Gutierrez has written and you will be surprised at how connecting the dots will help you understand the other side of the story.