Today marks the 81st anniversary of the birth of a great civil and human rights champion. Why aren’t we celebrating this day (legal holiday) in Oregon? Although he’s been gone since 1993, the memory of Cesar E. Chavez lives on strongly in the hearts of many Oregonians.
Arizona, California, Colorado, Michigan, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin have all seen fit to honor him on this day. I thought “Little Beirut” would surely sound a charge to get this done. After all; the rest of the country seems to think of us as liberal and ground breaking. Is this not really true of us?
Back in New York, where I grew up, I remember the grape and iceberg lettuce boycotts of the 70’s led by Cesar. I was just a kid but recall thinking it was (and still is) important that people came together in unity to make a difference in the lives of others.. People all over the country hitched their wagons to his efforts, and inspired similar actions in Ohio, Texas, and Wisconsin. He was truly a great man.
So on this day I want to state that I believe Oregon needs to get off our collective duff to honor Cesar E. Chavez with a legal holiday!