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Happy Birthday to Six Years of Neglect and Why We Need to Become Organized

            The Save Our Barrios Coalition is hosting the event “Happy Birthday to Six Years of Neglect”. The Save Our Barrios Coalition is a comprised of Save Our Barrios, Brown Berets de Aztlan, Collectivo Zapatista, International Peoples Democratic Uhuru Movement, Centro Cultural de la Raza, MEChA de SDSU, and the Chicano Park Steering Committee. As a coalition we are hosting this event to raise awareness to this building and the fact that is has been neglected and abandoned for some years now, much the same as many other parts of our neighborhood by the city. We will be having this event just outside the chain link fences surrounding the building, this Saturday the 31st of Aug., 2013. We feel that by bringing the community out we can initiate dialogue in the importance of organizing the neighborhood.

The Save Our Barrios Coalition (SOBC) has focused this effort on this building for a few reasons. Its central location to the neighborhood, and the surrounding areas, its size which will be beneficial in becoming a greater resource to the area, and because historically this was a building that was used to bring services to the neighborhood, but for a few years now has been shuttered and boarded up. We see the potential in a place that has been in its current unused state for far too long. The reason this building has slipped into the current state that it is in is because it was reliant on a system that has little regard for the poor and oppressed peoples of the community it was meant to serve. We see that under our directions as a coalition of completely grassroots based groups we can avoid similar pitfalls that have fallen on it thus far. None of the members of any group in this coalition is being paid to be here, we are all here on our own time and dime, and with that we feel that we are here for the right reasons to begin with. We do not have the objective to make money off of community, but instead we want to help organize the community to create the space that we would all like to see for ourselves with our own resources. A neighborhood that may not be rich in monetary resources individually is still a powerful force united.

We do understand that money is a real issue, and as a coalition we have begun to search for ways to lessen the impact of this problem. We also understand that we cannot expect to have this building rehabilitated immediately, especially after years of neglect. There will be a healing process for this space that will take time to work out, much the same as any entity that has gone through years of abuse, but as with any thing going through a process of rehabilitation it is an easier task accomplished with the help of many rather then a few individuals. If the community comes together united under this common cause of seeing this space opened up for the betterment of the community then we will all be able to take control of this space under our own self determination. Self determination is a key element to this process, as with anything regarding our future, if we let the city, state, non-profit agency decide what is best for us, then we will find ourselves in the same pitfalls that we have been in for too long. We as a community should be the ones to decide what we need, there is no reason outside forces should decide what is best for us. That is why this building is so important in starting that process, because if we are to control our own future as a community then we need to have places under our complete control, if we have no land, then we are subject to the will of the people that control the land.

For all people who are coming out this Saturday the 31st, the SOBC hopes you consider becoming involved in this process in one way or another. We invite you to join us and see if you agree with the direction and points of unity that we have created. We meet monthly to discuss the gentrification of the neighborhood and also to continue our organizational planning of the neighborhood around this issue. We put on a few events through the year to raise awareness to what is happening to the neighborhood and what we think can be done about it through organization. If you do not want to join our particular organization or want to create one in your own area we highly encourage that as well and we would like to work in solidarity with other groups who are doing similar work with similar goals in mind. The SOBC hopes to see you this Sat. and to continue seeing you work either with us or another group in the future as well.

In solidarity with all oppressed people,

-Save Our Barrios Coalition

 

 

 

SOBC Action flyer Eng

The Significance of Chicano Park and The Struggle To Stop Gentrification Today

April 16, 2013 Comments off

A few thoughts on the significance to the land take over to create Chicano Park and the continuing struggle against gentrification today.

Chicano Park was created on April 22nd, 1970 during a great period of struggle for people as well many oppressed people around the country and world. At this time the city wanted to create a highway patrol substation where the park is now located today. This was to go with the still fairly new freeway that had already divided our neighborhood in half and also as a way to bring the pigs into our neighborhood as another means of repression to our people. The people of Logan did not want this in the neighborhood and came together to stop the city from laying the foundations of another building to further disrupt our barrio, and instead laid the foundations for a park that symbolizes and fosters unity for our people on occupied land.

The Save Our Barrios Coalition sees the importance of this action against the state as incredibly significant to the struggle to regain this land for the people it belongs to, our people who have always been here. Chicano Park is a liberated piece of land from the state and now belongs to our people once again. Although it is a small park in a large neighborhood in an even larger city, its significance is colossal to our people in seeing that we can take back the land when we do come together. The struggle for land is one of the key elements to any mass revolutionary struggle, because without our own land and total control of it we are left powerless and without the ability to create our own way of living. Buying a house, or piece of land is a great accomplishment as our people have not always been allowed to buy land and property. As the last five years has shown with the housing crsis that it is not a guarantee that you’re home will not be taken away. We see that this is our land and that the only way to regain control of our community is through working together and becoming organized. As history has shown accomplishments such as Chicano Park only happen when people have united for a common goal.

Chicano Park is concrete example of organization and it’s power to get things done. The take over of the neighborhood may have stopped at the boundaries of the park, for the time being, but its significance goes well beyond this piece of land. The park is not only a cultural symbol as demonstrated by the murals and other art, but as more importantly a symbol of control of the land. That takeover for control can be replicated again through the organization of our people around the goal of regaining this land for ourselves and all the resources that go with it.

The Save Our Barrios Coalition understands that control of the land is of the up most importance. Without land we cannot truly battle so many other issues affecting our people. Although we see the importance fighting for so many causes for our people such as immigration, housing, police brutality, what people call racism, classism etc., these struggles can only be taken so far if we do not have an area of land for ourselves. What use is it fighting so many important causes without having solved the root issue first, land and it’s power and control over it. The complete ownership of our own land is the control of our own lives, such as when a person rents a house, although they are living there they are living under a landlords control who can evict and create disruption of your life at will and we feel this is the same as owning land now, we are buying it and we are using it, but ownership is not always permanent. Because of these reasons the Save Our Barrios Coalition feels that the fight against gentrification of our barrio by the city and other opportunist is also the struggle for a free and independent land for raza liberation.

Become involved, Chicano Park is the first important step towards raza self determination, and can be moved forward through an organized movement involving all gente.

The Save Our Barrios Coalition will have a booth this year at Chicano Park Day, April 20, 2013. Please feel welcomed to come and talk to us about this important cause and see what you can do about it. Come learn what we as a group are organizing for the upcoming year and beyond. There will also be flag raising and memorial for raza who were a part of the movement who have died in the past year and one of our founding members and guiding leaders will be remember at this time, Ernesto Bustillos. Ernesto Bustillos was a great leader and organizer for the movement who dedicated his life to creating a better existence for his family, the community, and oppressed people around the world.

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Categories: Uncategorized
A.R.E. - L.A.

Association of Raza Educators - Los Angeles

Uhuru Solidarity Movement

Official blog of the USM, the organization of Euro-Americans and other allies of African liberation working under the leadership of the African People's Socialist Party

InPDUM

International People's Democratic Uhuru Movement