Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

May 7, 2012

US Dept of Justice addressing ethnic studies ban in Arizona

The Department of Justice reaches out to Mexican American Studies faculty at the University of Arizona, following the assault on Mexican American Studies in Tucson public schools, which resulted in the banning of books by award-winning Chicano and Native American authors in Tucson classrooms.

Update: Civil Rights investigation opened into Tucson Public Schools: Meeting Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 5 pm:

Photo Column of Americas
By Dr. Roberto Rodriquez
Posted at Censored News
Dear Community Allies,

Recently the Department of Justice reached out to several Mexican American Studies faculty members at the University of Arizona requesting a gathering of parents, students, and community members invested in the success of the MAS program in the Tucson Unified School District.
The politically motivated attacks on MAS in TUSD have been relentless, initiated by the state and carried out by district board members and administration.
Recently, Arizona superintendent of public instruction John Huppenthal suggested that ethnic studies programs at the university level should be eliminated. This unacceptable assault on academic freedom and critical thinking has serious implications for all ethnic and gender studies, and demonstrates a gross disregard for free expression and inquiry.
Department of Justice representatives would like the opportunity for dialogue with the community regarding this and other issues affecting educational equity in Arizona. We hope that this renewed attack will serve as a catalyst for representatives of all disciplines at the K-12 and university level to come together and condemn these attacks on academic freedom. We would like to propose organizing a community forum next Tuesday, May 8 that 5:30 pm to get together and share our concerns with the DOJ.
We have suggested the CPLC Youth Center on Ft. Lowell as a venue, and hope that we can have a sincere discussion about how these attacks have affected us all.
In Solidarity, The Mexican American Studies Community Advisory Board
-- Thanks and Sincerely

Roberto Dr. Cintli Rodriguez
PO BOX 3812 Tucson, AZ
85722 520-626-0824 COLUMN:

Also watch: Video interviews with students at Tucson Book Festival 2012:

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