Thursday, September 08, 2005

victoria para unidad

It was a humbling experience this evening to be included in a 'brown-black' unity rally at the south Toledo offices of FLOC, the Farm Labor Organizing Committee. For several months there has been unease and division between Toledo's African-American and Latino communities - at least among its leadership. I'm not in a position to explore the specifics, but a major wedge has been the Mayor's race. Forces working against Mayor Ford have targeted the Latino community for political gain. There are so many significant parallels with the latino and black communities - social and economic justice, the need to expand access to health care and child care, and their historic commitments to civil rights.

Mayor Ford has an excellent record of supporting latino candidates, organizations, causes, and families. His efforts with CareNet, for instance, have made priceless contributions to the latino's served. And he founded Adelante - a social service agency primarily benefiting the latino community.

A giant among men, Baldemar Velasquez, International President of the Farm Labor Organizing Committee, made an impassioned endorsement of Mayor Jack Ford this evening. Mayor Ford expressed unequivocal endorsement of the record number of latino and latina candidates running for office in Toledo this year: Bob Vasquez for City Council At-Large, Lisa Canales-Flores for Council District 6, Bob Torres for Toledo School Board and Lourdes Santiago for Judge. In fact, all the candidates in the room had support pledged to them.

Several African-American and Latino/Latina elected officials and activists participated, shared expressions of solidarity and support - and Baldemar asked everyone in the room to pull out all stops for the Mayor, and all the candidates. Justice, unity, truth, solidarity, loyalty - it was one of the best moments of the year.


Anonymous Phil Winters said...

Blah Blah Blah...

"Mayor Ford has an excellent record of supporting latino candidates, organizations, causes, and families. His efforts with CareNet, for instance,..." Blah Blah Blah

With all due respect, councilman, I have had enough of your blathering on about the dead in the water Mayor of Toledo.

Stopping CARTY can only be done by abandoning the good ship Ford and voting Wilkowki.

6:37 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

I respectfully disagree.

8:23 AM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

My only questions concern why Lisa Canales-Flores is not endorsed by the Lucas County Dems site and neither is Bob Torres or Lourdes Santiago.

It's nice that you mention them but they are not listed on the website as endorsed by the "side" of the Democratic Party that you are. Infact they have endorsed Steel for the Toledo School Board.

Both Torres and Santiago are endorsed by the "official" Lucas County Democratic Party site.

This sends a mixed message and frankly adds to the confusion over this whole A and B team thing. If you as a group truly believe in these candidates why were they not endorsed by both groups?

I have to admit even though I pay close attention at times the confusion wrought by this division makes it more difficult to really figure out who is exactly where and who supports who.



9:59 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

What is happening is momentum and political support is breaking towards Mayor Ford. The influence of latino leadership will be felt Tuesday - reflected in support for the latino candidates, Mayor Ford, and those of us who choose unity over Carty's selfish division. Our literature will refresh for the general.

11:11 AM  
Blogger ToledoJoe said...

How much Ford Kool-Aid have you drank in the last few months. I think it has blinded you from reality. If anybody has momentum, it is Wilkowski. The only way to stop Carty is to vote for Wilkowski. Anybody who is still deciding between Ford and Wilkowski had better understand that if they vote for Ford Carty is our next mayor. Only Wilkowski has any chance of stopping him.

2:20 PM  
Blogger HansT said...

Wilkowski is polling below the republican, where is the momentum in that?

4:27 PM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

Frank, I appreciate you are in a difficult position as far as this whole A/B team division thing.

But you have to realize that for the average person some of this appears not only confusing but almost hypocritical. You write here in support of candidates that don't necessarily support Ford being elected.

This division is not going to end after Tuesday, if anything it is going to increase if it is Ford versus Carty in the general.

It's sad because some of these candidates on both "teams" should be the ones supported by both and openly.

8:00 PM  
Blogger liberal_dem said...

It seems to me that it was the Ford folks who were driven out, or was that thrown out, of the Democratic Party. That party refused to endorse the sitting Council members, setting up the present A, B situation.

Is our collective memory that short?

8:37 PM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

I'm not going to pretend I kept score during the whole A and B team creation. Nor have quite a few of us that are not involved in the day to day politics of the Lucas County Democratic struggles.

Given I have people that ask me for clarification when at times I find it hard to keep score? I'd say in total honesty most people don't understand the division let alone who is who.

I'm one of those ones who believe in supporting who I feel is the best candidate no matter the political affiliation they have chosen. Which is why I don't always agree with who Frank supports as in the case of Mayor Ford, however I do believe Frank should be re-elected because I do believe he makes a valuable contribution to the City of Toledo.

While I can't vote for him? I also realize how important Toledo is to the burbs which is why I participate and pay close attention.

11:38 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

I've known blacks and latinos to have political beliefs across the political spectrum. Thats why it seems racist to rally people behind a leader because of their race. You might say, "well a latino leader has latino intersests at heart, so it makes sense for them to support that candidate."

My point is those interests within racial segments are not homogenous. It is better to pick candidates based on a personal match rather than race. Latinos and blacks who are not impovershed often feel ostrasized politically when they do not believe in all the values of the vocal leaders of their racial group.

I've met Baldemar, and he has done great work. He worked for black civil rights before he started working on latino ones. Caucasions have worked along side both movements. But why should there be a latino block of voters pushing a slate of latino candidates? Why should black voters be the base of Ford's campaign? I voted for Ford, not Kest, race was not an issue.

Lets get past racism and reverse racism by ignoring the race of candidates. Lets hire (vote for) trustworthy candidates who solve the issues, regardless of ancestral origin.

5:42 PM  

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