I went to see the movie, Cesar Chavez on his birthday, March 31st. I watched and felt a mix of sentiments about it. Being an individual who was partly inspired by Chavez and the United Farm Workers Union (U.F.W.) I felt a certain amount of kinship with the characters of the movie. As a former union president, of the International Molders & Allied Workers Union Local #164 in Northern California I felt a sense of solidarity. I met Chavez in Exeter, CA in 1979 while we discussed mutual support of each others unions. They walked with us in our picket lines and we walked with them and supported their boycott campaign.
The national boycott was inspiration to many people of my generation. We walked picket lines at Safeway and Lucky stores to discourage shoppers from buying grapes and lettuce. Many young Chicanas and Chicanos like myself thought of the United Farm Workers Union as an extension of the “Chicano Movement.” The Huelga (strike) made people conscious of the conflict between capitalists and workers in an agricultural setting.Download this piece as a PDF