Remembering Martin Luther King Jr. and His Support of the Latino Community

More than 50 years after Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, his words continue to resonate with communities of color. As a leader in the civil rights movement, we often discuss the integral role he played in advancing the causes of African Americans. But what we don’t often discuss is how he also inspired and mobilized Latinos across the United States.

As Raul Yzaguirre, the former president of the National Council of La Raza, told the Associated Press, MLK’s speech pushed him to advocate for more than just Latinos. “Although the focus was on the African-American community at the time, I think his thoughts, his sense of justice resonated with those of us who had perhaps a broader sense of inclusion, who wanted Latinos and Native Americans and other minorities to be an integral part of a civil rights movement,” he said.

And two years after the March on Washington – which showed many the effects of organizing on a large scale – the 1965 voting rights marches in Selma further showed them the power of grass-roots organizing. And reflecting on King’s legacy 10 years after his death, Chavez wrote in Maryknoll Magazine that the civil rights leader led the way through his nonviolence, which inspired the United Farm Workers’ philosophy.

“It has been our experience that few men or women ever have the opportunity to know the true satisfaction that comes with giving one’s life totally in the nonviolent struggle for justice,” he wrote. “Martin Luther King, Jr., was one of these unique servants and from him we learned many of the lessons that have guided us. For these lessons and for his sacrifice for the poor and oppressed, Dr. King’s memory will be cherished in the hearts of the farm workers forever.”

Continue onto Remezcla to read about how Martin Luther King Jr. advocated for the Latino community.

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Jillian Mercado: Latina Model Seeks To Bring Inclusivity to Fashion

By Rosario B. Diaz

The modeling and fashion industry has been notorious for showing consumers a distorted image of what it means to be “beautiful.” With unrealistic beauty standards that display stick-thin (and often photoshopped) images of women, the business has convinced an entire generation of young minds that the fashion industry is exclusive only to those who fit these standards. Fortunately, recent years have shown a backlash against these images, and there’s now a movement to dispel the myth that only one type of body can be displayed. Jillian Mercado is a part of that movement, and it all started when the young Latina, who also happened to have been born with muscular dystrophy, decided she wanted to not only work in the fashion industry, but to be up front and center. Continue reading Jillian Mercado: Latina Model Seeks To Bring Inclusivity to Fashion

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‘Latinas in Motion’ Founder Encourages Healthy Habits Through Running

On a June afternoon in late 2012, Elaine Gonzalez Johnson, frustrated by running alone, sent a text to every woman in her phone and launched a nationwide movement.

‘I’m going to run two-and-a-half miles on Saturday at 7 AM,’ it read. ‘Will you join me?’

A month earlier, Johnson — now a 30-year-old full-time program manager in the Philadelphia school district — had stood at the starting line of her first-ever race, Philadelphia’s Broad Street Run, which touts itself as the largest 10-mile race in the country. Despite being in a crowd of over 35,000 fellow runners, she felt alone. “I didn’t see anybody who looked like me,” Johnson said. “There was such a lack of Latinas at this particular race.”

Johnson’s initial impression was not far off from the truth: despite their status as the country’s largest racial or ethnic minority, at 17.6% of the nation’s total population, Hispanics make up only a small portion of runners nationwide. In 2016, only 6 percent of overall runners surveyed identified as Hispanic, according to RunningUSA, a not-for-profit organization launched in 1999 which tracks developments in the sport through annual surveys and reports. And for women runners, the figures are even bleaker: barely 5 percent of female runners surveyed by the organization in 2014 identified as Hispanic.


Within weeks after the Broad Street Run, Johnson decided to take matters into her own hands. In June, a few days after she texted all the women she knew, six women showed up to meet her for an early morning two-and-a-half mile run at Abraham Lincoln High School in northeast Philadelphia. The group began to grow every week. And by August of that year, a chapter had sprung up in New Jersey. Latinas in Motion was born.

Almost five years later, the group boasts 4,000 members in 17 chapters across 14 states and in Puerto Rico, where Johnson’s family hails from. And Johnson has become the face of the movement, appearing on the cover of Women’s Running magazine last June.

Continue onto NBC News to read more about Latinas in Motion.

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5 Eye-Opening Moments From This Moving Doc About Four Chileans With Down Syndrome

The most important thing is that you guys are responsible for your own lives.” The line comes early in Maite Alberdi’s documentary Los niños (The Grown-Ups). It is directed at a group of students at a Chilean school for people with Down Syndrome. But Ana, Ricardo, Andrés, and Rita aren’t children. Now in their forties, they all still attend the school though now they work in the kitchen as part of the catering department. They spend their days baking treats and sweets. Continue reading 5 Eye-Opening Moments From This Moving Doc About Four Chileans With Down Syndrome

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