The Real Cinco de Mayo
Dear LULAC Friend,
It was dawn on May 5, 1862 when 6,000 elite, well-dressed French soldiers arrived at Puebla. They were highly-experienced and had not lost a battle in 50-years. They were also well armed with pistols, carbines, bayonets, and cannons from Europe.
On the Mexican side stood a few hundred men who were underfed, ill-equipped, mostly “ragtag” farmers led by a 33-year old self-schooled soldier, a Tejano General named Ignacio Zaragoza. They expected to die or surrender against such a powerful foe.
Three times the waves of thousands of French troops came and three times the outnumbered Mexicans beat them back. The mighty French lost more than 500 men in a single day while less than 100 Mexicans lost their lives.
Today, LULAC faces similar battles against those who think they are far greater and more powerful. These opponents have long experience waging war against “ragtag volunteers“ they vow to conquer through voter suppression, denials of civil rights to veterans, cuts in education and access to college, imprisoning refugee families and children, even being willing to use pesticides on farm workers and along the border to deter refugees from reaching safety.
LULAC will not surrender or retreat. We may not have their powerful political cannons in Washington or their millions of dollars for well-paid campaigns of bigotry. Yet, like our ancestors of Puebla, we are fiercely determined, courageously resilient and descendants of a people who never give up.
The real Cinco de Mayo isn’t about margaritas, fajitas and fiestas. It is about remembering how by organizing, mobilizing and working together, we are a mighty force for good capable of overcoming seemingly insurmountable foes of injustice.
On this 90th LULAC Anniversary, let us each be a courageous defender of social justice and an outspoken leader for the civil and human rights even when risking our own personal freedoms if necessary. That’s why we will grow LULAC membership and donate to keep La Luz Del Pueblo para 90 años más!
On this Cinco de Mayo…
¡Que Vivan Los Héroes de Puebla y Que Viva LULAC!
LULAC National President
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit www.LULAC.org