Many say that these are the bad men, the cause of all evil in the world. In fact, they have been under attack both overtly and surreptitiously by so called “progressives liberals” for some time now.” and ” For one thing they are dead white men and some of them owned slaves, therefore making them hopelessly out of date and venal. While it is true they were all men “Founding Fathers” after all. But then I may point out patriarchal systems were the rule across the world in the late 18th Century. And the norm was for the majority to rule.There was very little minority representation; in fact most states were tyrnannies were the common people had few, if any rights at all. If they were not actual slaves, they were very close to it.
Perhaps I am backwards and politically incorrect but I am still extremely grateful for these “Founding Fathers” and the Constituition that they gave us and the world. The truth of it is the people that attack the writers of one of the most, if the not the most important secular documents are not really after the authors at all but are attacking the document, the Constitution. It is the highest law of the land. Perhaps the major thrust of the document is its intention to limit the power of present and future ambitious men, lustful for power to undermine and subvert the rights, property, lives and freedoms of the people of the United States, And this is what those that attack the framers of the Constituition are really after.
Freedom for themselves to do whatever they please, without restriction whatsoever
Here is a link to the video that started this discussion thread, followed by an open letter to Ted Cruz by Jose Antonio Lopez originally published in the Rio Grande Guardian, followed by two more responses.
Author and Guardian columnist José Antonio López has penned an open letter to Ted Cruz, the Republican Party nominee for U.S. Senate.
In the letter, López says he is concerned about a statement Cruz made following his primary runoff victory over Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst about “reclaiming our country.”
López says that because Cruz is Cuban-American he probably does not have much affinity with Mexican-American history. He therefore invites Cruz to visit South Texas. During the primary season Cruz made only one visit to the Rio Grande Valley and it was not well-publicized.
Here, in full, is López’s open letter to Cruz.
August 1, 2012
Dear Mr. Ted Cruz,
Congratulations on winning the Republican Party nomination to replace retiring Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.
The reason I write to you is that I am concerned about a quote attributed to you after your victory against Lt. Governor Dewhurst: “Millions of Texans, millions of Americans are rising up to reclaim our country, to defend liberty and to restore the Constitution.”
Sir, let me remind you and your Tea Party supporters that the Constitution you refer to, in its original state and intent, leaves out millions of Texans and U.S. citizens. The reason is that when freedom documents, such as the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the famous Bill of Rights were signed by the U.S. founding fathers in 1776, they did not apply to minority groups. In short, they were written by founding fathers who were White, Anglo Saxon Protestant men and they wrote them for White, Anglo Saxon Protestant men.
Sir, it may surprise you, but “states rights” has been the tool of choice of racists in our country’s history. It was that horrible system of Jim Crow apartheid that minorities (and supportive Democratic Party leaders) bravely confronted and defeated to win Amendments, Acts, and Statutes. Those precious victories ensured that minorities received human rights and privileges automatically guaranteed for whites.
Specifically, in 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court (Class Apart Decision) directed the State of Texas to end their official discrimination against its citizens of Mexican-descent who occupied the status as second-class citizens, an injustice that had existed since 1848. FYI, the discrimination continues. For an eye- opening experience, sir, may I suggest you visit South Texas whose residents are mostly of Mexican-descent, many who are descendants of the original Spanish Mexican pioneers who settled the area in the 1700s. As you do so, please note the stark, state-sanctioned economic disparity between the regions North and South of U.S. Highway 59 (Rio Grande Valley). Since you are a Cuban-descent Hispanic, I doubt that you are familiar with or are sympathetic with the long history of and issues that affect Mexican-descent citizens, by far the largest group of Hispanics in the U.S.
The 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act were approved due to Black community pressure and the key support of liberty-minded white leaders who could no longer be part of existing bigotry. For minorities, these “corrections” to the trajectory of the U.S. Constitution paved a level playing field framework that their children now utilize to achieve the well-known American dream.
Sir, in your quest to “take back” the country and “restore” the Constitution, please understand that the 1954 Class Apart Decision, the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and the 1965 Voting Rights are sacred to Black and Mexican-descent U.S. citizens. Leave them alone! In other words, Don’t Tread on Us!
Yours truly, José Antonio López, 8th Generation Texan Universal City, Texas
Response to Response by Editor Writers Of The Rio Grande
Jose Antonio Lopez a columnist for the Rio Grande Guardian and a Tejano Historian directed an open letter to Ted Cruz concerning remarks he made after winning the Texas Republican Primary for US Senator. The gist of the remarks is that Ted Cruz wants to “reclaim our country. Millions of Texans, millions of Americans, are rising up to reclaim our country to defend liberty and to restore the Constitution,” Cruz said, a sentiment that millions of Americans are in tune with. While we at Writers Of The Rio Grande are no particular fans of either party, and have enormous differences with Ted Cruz and mainstream Republicans, there were some very disturbing declarations in Jose Antonio Lopez’s open letter response.
First off there is the ethnic issue. Ted Cruz is half Cuban-American. So he can’t understand Mexican-Americans, according to Mr. Lopez. In other words his land was never stolen by North Americans and he never suffered discrimination or treatment as a second-class citizen. I don’t know the particulars here and am not that interested in them. I know that Castro stole every thing he could get his hands on in Cuba. No doubt about that. I do know that whatever crimes the United States has inflicted on it’s own citizens or on peoples under it’s control (and there have been legion) they pale to the sheer enormity of the crimes of the rest of the world. There was slavery when the United States was founded, but there was also slavery in Mexico and throughout Latin America under an extremely harsh and tyrannical colonial system. In addition in Latin Americas well as in most of the western world at that time, religious tolerance was unknown. There was racial and ethnic discrimination after the end of slavery in the United States. In other countries there were actual pogroms and massacres and diaspora.
The history of the world is written blood red and pit-black. We can’t go back to correct one thing. The founding fathers and progenitors of this country were not saints, but they rose to meet destiny and were for hundreds of years, and still are today, venerated for establishing a Republican form of government that has been the worlds most enduring.(Except maybe for Switzerland, on which much of the American system is modeled) I see a concerted effort to minimize the Constitution and the founding fathers. I don’t like it. The new system that is set to replace it is part and parcel of the old system that ruled much of the world during the twentieth century, and murdered, enslaved, and impoverished so many
Let me end my response to Mr. Lopez’s response to Mr. Cruz by saying:
Mexican-Americans, Cuban-Americans, Polish, Italian, English or Irish Americans, in essence, all of us, are in the same boat.
There was a day when more Mexican immigrants came to theUnited States, legally or otherwise than left. Now just as many are leaving as coming.
This says a lot. Not a good sign.
More than half of Americans are getting some kind of government check. An American President and military industrial complex wage war at will with no congressional approval or oversight. Checkpoints are spread across the land. Poorly screened and criminal government agents grope citizens and foreign guests to this country and are caught stealing from them as well. There is no check or limit on executive or legislative power. The 4th amendment is under attack as well as the second; and yes, the first also.
Yes, we all need to rise up and take our country back. I don’t see this as an ethnic issue. I see this response to Mr. Cruz as an attempt to disguise and obscure an issue under the fog of ethnicity.
Caveat: I am not responding for Ted Cruz. He can do his own response.
Response to Response to Response by Don Clifford
Local Rio Grande Valley Literary luminary
Mr. Lopez is historically correct about our 13 colony Founding Fathers. They were a bunch of WASPs and wrote the Declaration, Constitution and Bill of Rights for fellow WASPs. Somewhere along the way, the other 37 states accepted the documents for their WASP constituency while minorities like the Irishmen, Germans, Catholics, Mormons, Mexicans, Blacks and others wouldn’t come full measure until the mid-60’s Civil Rights movements.
When I first came to the Valley in 1953, I was appalled at the obvious discrimination against Mexican-Americans – separate restrooms, drinking fountains, seats in a movie theater, etc. I understood the situation with the Blacks but I grew up not knowing about the Mexican-American struggle for equality and considered this ethnic group just another class of White folks. I even married a Mexican-American and soon had a delightful time learning about this sliver of culture called the Rio Grande Valley – a vibrant culture that encompasses the whole United States. You can find a Mexican food restaurant just about anywhere, now.
I don’t know the context of Ted Cruz’s comment about “reclaiming our country”. I sure hope he didn’t mean to “….tread on us” as Mr. Lopez implies.
Don Clifford Aug 8 2012