Renaming Canon Lakes Drive to Cesar Chavez Drive

WHEREAS, Cesar E. Chavez was a civil rights, Latino, farm worker, and labor leader; a religious and spiritual figure; a community servant and social entrepreneur; a crusader for nonviolent social change; and an environmentalist and consumer advocate; and

WHEREAS, for more than three decades Cesar E. Chavez led the first successful farm workers union in American history achieving dignity, respect, fair wages, medical coverage, pension benefits, and humane living condition, as well as countless other rights and protections for hundreds of thousands of farm workers. Against previously insurmountable odds, he led successful strikes and boycotts that resulted in the first industry-wide labor contracts in the history of American agriculture. His union’s efforts brought about the passage of the found breaking 1975 California Agricultural Labor Relations Act to protect farm workers. Today, it remains the only law in the nation that protects the farm workers’ right to unionize; and

WHEREAS, the significance and impact of Cesar’s life transcends any one cause or struggle. He was a unique and humble leader, in addition to being a great humanitarian and communicator who influenced and inspired millions of Americans to seek social justice and civil rights for the poor and disenfranchised in our society. Cesar Chavez a common man with an uncommon vision for human kind stood for equality, justice and dignity for all Americans. His ecumenical principals remain relevant and inspiring today for all people; and

WHEREAS, a strong believer in the principles of nonviolence practiced by Mahatma Gandi and Dr. Marin Luther King, Jr. Cesar effectively employed peaceful tactics such as fasts, boycotts, strikes and pilgrimages, In 1968 he fasted for 25 to affirm his personal commitment and that of the farm labor movement to non-violence. He fasted again for 25 days in 1972, and in 1988, at the age of 61, he endured a 36-day “Fast for Life” to highlight the harmful impact of pesticides on farm workers and their children.

WHEREAS, Cesar Chavez’s motto in life: “si se puede” (it can be done), embodies the uncommon and invaluable legacy he left for the world’s benefit. Since his death, dozens of communities across the nation have renamed schools, parks, streets, libraries, other public facilities, awards and scholarships in his honor, as well as enacting holidays on his birthday, March 31. In 1994 he was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor in America.

WHEREAS, Cesar E. Chavez Drive would be the first Lubbock street to possess the name of any Latino, thus honoring Latino contributions.

WHEREAS, the street name change would bring further attention to the site of a past migrant labor camp in Aztlan Park, where many Hispanic families first evolved.

WHEREAS, Canyon Lakes Drive is on the course of the Fiesta Plaza, which was built for the intention of holding festivals and drawing public interest and tourism to North Lubbock. Further development of the lake areas is anticipated in the future. This tourism opportunity has the potential to spur economic development to North and East Lubbock, which have a growing need for jobs and improvement.

WHEREAS, Lubbock would be the first city to cross Marin Luther King, Jr. Blvd and Cesar E. Chavez Drive, thus encouraging two districts to work together to sustain the contributions of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Cesar E. Chavez; two heroes that worked to promote non-violence and humanity in the U.S.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the League of United Latin American Citizens supports the efforts of the Cesar E. Chavez Celebration Committee in its efforts to propose changing the name of Canyon Lakes Drive in Lubbock, Texas to Cesar E. Chavez Drive.

Adopted this 14th day of July 2007.

Rosa Rosales
LULAC National President

LULAC  l  2000 L Street, NW, Suite 610  l  Washington, DC 20036  l  (202) 833-6130  Fax: (202) 833-6135