Ruben Salazar Memorialized on Stamp

Date Put forth on September 27, 2007 by chicanopwr
Category Posted in Uncategorized


Crossposted from Latino Político

Our brother will be receiving an honor for his martyrdom

The U.S. Postal Service next year will issue a commemorative stamp in honor of slain Los Angeles Times reporter and columnist Reuben Salazar, the Times reported. “He was a groundbreaker for Latinos in this country, but his work spoke to all Americans,” Postmaster Gen. John E. Potter told the Times in a story by staff writer Louis Sahagun. “By giving voice to those who didn’t have one, Ruben Salazar worked to improve life for everybody. His reporting of the Latino experience in this country set a standard that’s rarely met even today.” Salazar was killed in 1970 at age 42 while covering a riot in East Los Angeles. He was hit in the head by a tear gas projectile fired by a sheriff’s deputy.

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Ruben’s story is one that echoes many Xicanos/Mexicanos in the United States. Our very identity does not recognize borders – nuestra cultura lives within the wind. Although born in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, the Salazar family ended up in El Paso, where Ruben grew up and eventually worked his way through the U.S. educational system as well as serving in the military.

Wielding a journalism degree from the University of Texas – El Paso, Ruben Salazar covered stories that very few to none dare expose – the mistreatment of Xicanos in the justice system. From prisons to police brutality in the barrios, his intrepid journalism shined a spotlight on the corruption that faces our people through this present day.

Since his murder at a 1970 Chicano Moratorium March against the Vietnam War in El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora de los Angeles de Porciúncula, Ruben Salazar has had numerous tributes named in his honor, including scholarships, journalism awards, libraries, the park near where he was murdered, a bilingual center y un corrido por el Padre de Chicano Music, Lalo Guerrero.

29 de agosto
Cuando vino la policía
violencia se desató;
el coraje de mi raza
luego se desenlazó
por los años de injusticia
el odio se derramó;
y como huracán furioso
su barrio lo destrozó.
En un edificio cercano
desgracia vino a caer
un gran hombre y buen humano:
periodista mexicano
de fama interancional;
fino padre de familia
voz de la comunidad.

When the police arrived
violence was unleashed;
the wrath of my people
uncoiled from within;
against years of injustice
hate spilled out;
and like a ferocious hurricane
its barrio it destroyed.
In a nearby building
misfortune came to fall
a great man and human being
él fue Rubén Salazar,
he was Rubén Salazar,
Mexican newspaperman
of international fame;
a fine father and husband
spokesman for the community.

Many thanks to Olga Briseño of the University of Arizona’s College of Humanities, as well as Latino/Xicano advocates across the U.S. for uniting to make this honor a reality.

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7 Comments

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  1. Gravatar Icon adriana Sep 27th, 2007 at 1:05 pm

    It’s about time!

    Did you know that they issued a stamp for the Mendez desegregation case? I have been meaning to blog about it.

    http://www.usps.com/communications/newsroom/2007/sr07_038.htm

  2. Gravatar Icon Man Eegee Sep 27th, 2007 at 1:31 pm

    Thanks for the linkage, adriana. I had heard about it but slipped off my radar. Appreciate the reminder. paz

  3. Gravatar Icon a4L Sep 27th, 2007 at 10:09 pm

    Good news to see positive images of Latinos. Because I’m too cheap to buy a postal meter, i know what stamps i’ll be using for a long time.

  4. Gravatar Icon olga Oct 4th, 2007 at 7:51 am

    I am so glad to this posting. The stamp is an important accomplishment to all of us and we are planning to submit more Latino names. I am at the University of Arizona and am putting together the archive on Salazar. If you have any stories or items that we can add to the archive let us know. The office number is 520-626-3731.

  5. Gravatar Icon Man Eegee Oct 4th, 2007 at 2:19 pm

    Saludos, olga. I’m also in Tucson (this is Man Eegee), perhaps we can help you with future endeavors to build greater awareness of the accomplishments of Latino figures who deserve more recognition. paz

  6. Gravatar Icon Daniel Maldonado Mar 3rd, 2008 at 2:27 pm

    It’s sad and unfortunate how it says here “speak your mind,” yet you line out La Voz.

  7. Gravatar Icon XicanoPwr Mar 3rd, 2008 at 9:34 pm

    I did not write this post, bro. However, I don’t think that was done on purpose. I think Manny meant to provide a link instead of a strike.

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