Fight Back! News

News and Views from the People's Struggle

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By staff

LA students stand with Palestine.  | Staff/Fight Back! News

Los Angeles, CA – On the afternoon of Wednesday, June 12, in an act of escalation for Gaza, pro-Palestinian student protesters occupied the student services building at the California State University – Los Angeles (CSULA) campus.

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By Jared Hamil

Flight attendants on the picket line at LAX.  | Staff/Fight Back! News

Los Angeles, CA – On the late morning of June 13, hundreds of flight attendants from different airlines picketed across terminals at LAX, the Los Angeles airport. Three unions were present and coordinated together Worldwide Day of Action, hitting multiple airports across the country.

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By Victor Rodriguez

Los Angeles event commemorates Chicano resistance during Zoot Suit Riots.  | Staff/Fight Back! News

Los Angeles, CA – On June 2, Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights was alive with vibrant culture and history as hundreds of Chicanos gathered for the Zoot Suit Cruise, an event commemorating the infamous Zoot Suit Riots of June 1943. Over 100 classic cars, affectionately known as “Bombas,” lined the streets, their glossy, bright paint jobs reflecting the pride and resilience of the Chicano community.

Chicanos, dressed in their finest zoot suits, danced the night away to the energetic rhythms of Pachuco Jose Y Los Diamantés, a band known for their Chicano rock. The atmosphere was electric with celebration, yet charged with a somber remembrance of the violent history that necessitates such gatherings.

The Zoot Suit Riots were a dark chapter in Los Angeles' history, marked by a week-long series of brutal attacks. On June 3,1943, mobs of U.S. servicemen, off-duty police officers and civilians targeted young Chicanos and other oppressed nationality youth. These violent assaults, which eyewitnesses described as mass lynchings, were sparked by racial tensions, targeting those wearing the distinctive zoot suit popular among many young Chicanos.

For a week, U.S. Navy sailors, police officers and other white men roamed the barrios, attacking indiscriminately based on clothing and skin color. Chicana women were beaten and some raped by servicemen, while Chicano men faced beatings and imprisonment. The violence, which spread from downtown Los Angeles to East Los Angeles and Watts, was only quelled when military personnel were confined to their barracks. By then, the attacks had wrongfully imprisoned many and left an indelible scar on the community.

Decades later, the City of Los Angeles issued a formal apology, acknowledging the horrific events and the city's role in them. However, the apology was seen by many as half-hearted. For Chato Ranflas, one of the cruise's organizers, events like the Zoot Suit Cruise are crucial for cultural remembrance and community strength. “It's very important to have these types of cultural Chicano events in the neighborhood. Aquí estamos y no nos vamos,” Ranflas declared, emphasizing the enduring presence and resilience of the Chicano community.

Centro CSO members were present at the event, enjoying the festivities and documenting the community's vibrant celebration of culture and history. The Zoot Suit Cruise stands as a testament to the strength and unity of the Chicano community, a poignant reminder of their enduring spirit.

#LosAngelesCA #OppressedNationalities #ChicanoLatino #Zoot #CentroCSO

By Hannah Keith

UCLA workers strike after crackdown on pro-Palestine activism.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Los Angeles CA – On Tuesday, May 28, hundreds of workers and students at the University of California Los Angeles walked off the job in response to the university’s brutal crackdown on pro-Palestine encampments earlier this month.

The striking workers are graduate students and academic researchers represented by the United Auto Workers union local 4811 (UAW) which represents 50,000 workers across the UC school system. The UAW declared the university’s response to the protest an unfair labor practice and will be on strike until at least June 30 or later if the strike is extended.

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By Marisol Márquez

Students at Mendez High School walk out of classes demanding rehiring of the school principal.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Los Angeles, CA – On the morning of May 28, over 100 Chicano students at Mendez High School walked out of their classes. Students were demanding that their school principal Mauro Bautista be brought back after mysteriously being removed for more than a month now from the school.

Starting at 9 a.m., the students walked out of their classes and marched along the front of the school, holding a banner that read, “Free Jefe!” After the march and coming back to school premises, the students refused to return to classes and staged a sit-in, where organizers read their demands and made speeches.

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By staff

Los Angeles event demands charges against the Uhuru 3 be dropped.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Los Angeles, CA – In a packed room of Black and Chicano activists, high school students, and other supporters, a May 23 forum was held in support of the Hands Off the Uhuru 3 movement. The Uhuru movement is led by the African People's Socialist Party, which is facing political attacks by the FBI.

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By Henry Cornejo

Chicanos rally in East Los Angeles in solidarity with Palestine.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Los Angeles, CA – On May 17, Chicanos from the Boyle Heights neighborhood in Los Angeles, California held a rally for the 76th anniversary of the Nakba. Chants like “Desde el río hasta el mar, Palestina va ganar!” rang through the Cesar E. Chavez and Soto intersection. The rally was organized by members of Centro CSO, a Chicano-led grassroots organization, fighting for oppressed people in Boyle Heights and East Los Angeles.

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By Victor Rodriguez and Julianna Castellon

Los Angeles, CA – On Tuesday, May 7, the campus of California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA) witnessed a powerful display of solidarity as hundreds of students, led by Students 4 Justice in Palestine, united with community members and alumni at their campus’ student encampment. Their collective voice demanded “Hands off Rafah” and for the CSU system to sever all financial ties with Israel.

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By Carlos Montes

UTLA and SEIU 99 rally in front of LAUSD Headquarters May 7.  | Photo: Sukhbir Gill

Los Angeles, CA – Thousands of spirited Los Angles Unified School District (LAUSD) workers rallied on May 7 to protest proposed cutbacks and layoffs by Superintendent Alberto Carvalho.

In front of LAUSD headquarters, the educator’s union, United Teachers of Los Angles (UTLA) and SEIU 99 school workers voiced a united strong message of “no cutbacks and no layoffs” that will hurt students.

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By Reuben Navarrete

Crowd gathers holding the Mexican flag and signs with slogans like "Legalization for all".

Los Angeles, CA – On May 1, over 100 people gathered at Mariachi Plaza in Boyle Heights to commemorate May Day, the International Workers Day. Across the world workers celebrate this day to highlight the contributions of the working class, regardless of their immigration status. It originated in Chicago, where in 1886, striking workers were attacked by police while fighting for the eight-hour workday, the right to unionize and safer working conditions. Eight of the organizers were convicted and four of them publicly executed by hanging.

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