Posts Tagged ‘activist’

Remembering Amazing Women on International Women’s Day

March 8, 2015

victorjara42's Blog

For international women’s day, I want to remember 15 women who have inspired me one way or another through their activism, music, poetry, painting or spirituality. All of these women and countless more give me the source of inspiration and desire to continue planting seeds of hope and compassion in this chaotic world of ours.
In no particular order, here they are:

Comandanta Ramona

Suheir Hammad

Violeta Parra

Miriam Makeba

Mercedes Sosa

Wangari Maathai

Mother Teresa

Dorothy Day

Frida Kahlo

Anita Tijoux

Joan Baez

Las Jilguerillas

Julieta Venegas

Tracy Chapman

Sweet Honey in the Rock
(Song in honor of Ella Baker)

Aqui les dejo esta cancion de Dos Vientos De Voz Y Fuego que se llama Porque Esto Ya Comenzo. Esta cancion esta en el CD, EZLN: El Fuego y la Palabra en el disco de la Dignidad. Disfruten de esta rola.

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Homeless Bill of Rights Day of Action This Weekend In Downtown Los Angeles

January 17, 2015



Tomorrow come and join organizations from across Los Angeles as we gather for a day of action with music, art, dance and unity for all those whose mere existence is now considered a crime.

In the spirit of the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., we will reclaim public space in Downtown LA and uplift the rights of ALL people to sit, rest, and share food. Here is the info to tomorrow’s day of action:

1pm—Lunch/Parade begins at Gladys Park (6th and Gladys in Skid Row)
3pm to 6pm—Pershing Square Speak Out and Outreach
7pm thru Monday Morning—Sleep out outside the Central City Association (626 Wilshire Blvd)

Below are videos from our Parade last year in Venice Beach.

Paul Boden Discusses Homelessness in America

November 30, 2014

My dear friend, Paul Boden, a longtime homeless advocate and a leader in the homeless rights movement was a guest on the Tavis Smiley show to discuss homelessness in America. Tavis did a great job at letting its viewers know about Paul’s new book. If you want a copy of the book please go to
Here is Paul’s piece at the Tavis Smiley show.

Please feel free to share this video to whomever you think will benefit from it.

Happy 80th Birthday, Roberto Clemente!

August 18, 2014


Happy 80th Birthday to Roberto Clemente! As a baseball and Dodgers fan, Roberto Clemente is one of my all time heroes. This is what I wrote about Clemente last year, so will include it below in addition to couple videos on the pride of Puerto Rico. Enjoy!

Roberto was born in Carolina, Puerto Rico. At an early age, Roberto started playing baseball. In 1954, the Brooklyn Dodgers offered him a contract to play for their Triple-A team, the Montreal Royals. While with the Royals, Roberto didn’t play that much. He was often bench. Some say that the Dodgers were trying to guard him from the Rookie Draft of 1954. But, Clyde Sukeforth, a baseball scout for the Pittsburgh Pirates observed that Clemente was being bench and encouraged the Pirates to draft him. On November 22, 1954, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected Roberto Clemente in the Rookie Draft.

Roberto Clemente made his major league debut on April 17, 1955 against the Brooklyn Dodgers. He didn’t do well in his rookie season due to being involved in a car accident midway thru the season. Roberto Clemente really exploded with the Pirates in the 1960s. He led the Pirates to a World Series victory over the Yankees in 1960. Clemente led the National League in Batting in 1961, 1964, 1965 and 1967. He was the Most Valuable Player in 1966. He received numerous Gold Glove awards throughout the 60s for his outstanding defense. Clemente had a canon of an arm. He could throw a guy out at third base or home plate from right field. Players knew not to run on Clemente. He was one of the most amazing players to watch. He helped the Pirates win a second World Series in 1971 when the Pirates beat the heavily favored Baltimore Orioles in seven games. He was named World Series MVP after hitting .414 and hitting a solo home run in the Pirates 2-1 victory in game 7 of the World Series.

Roberto Clemente struggled with injuries and in 1972 he only played in 102 games but ended batting .312 in the season. Roberto collected his 3,000 hit, a double of the Mets’ Jon Matlack in front of the Pittsburgh Pirates fans at Three Rivers Stadium. That would end up being his last hit in the major leagues.

Roberto Clemente was not an ordinary baseball player. He used the diamond to expressed one of his many gifts. Clemente was a great soul. He cared for the most marginalized. He demonstrated tremendous compassion to the poor. Following the 1972 season, there was a catastrophic earthquake in Managua, Nicaragua. Upon realizing that some of the aid that he had previously sent to Nicaragua was not reaching those affected by the earthquake but intercepted by the Somoza government, Roberto Clemente boarded a small airplane that was taking aid packages to the victims. The plane left from Puerto Rico on December 31, 1972 but mechanical problems forced the plane to crash into the ocean off the coast of Isla Verde, Puerto Rico. Everyone from the Pirates attended Clemente’s memorial except his close friend and teammate, catcher, Manny Sanguillen, who decided to jump into the ocean in hopes of finding Roberto’s body. Roberto Clemente’s body was never found.

Roberto Clemente was inducted into Baseball’s Hall of Fame posthumously in 1973, becoming the first Latino to be elected into the Hall of Fame. Roberto was an amazing man. It takes a special man to go out of his way and coordinate emergency relief for victims of an earthquake in another country. Not only did Clemente orgazined relief funds but he put his family aside to personally go to Nicaragua and deliver the aid to the victims.

Major League Baseball (MLB) owes a lot to Roberto Clemente. I know that they have an award name after him for players who best follow Clemente’s humanitarian work but the award is not enough. It is time that Bud Selig, the commissioner of Baseball pays tribute to Clemente just the same way he did to Jackie Robinson. It is time for Clemente’s number 21 to be retired by all major league teams. Having his number 21 retired will send a powerful message that MLB truly honors and respects Clemente’s humanitarian work.

As a Jackie Robinson and Roberto Clemente fan, I think its only fair that 21 and 42 be the only numbers to be retired by all teams. Having 21 retired paves the way for MLB to have Roberto Clemente Days’ to be celebrated on August 18th as days where MLB will partner up with local community organizations and sponsor an organization that is doing amazing work on issues impacting that baseball’s town. In Los Angeles, it could be a grassroots organization working to end homelessness. In San Francisco, it could be an organization that advocates for equality when it comes to same sex marriages. In New York, it could be an organization that advocates for equal distribution of wealth and holds Wall Street thugs accountable to pay their share of taxes. In Pittsburgh, it could be an organization that brings awareness to the health conditions of the miners in Pennsylvania. If Major League Baseball had Roberto Clemente Days’ on August 18th, we will once again be demonstrating that Sports serves as a vehicle to address social issues that are not only impacting communities but putting the spotlight on community organizations who are making a difference in the lives of many Americans.

May we continue to keep Clemente’s legacy and spirit alive by living our lives for the greater good of others. Jackie Robinson once said, “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” Roberto Clemente lived by that quote. More importantly, he lived by his own quote, “If you have a chance to accomplish something that will make things better for people coming behind you, and you don’t do that, you are wasting your time on this Earth,”

Join LA Futbolistas For A Gender Non-Conforming, Trans, Womyn Futbol Game

April 22, 2014


For those in the Los Angeles area come and join us on May 4 as we will be playing a Gender Non-Conforming, Trans, Womyn Futbol game. If you have never played the game, Futbolistas allows  you the space to dribble the ball at your own pace and for you to pass the ball. We want people to fall in love with the sport and therefore their is no slide tackling and we emphasize more on passing the ball. The score is always 2-2 🙂

People from all ages are invited to come. We have parents that bring their children and play with us. Imagine a field where you are playing on the same team as your son or daughter or playing against them. Futbolistas allows that space to make it happen.

If you are around the area or would be interested in participating, we would love to see you present. So mark your calendars and hope to see some of you there!

Here is our mission statement:

As a lived community of diverse womyn,
transgender and gender nonconforming
activists and allies, we step alongside,
arms linked, onto the field to play.
We play for the game this day
to congregate and remember,
to witness and celebrate
those movements and voices of
strength, fury, intelligence.
This gathering brings together
old friends and young stars,
those liberated by visions 
of gender equality and social justice.
Together, let us shift.
Let us build leadership,
courage, reflexivity,
determination, capacity.
Let our feet dance together on
the field of green pastures.
Let our feet grace the land
beneath the arched sky,
playing with love the beautiful game-
futbol in the sun.

Long Live Steve Biko!

September 12, 2013

Long Live Steve Biko!

When I studied abroad in Cape Town, South Africa, I learned more about Steve Biko and I fell in love with his Black Consciousness Movement. This man was not an Anti-Apartheid Leader but a Visionary. For those who want to know more about the life of Steve Biko, I would encourage people to read his Autobiography, I Write What I Like.

My Steve Biko Soccer Jersey

September 12, 2013

South African Jersey

Steve Biko Jersey

Happy Birthday Yuri Kochiyama!

May 19, 2013

Today is Yuri Kochiyama’s 92nd birthday! I am going to celebrate her birthday by listening to this song that pays tribute to this great human rights activist and revolutionary.