This is covert white supremacy in the guise of educational standard-keeping--nothing more, nothing less. Given the sharp increase of anti-Latino rhetoric, policies, and crimes in Arizona and the rest of the country, one should not be surprised by this madness and yet one is. The removal of those books before those students' very eyes makes it brutally clear how vulnerable communities of color and our children are to this latest eruption of cruel, divisive, irrational, fearful, and yes racist politics. Truly infuriating. And more reason to continue to fight for a just society.
“This is a mini-McCarthyish blacklist equating any Latin@ immigrant-related expression to the fear generated amongst the populace during the Cold War. This is not the only move to discredit Latin@ literature along the border, in particular Texas. The question during an election year to ask, especially for Arizonan voters, is: Yay or nay on our First Amendment and Freedom of Speech rights being systematically removed?
--Ana Castillo is the author of “Loverboys” and “So Far From God,” along with many other novels and books of poetry.