I am a Labor Historian. I specialized in the Labor Movement for my Masters Degree at San Francisco State University. I had the opportunity to interview Melvin Belli several times while working on my thesis. He told me not to be intimidated by him. I was. He filled a room with his presence. I studied under Dr. Robert Cherney, who introduced me to Knights of Labor, and Wobblies, and Samuel Gompers. I met factory workers and butchers and school teachers, and wrote their stories into various class papers. Years later, I was honored to be a member of the AFT while adjunct teaching in a unionized college. My education in Labor History and Unionization is an integral part of who I am, and I will stand up for Unions and workers rights in Washington, DC.
I am running a Harry Truman campaign. I’m the underdog who will get out of my car, slog across a muddy field, and help you fix your tractor.
I chose to run for Congress, in part, to address our immigration policy, especially as it relates to DREAMers. Today, the President chose to surprise us a day early with his DACA decision. His is a cruel decision which will kick out many young people, some of whom know no other country but ours.
Over the years, some of the best students I’ve taught in my college History classes are DREAMers. Without them, the tapestry of our nation will be diminished. They contribute, not only as students, but as members of our Armed Forces, as Veterans, as employees, and as business owners. They are an integral part of our economy, and the cultural richness of our society.
So many of us are first, second, third generation, or descendants of immigrants. We were driven from our homelands by war, famine, or oppression. And, we were drawn to these shores for opportunity and hope. DREAMers are one thread in the beautiful tapestry of our great nation. They are OUR thread — a thread worth fighting for. My candidacy will continue to be devoted to that fight. And our DREAMers will be a priority for me in Washington, DC.
RIP Lucky Varela, who passed this week. My prayers and condolences to his family.