Cesar Chavez Essay

1556 Words Sep 30th, 2008 7 Pages
One of the greatest civil rights activists of our time; one who believed the ways of Gandhi and Martin Luther King that “violence can only hurt us and our cause” (Cesar Chavez); a quiet, devoted, small catholic man who had nothing just like those he help fight for; “one of America's most influential labor leaders of the late twentieth century” (Griswold del Castillo); and one “who became the most important Mexican-American leader in the history of the United States” (Ender). Cesar Chavez; an American farm worker, who would soon become the labor leader that led to numerous improvements for union workers; it is recorded that Chavez was born near Yuma, Arizona on March 31, 1927 and died on April 23, 1993 in San Luis, Arizona. (Wikipedia) His …show more content…
Chavez joined his parents to help harvest carrots, cotton, and grapes under the blazing California sun. During this period Cesar Chavez experienced the corrupt labor contractors, extremely low wages, and poor living and working conditions that the migrant workers had to endure. Around this time as well, he got his first glimpse of union organizing when his father became active in several union activities. (Ramakrishnan; Russell) It is believed that Chavez’s father and uncle actively supported unions. Therefore he learned at a young age firsthand about strikes, organizing operations, and also picket lines. (Gale Encyclopedia)
During his lifetime, Cesar Chavez and his followers made many changes and contributions to society. While he was alive, he had the privilege to see what his non-violence actions produced; what they transpired. It is recorded that Chavez began actively organizing workers in the fields in 1952. The California-based Community Service Organization (CSO) recruited and trained for his work. Chavez built new chapters of CSO, led voter registration drives, and helped Mexican-Americans confront issues of police and immigration abuse during the next ten years. In 1958 he became general director of CSO. With $1,200 of his own savings, Chavez resigned four years later, to found the National Farm Workers Association (NFWA) in 1962. (Gale Encyclopedia) He was a very determined man; strived in everything he put his mind to. Russell declares that by
Open Document