César Chávez a biography by Roger Bruns
“The human beings who torture their bodies, sacrifice their youth and numb their spirits to produce this great agricultural wealth, a wealth so vast that it feeds all of America and much of the world. And yet the men, women and children who are the flesh and blood of this production often do not have enough to feed themselves.” –César Chávez
César Chávez became a great leader for the rights of Farm workers across America. His biography reaches the very core of his struggle and when it all began, starting with his youth and the education system. He wasn’t born a leader but from within his passion and determination, he became a voice for all to hear. He fought (nonviolently) during the same time Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was standing up for equality and civil rights. America was getting a wake up call from the people she was supposed to be protecting and respecting.
His motivation, he said, came from watching the struggles of his parents and from his own experiences with life in the fields and the instances in which the system was fixed so that an individual was made to feel more like a farm implement than a human. It came from watching family and friends treated as if they were “disposable chattel”, like cows and horses. With this motivation began a span of nonviolent protests, boycotts and marches which included hard times and deadly outcomes for many who wanted nothing more than a better life. During this long journey Chávez understood the road he had chosen with continued leadership through several fastings, speeches, marches, and death threats. An honest and caring man with a reasonable and compassionate cause, he didn’t have a fiery loud voice or a tall disposition, but his altruistic soft voice and on-fire attitude made people stop and listen.
He was and still is an important leader and example of human rights just like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Gandhi, and will forever be a forefather in our daily struggle for equality and respect as human beings. When the greediness of man comes to a halt, it is then that people will begin to see each other as human beings and not a means to become rich.