Maria Peters

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Maria Peters

Pro-Choice/Green rally

November 5 1990 about 100 Stanford students attended a noon rally = in White Plaza that encouraged voting for environmental propositions and pro-choice candidates in today's elections. Congressional candidate Robert Palmer, who supports the propositions and abortion rights, was present to rally support for his bid for the 12th district seat. Palmer, who challenges incumbent Republican Tom Campbell, shook hands and spoke to students during the rally. Organized by the Pro-Choice Alliance, environmental groups and the Stanford Democrats, the event was meant to "get everybody psyched" the day before the election, said sophomore Flora Lu, head of Stanford's chapter of the Student Environmental Action Coalition, a national organization. She said students may place voting low on their priority lists because of midterms and other day-to-day worries, but that they must become aware of important issues and voice their concerns. Rally speakers encouraged students to vote for prochoice candidates and for California environmental Propositions 128, 130 and

Guest speaker Fred Miller, a community activist from Richmond, reminded students there is "not an academic solution" to the environmental problem. "The fight against pollution has many fronts... The electoral front has come to the fore," he said. In discussions after his speech, Miller said Propositions 135 and 138, which are sponsored by the agriculture and logging industries, are intended to "confuse voters." Miller also said he was pleased by young people's interest in protecting the environment and fighting "the people who are polluting." Speakers advocated Propositions 128 and 130, nicknamed "Big Green" and "Forests Forever," as well as Proposition 132. These would set limits on harmful pesticides, emissions, logging and fishing. Some speakers endorsed Palmer, gubernatorial candidate Dianne Feinstein and lieutenant general candidate Leo McCarthy, all of whom support the environmental propositions and abortion rights, according to Stanford Democrat Kevin Hartz, a junior. Council of Presidents member Ingrid Nava said students together can have a "big impact" if they show they are not apathetic. Maria Peters, co-chair of MEChA, a Chicano/Latino organiztion, said the Chicano/Latino community should "explode the myth" that minorities do not care about voting, especially because blacks and Latinos are the most affected by pesticides and other environmental hazards. Peters said farm workers walk into the fields every day, not knowing whether the land has been sprayed with pesticides or whether pregnant women will be infected with carcinogens. "I support 'Big Green' to save my people," she said. "We do care," said environmental coalition member Karen Plautt to enthusiastic applause of people who stopped to listen to the program and read literature. "I came because I want to vote and I want to find out what to vote for," said sophomore Ryan Fitzpatrick. Senior Leila Wice said she was was unconvinced by the rally and needs to do more reading. She observed that the rally focused less on details of specific issues and more on motivating people to be concerned. Students who are not registered to vote in California read the pamphlets and listened, too. "People across the country are looking to California" for the future of environmental initiatives, Lu explained. Although organizers were disappointed by the low turnout, junior Jen Pearson of the Pro-Choice Alliance took advantage of the crowd's enthusiasm by asking them for a "vocal commitment" to talk to three more people about voting before the polls close.

Rebecca King of the Stanford Pro-Choice Alliance passes out election pamphlets to Jamie Green and Dylan Mackay yesterday during a rally for environmental and abortion rights Issues on today's ballot.[1]

MEChA

In 1991 Maria Peters, Ana Mata, Ingrid Nava were the leaders of Stanford MEChA.[2]

Indignation at LRS attack

WE, AS STAFF PERSONS of color at The Stanford Daily, strongly condemn The Daily’s treatment of the May 18 article on the poster attacking Gordon Chang. We also condemn the sidebar article on the League of Revolutionary Struggle – which we feel was irresponsibly reported – and the nature of the subsequent coverage...

Moreover, the allegations are a direct attack on the self-determination of students of color, on the integrity of student of color groups and on the more than 20-year legacy of struggle, sacrifice and positive change that students of color have built on this campus.

The May 18 article offered no objective information about student of color groups, the United Farm Workers, Amiri Baraka or any other of the supposed League affiliates listed. As a matter of fact, in a journalistic style we have never seen before at The Daily, the article offered not a single named source for its allegations.

Furthermore, The Daily’s May 22 editorial was painfully hypocritical. On the one hand, the editorial criticized and condemned the “McCarthy-esque” poster. On the other hand, The Daily reprinted the flyer in full, advertising the slander to the community.

We feel The Daily’s article on the flyer actually supported the flyer by misrepresenting the Asian-American studies campaign, saying that “several student organizations worked last year to gain a tenure-track professorship for Chang .. although the campaign never called for the hiring of a particular individual. And The Daily legitimized the flyer’s racist and McCarthyistic accusations with the sidebar, twice as long as the actual flyer article, about “a highly secretive nationwide organization ... that focuses on people of color groups for its mass support,” and other allegations which we feel were inflammatory and under-lyingly racist. These Daily articles were themselves McCarthyistic...

We, as a group, have discussed possible paths of action, including mass resignation as a form of protest. Many of us no longer want to be associated with a paper like The Daily. However, we realize that it is important that we stay at The Daily and fight to make The Daily reflective of all people, regardless of race, gender or sexual orientation. We hope that one day students of color will be more than tokens at The Daily.

References

  1. [The Stanford Daily, Volume 198, Issue 32, 6 November 1990]
  2. [The Stanford Daily, Volume 198, Issue 51, 8 January 1991]
  3. [The Stanford Daily, Volume 197, Issue 64, 24 May 1990]