Speech at Tucson High draws silent protest
Arizona Daily Star
May 12, 2006

Tucson, Arizona | Published:  http://www.azstarnet.com/sn/hourlyupdate/128878.php

 The deputy superintendent of the state Department of Education spoke to a nearly full auditorium of students and administrators at Tucson Magnet High School this afternoon, partly as a countermeasure to the contentious speech labor activist Dolores Huerta gave last month in which she stated that "Republicans hate Latinos."

But halfway through the 15-minute speech Margaret Garcia Dugan, about 50 students, many of whom were part of Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán, or the Chicano Student Movement of Aztlán, stood in silent protest of what they believed was a Republican attempt to silence Hispanics. They also believed they should have had an opportunity to ask Huerta questions after her April 3 speech and during today's press conference involving Dugan and state Superintendent Tom Horne.

Dugan finished her speech uninterrupted. In it, she said Huerta had the right to make the comments she did, but urged those in attendance to "be guarded of what people say or tell you."

After the speech, few students applauded. Those who had stood and close to 100 others walked out of the auditorium, just before Principal Abel Morado told those remaining that he didn't tell the students to sit because "it did not cause a substantial disruption to what our speaker was talking about."

Morado also said that he respected the students who stood in protest, but was disappointed that he was not told about it before it happened. He mentioned that no one stood in protest when Huerta spoke, or walked out immediately afterward.

"I expected the same today," he said.

Read more in Saturday's Arizona Daily Star.