Mexican American In WW2

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There were many political, economic, and social changes for Mexican American people during the World War II era that lasted from 1939 to 1945. Without doubt this was a worldwide issue. However, World War II was an opportunity for many Mexican Americans to assimilate being into in American society. Since in past years they were not included in society they were just seen as workers. The participation of the Mexican Americans in World War II helped their community by allowing them to take jobs that had been previously denied to them, they became plumbers, welders, and riveters at aircraft plants, but despite of being of great help in the World War II, Mexican Americans were still discriminated against.

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We were given a tin cup a cold plate of spam, and two slices of white bread (Rivas-Rodriguez). Also the Bracero Program was created in 1942 because many farms or companies argued that war would bring labor shortages to low-paying agricultural jobs. World War II and the Bracero Program of 1942 reintroduce mass Mexican labor in agriculture in the U.S (Mr. Rios). Basically to help American farms and factories that were running during the war, this workers suffered racial, wage discrimination, and bad living conditions. In 1944 president Franklin Roosevelt created the G.I Bill this act provide to the returning veterans with mortgage loans, free educational opportunities and job placement so they can be able to better their economic status.

Many types of propaganda with phrases like this one, “Americans all let’s fight for victory” with Uncle Sam and a Charro together. This propaganda was made for encourage and have the attention of Mexican Americans and other ethnic groups to join the military. Numerous Mexican Americans fought and served in this war, obtaining more Medal of Honor and other prestigious decorations than any other ethnic group, unfortunately not all of these war veteran´s duty were recognized by government and by the master narrative which means that school books don’t talk about this part of history because of classism and discrimination at the time, although there is not big change in this days. They think that by going to war they would be finally part of the American society. Latinos have viewed military service as a route meaningful inclusion within a society that in years past had a hard time viewing them as real (Oropeza). While the war was happening Mexican Americans who stayed at home called the “pachucos” or the Zoot-Suits start having discriminating problems with Anglos in 1943, because they hadn’t gone to war they saw them as lazy people, gang members, and trouble makers. I hear tell you pachucos wear these monkey suits as a kind of armor, this is what you zooters need a little old fashioned discipline (Valdez). This start the Zoot-Suit Riots in Los Angeles. Anglo members of the armed forces, Rangers, and Cowboys were soon joined by civilians in a spree of attacking and beating Mexican Americans wherever they were found.

In 1945 a Mexican elite air squadron, known as the Aztec Eagles were sent to some mission alongside the U.S air force during the liberation of the Philippines. Mexican Americans felt their efforts and sacrifices for the country during the war had earn them equal rights, but just like other minorities faced discrimination when they returned from war, this make future leaders of the Latino and Chicano Rights Movement began their efforts after having served in uniform. Sal Castro, a Mexican American teacher who encouraged the students to make their grievances public after school administrators and school board members failed to listen to them (Garcia/Castro).

Mexican American after the World War II though that better things for their community and culture would come for them, but an act of hypocrisy from the United States hit them. Operation Wetback of 1954 by Eisenhower deports more than a million Mexican Americans (Mr. Rios). Many of this Mexican American had papers to be legally in the U.S, most of them leave the country even though they have a house and many years in the U.S, they because of their family. The United States is telling Mexicans and Mexico that they are only used when they are occupied for jobs or other things that are done for the convenience of the United States.

07 September 2020

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