Modesto Brown Berets…Y Que?

The Modesto chapter of the Brown Berets was first established in 2006 under the motto “Culture, Community, Revolution”

CULTURE | Infusing Mexicano, Chicano and indigenous culture into the community.                                                      

COMMUNITY | Establishing programs and providing services for poor people and people of color.                               

REVOLUTION | Creating change in our communities through education and direct action.

The original group disbanded in mid-2007, but not before making their presence felt in the area:

MAY DAY 2007 MARCH | May 1, 2007 – rally and march for immigrants’ rights. Hundreds of protestors came together on Crows Landing Road in south Modesto, marched to 10th Street Plaza and rallied in front of City Hall to demand fair immigration reform.

IMMIGRANT SANCTUARY | July 10, 2007 – Modesto Brown Berets members and supporters attended a Modesto City Council meeting to demand that the city be turned into an immigrant sanctuary. The Modesto City Council voted it down without much consideration. The Brown Berets had previously submitted the same proposal to the Stanislaus County Board of Supervisors, who refused to put it on their agenda.

The Modesto Brown Berets re-established in August 2009. Current members have been involved in the following actions:

MAY DAY 2006 MARCH | May 1, 2006 – Rally and march for immigrants’ rights. An estimated 12,000+ protestors came together on Crows Landing Road in south Modesto, marched to 10th Street Plaza and gathered in front of City Hall to demand fair immigration reform. This was the largest demonstration in the city’s history.

MAY DAY 2008 RALLY | May 1, 2008 – Rally for immigrants’ rights. Protestors gathered on Crows Landing Road in south Modesto to demand just immigration laws.

KEEP YA HEAD UP FESTIVAL | October 11, 2009 – Free outdoor hip hop festival and concert featuring artists El Vuh, Sherman Austin, Sacrifice, and more. The event put the focus on the issues of police brutality, immigration reform, gang injunctions/gentrification, the prison industrial complex, and all types of social injustice.

Mission Statement: Brown Berets Chapter Autonomo de Modesto (MBB) is a movement by the community and for the community. Although we focus our efforts in the Modesto/Stanislaus County area, we are part of a greater causa that involves countless groups and individuals throughout the world. We believe that through culture, community and direct action Xican@s and other oppressed peoples can defeat the white supremacist capitalist, depletist, patriarchal and sexist structures, laws and policies used to divide and conquer us.

Through culture we can educate and guide the youth to be able to think critically about life because we understand that white supremacist educational systems in the U.S. are simply pipelines to prison and service jobs. Creating alternatives to prison and the military after and during school years is critical to the movement. We empower our people by infusing Xican@ and indigenous culture into their everyday lives while creating a strong sense of community, as we believe that only our own community can truly support and teach our community.

As people indigenous to this continent we reserve the right to live anywhere on this land without fear of hostility and repression. We reclaim and demand our liberty and dignity through direct action, because Capitalism has continually starved our gente of these things. The incarceration rate in our communities is alarming. The police state continues to terrorize our streets with gang injunctions, racial profiling, gang profiling, and biased laws like the three strikes, while agencies like I.C.E. are created to break our spirits and incarcerate our families.

Ya basta! We will no longer tolerate the dehumanization and criminalization of our people. Our ancestors knew we were somebody. Aqui estamos y no nos vamos!…..y no nos olvidamos of all the violent injustices we face on a daily basis….Y QUE? For more information on the Modesto Brown Berets visit:


Categories: Central Valley News, Chicano/Latino, Immigrant Issues, Indigenous Issues


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